San Francisco 49ers vs. New England Patriots Betting Predictions

49ers at Patriots NFL
San Francisco 49ers vs. New England Patriots Betting Predictions

Both of these teams entered the season with Super Bowl aspirations, and neither has lived up to that hype so far. The Patriots fell flat offensively against the Broncos last week at home to fall below .500 in October for the first time in 18 years. San Francisco looked horrendous in consecutive weeks before stomping the Rams last week while looking like the defending NFC champions. With a full week of practice, New England should be closer to the team we saw before COVID hit the facility while the 49ers will struggle with the Patriots’ defense.

San Francisco 49ers vs. New England Patriots Betting Odds

It seems like Jimmy Garoppolo is finally healthy as he makes his return to New England for the first time since he was traded to San Francisco. Perhaps the 49ers rushed Garoppolo back too soon to play against the Dolphins two weeks ago because last week against the Rams, he was composed and back to the 2019 version of himself. Garoppolo threw three first-half touchdowns to stake San Francisco before the 49ers offense started to struggle against a tough Rams defense. Garoppolo likely won’t have the same aerial success against New England, but the 49ers’ rushing attack should be able to soften up the Patriots’ defense a little bit no matter who is at running back for San Francisco. The bigger question is how will the 49ers approach defending Cam Newton, who has proven adept as both a passer and runner this year within the New England offense. The 49ers might be wise to try to turn Newton into a passer considering they rank fifth in the league in passing defense. However, that is easier said than done and San Francisco must be ready to defend a run-heavy offense this week because that is how the Patriots have had success this year.

The impact of Newton’s positive COVID-19 test had a large impact on the New England offense in its last two games. The backup tandem of Brian Hoyer and Jarrett Stidham fell flat on short notice against the Chiefs. Then Newton returned and looked very rusty last week in a loss to the Broncos. Newton should be much improved this week against a tougher 49ers defense, and the Patriots likely won’t have three turnovers like they did last week. Still, there is a lot of onus on the defense to carry this team right now and Newton needs to pull his weight with the rest of the offense. That means a better passing attack than the ones that threw for less than 200 yards in four of New England’s five games. The revolving door of running backs to complement Newton’s rushing has worked for them so far as New England leads the league in rushing, but the Patriots have become almost too one-dimensional on offense. Defensively, New England is still one of the best units in the NFL, especially when defending the pass, but the Patriots have been average against the run this season. That part of the defense must improve against a run-heavy 49ers offense that will also present problems by utilizing Kittle in the passing game.

When it comes to the points total in this game, there really is no simple answer. The line is set at 43.5 points at the NFL betting sites in New Jersey, which seems about right, but something tells me this is going to be a far different game than we’re expecting. The 49ers found their offensive flow last week and they will test this New England defense with its commitment to the run. New England should be much better on offense now that Newton has a week of practice and isn’t as rusty. So I’m going to search for value again and find an alternate total for our bet. I landed on over 47.5 total points at +150 odds as a total that is realistic while still providing a decent enough payout if it hits.

Patriots to win

The Patriots are slight 1.5-point favorites due to being the home team, which doesn’t provide much value. Most larger spread are too much risk as well, so we’ll have to stick with a sweet spot of 3.5 points for value and risk. If San Francisco was more consistent, I’d feel more confident in picking a spread for this game, but we don’t know which 49ers team we will see. If New England bounces back and plays up to its potential, it can compete with the best the 49ers have to offer and squeak out a win. But if the San Francisco team that lost to the Eagles and Dolphins at home shows up in New England, the Patriots will obliterate them. At +155 odds, I like taking New England laying 3.5 points at the New Jersey online sports betting sites.

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Josh Walfish is an award-winning journalist who has been covering college and professional sports in the United States. He holds a journalism degree from Northwestern University and his work has appeared in the Miami Herald, Chicago Sun-Times and Providence Journal. He most recently chronicled the UMass hockey teams rise to prominence over the last two years for the local newspaper

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