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Pats not double-digit faves, first time in 12 home games

New England has played 12 home games since the last time they were a 3-point favorite. In all 12 games, they were favored by at least 11 points. Tonight, you can get them again as 3-point home chalk.

Denver Broncos at New England Patriots -3 O/U 46

Buffalo’s win over San Diego Sunday has a big impact on Monday’s game between the Patriots and Broncos.

The Patriots (3-2) need a win to keep pace in the AFC East with the Buffalo Bills (5-1), who won yesterday, and the Broncos (4-2) could use a win to extend their lead over the San Diego Chargers (3-4), who lost yesterday, in the AFC West.

And when was the last time you could get the Patriots at home at -3? It was last year at home to those Chargers when they routed SD as 3.5-point favorites.

Since that game, they have been double-digit home chalk 12 consecutive times. Read the {URL=}matchup report.{/URL}

Both teams are coming off a loss and while the Broncos narrowly lost to the Jacksonville Jaguars 24-17 the Patriots were crushed by the Chargers losing 30-10.

In this game the difference may be how well the Patriots rush the ball. They are not one of the better rushing teams in the league, but it helps that Denver’s defense ranks 30th in the NFL.

If the Pats can run the ball it will keep the Broncos offense off the field for long periods of time. The Patriots and their 14th ranked defense have to find a way to stop Denver QB Jay Cutler and the Broncos 2nd ranked offense.

The Broncos are not afraid to get into a shootout, as they can light up the scoreboard. However, with Matt Cassel under center for the Pats a high scoring will work against them. The once dominating Patriots offense is only ranked 25th in the league this season.

This year Denver is 4-1 against the spread and New England is 2-3. In their past 5 games against the Patriots the Broncos are 5-0 ATS. In 7 of the last 8 games played in New England the total has been Under.

My Pick: It’s hard to imagine a Patriots team that is struggling offensively, but take Brady out of the mix and that’s what you have. Cassel has been decent this season, but he can’t win games by himself and he is not good at throwing the deep ball, which takes randy Moss out of the mix.

Still, the Patriots are good and at home and they should be able to run the ball against a weak front line defense of the Broncos. Look for the Patriots to win a close game and to just cover the spread.