Tom Brady in Foxboro, favored by a touchdown.
Seems old hat, but a lot is different. In fact, almost everything.
Brady torments first round rookie quarterbacks, he is 18-2 in such roles and won the most recent 13 games since losing to Mark Sanchez of the New York Jets in 2009. All but one of those victories were compiled while Brady wore a Patriots uniform, he led his new team to a triumph over the Los Angeles Chargers last season with their rookie quarterback, Justin Herbert. Tonight, he faces the Patriots with their first round rookie quarterback, Mac Jones.
Another Brady celebration in Foxboro?
Brady comes to town with the reigning Super Bowl Champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In a story that can only exist outside the boundaries of rational thought, the first year Brady left the Patriots he led a different team to a Super Bowl win. The victory means Brady has more Super Bowl victories personally than any other franchise in the league, seven.
New England’s six, all engineered by Brady, has the Patriots organization tied with the Pittsburgh Steelers for all-time Super Bowl wins. The San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys are just a win behind the leading franchises, and two behind Brady.
The former Patriots quarterback was hoping to bring another friend and target to a reunion with Gillette Stadium and their long adoring fans, Rob Gronkowski. But an injury suffered during last week’s loss in Los Angeles to the Rams has him sidelined for at least this week and in all likelihood one or two more.
On the news that Gronkowski was out, the line dipped a half-point. Before the announcement the Buccaneers were favored by 7, a line that had grown from an opening number that pegged them a 5½ point favorite. The line will likely go back to at least seven points before tonight’s kickoff while the public is betting more than 80% on the Buccaneers.
It seems so unfair to New England Head Coach Bill Belichick.
A lot of people think now that his success hinged on his quarterback, and without Brady last season, Belichick struggled with a losing team. His first losing record since 2000, the year before Brady took over behind center.
Is Belichick ever going to get a break?
First Brady leaves, then he wins a Super Bowl with his new team, and now he is coming to town to blow your doors off. Everyone thinks it, well, not everyone. Not me.
Back the Buccaneers and you are laying points with a road favorite that has allowed more points than all but five other NFL teams. The Patriots are coming off a loss and have a rookie quarterback behind center. The Buccaneers have the best of all time running their offense, and a defense that still gets the respect of opposing offenses.
Who do you think will have the eye of the tiger tonight?
The team that has all the reasons to win or the opponent that has a fear of getting blown out?
Brady may win this thing, he usually does, but the Buccaneers as road favorites off a road loss when wagered on by nearly 90% of the public is a losing proposition nearly every time.
Like this one.
Qoxhi Picks: New England Patriots (+6½) over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers