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NFL Preseason Odds – Washington Football Team at New England Patriots

Written by:
Phil Simon
Published on:
Aug/10/2021

Week 1 of the NFL preseason gets underway Thursday when the Washington Football Team visits the New England Patriots. The teams finished with identical 7-9 records last season but the feeling was vastly different between them. For the Pats the season was a failure since they posted a losing record for the first time in decades and failed to reach the playoffs. The picture was rosier on the other side since the team formerly known as the Redskins actually won its division with a sub-.500 ledger. Both teams are looking for improvements in the win column and it starts with quarterback play. The Football Team is hoping to squeeze another year out of Ryan Fitzpatrick while the Pats look for Cam Newton to return to his former MVP ways. Both should see playing time, though not much.

Washington Football Team at New England Patriots
Date and Time: Thursday, August 12, 2021, 7:30 p.m. ET
Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, MA
Opening NFL Odds: Washington -1.5, O/U 35.5
Football Team at Patriots TV Coverage: NFL Network

Odds Analysis

This is an unusual preseason for the NFL. After all exhibition games where canceled last year due to COVID concerns teams will get a chance to evaluate talent in a game setting. But how coaches approach the games will be something to keep an eye on. There is one less preseason contest on the slate with an additional game tacked on to the regular season. In essence this is the second week of preseason games under the old format. A sign of how things have changed in New England is the spread. Washington is laying 1.5-points on the road, which is saying something. Belichick never worried about preseason results in past years, but he also never had an issue at the most important position on the field.

Washington Football Team

Even though they won the NFC East last season, doing it with a losing record shows just how weak the division was. There is plenty to work on for their title defense and it starts on offense. A group that ranked 30th in yards per game and averaged fewer than 21 points needed an upgrade. The acquisition of Fitzpatrick might be an improvement over the combination of Alex Smith, Dwayne Haskins, Kyle Allen and Taylor Heinicke, which combined to throw as many interceptions as touchdown passes.

No one believes Fitz will be sitting on the bench once the regular season starts, but recent comments from Ron Rivera suggest we might see more of him in the first exhibition contest. That makes a lot of sense since the offense needs to perform at a much higher level. We can also expect the Football Team to work on the run game since it was awful last year ranking near the bottom in yards per attempt.

The strength of the team is its top-5 defense from a season ago. The group has the potential to be even better in 2021 and has plenty of depth with a number of battles for roster spots at linebacker and in the secondary. Defenders should have fun playing a majority of snaps against rookie Mac Jones giving plenty of value to the UNDER.

New England Patriots

It’s a do-over for the Pats, who suffered through their first losing season in two decades. Maybe Newton will feel more comfortable behind center this season and getting a preseason to work out the kinks should be beneficial. We never saw a lot of Tom Brady during the preseason when he was in New England, but Belichick needs to get his offense figured out as well after finishing 27th in yards and points per game in 2020. The Pats went 3-1 in the previous two exhibition seasons leading to double-digit wins, two division titles and a Super Bowl victory. Of course they also had Brady.

What’s interesting is that Jones has gotten first-team reps in practice and is the QB of the future as long as he doesn’t muck things up. Belichick has been pleased with the rookie’s play, but wearing the red jersey in practice is much different than facing live ammo. Jones will get a ton of chances on Thursday, though.

Just like the Football Team the strength of the Pats is on defense. Several newcomers are expected to start once the season begins and should see at least a series on Thursday. A number of backups who previously had a starting role will take over making it difficult for the Football Team to gain any traction.

Bet Football Team at Patriots at BookMaker.eu

There isn’t a lot of stock put on preseason results. And with two veteran coaches who understand how the system works, winning and losing is even less important. Both offenses need work, but at the start of the preseason the defense always has the advantage. With inexperienced QBs taking most of the snaps on Thursday points will be hard to come by. I do like the Pats and Jones is a winner, so take the home team and the points while backing the UNDER.

NFL Score Prediction: Patriots 16, Football Team 13

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- Phil Simon, Gambling911.com

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