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NFL: New England Patriots Unstoppable with Brady Back?

Written by:
Carrie Stroup
Published on:
May/30/2009
Tom Brady

From the Week 1 home opener against the Buffalo Bills to Super Bowl futures odds, there's no question that the Sportsbook.com oddsmakers expect the New England Patriots to dominate this season.

The oddsmakers have the Patriots listed as a heavy favorite in all the NFL Futures Odds available right now and with quarterback Tom Brady back on the field, expectations continue to rise for the three-time Super Bowl Champions.

New England is a hefty 10-point favorite for the Week 1 Monday Night Football opener against the Buffalo Bills, a -400 favorite to win the AFC East Division, a +180 favorite to win the AFC Championship and +350 favorite to capture the teams fourth Super Bowl since 2000.

Not only are the Patriots the leader to win division, AFC and Super Bowl, but oddsmakers have set their Regular Season Win Total at Over/Under 11.5 games. That's the highest Win Total of all 32 teams with the defending champion Pittsburgh Steelers the only other team getting a double digit win total at Over/Under 10.5 victories.

"New England is a team that won nine games last year without their MVP Quarterback and went 16-0 with him the previous regular season," said Sportsbook.com spokesman, Dave Staley. "They do have the third toughest strength of schedule for the upcoming year but if Brady's healthy, that shouldn't be a problem."

Brady performed in front of the media for the first time on the third of New England's four Organized Team Activities and although not practicing at full speed, the media circus was there to document every move.

The  two-time Super Bowl MVP and 2007 NFL MVP, Brady has been the focus of the offseason but bettors would be wise to remember that coach Bill Belichick has spent the offseason re-tooling a slow, aging defense that had trouble getting off the field on third downs last year.

The most notable additions to the team are in the secondary that gave up numerous big plays last year. Cornerbacks Leigh Bodden and Shawn Springs were signed as free agents with safety Patrick Chung and cornerback Darius Butler added early in the draft. These players join 2008 draft picks Terrence Wheatley and Jonathan Wilhite, two players that played well when given time last year.

"You take all the new additions and factor in that they have last year's defensive Rookie of the Year, Jerod Mayo back for his second season, and this defense is going to be improved," said Staley. "Plus, Adalius Thomas is coming back from injury and you have big nose tackle Vince Wilfork in a contract year.

"They are going to be a tough unit to play this season."

Ready to place your bets on the Patriots or any of the other NFL teams? Check Sportsbook.com for a complete list of NFL Betting options.

Carrie Stroup, Gambling911.com Senior Reporter

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