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Monday, 23 October 2017 17:36

Patriots Favored by 3.5 Points in Super Bowl LI Rematch, But Should They Be?

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Everyone knows the story by now.

The Atlanta Falcons were leading the New England Patriots 28-3 in Super Bowl LI with 2:17 remaining in the third quarter. Then, Tom Brady and the Patriots engineered the greatest comeback in Super Bowl history, forced the first overtime in Super Bowl history and capped off the game with the team’s fifth Super Bowl win in the past 15 years.

Fast forward eight months, and it’s time for the two teams to meet again. New England and Atlanta will clash at Gillette Stadium for Sunday Night Football, both with two losses on the year and both looking less impressive than their 2016 versions. So that leads to this question…

Should the Patriots be favored by 3.5 points this Sunday?

This handy guide explained game totals for those of you who are wondering how this works. Most sportsbooks on MyTopSportsbooks.com have New England set to win by just over a field goal, but with a porous defense and a less than impressive offensive line, the Patriots will face a serious test on both sides of the ball.

Then again, Atlanta is having its own issues. Sure, the offense is still high-flying with Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and the running back tandem of Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman. But after starting the year 3-0, the Falcons have lost two straight games (both the AFC East opponents -- Buffalo and Miami) and the defense has had its own struggles.

It appears having the home field is the only advantage New England has, and even with that, this Patriots defense has a lot to prove.

This game will be high scoring, likely over the 53.5-point mark that’s been set, and there’s a very good chance this will be a close one. The final score could look a lot like the final score of Super Bowl LI, but likely without as much drama packed in. Then again, if New England’s defense can’t contain the Atlanta passing attack, this game could turn into a blowout.

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