Jacksonville Jaguars at New England Patriots - 1/21/18 NFL Pick, Odds, and Prediction
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Jacksonville Jaguars (12-6) at New England Patriots (14-3)
NFL Football: Sunday, January 21, 2018 at 3:05 pm (Gillette Stadium)
The Line: New England Patriots -8.5 -- Over/Under: 46
The 2017-18 AFC Championship game comes to us from Foxborough, as the Jacksonville Jaguars take on the New England Patriots in NFL action on Sunday afternoon.
The Jacksonville Jaguars reached the AFC title game with a convincing and highly entertaining 45-42 win over Pittsburgh in the divisional round. Blake Bortles threw for 214 yards and a touchdown on 14 of 26 passing, while Leonard Fournette led the Jags in rushing with 109 yards and 3 touchdowns on a team-high 25 carries and T.J. Yeldon chipped in 20 rushing yards and a score of his own. Yeldon also led the team in receiving with 3 catches for 57 yards, while Keelan Cole added 45 receiving yards and Marqise Lee added 3 catches of his own in the win. Tommy Bohanon added the lone receiving TD for the Jags in the win. The Jaguars defense posted a pair of sacks, an interception and a Yannick Ngakoue forced fumble was picked up by Telvin Smith and returned 50 yards for a touchdown as Jacksonville gave up 545 yards of total offense in the win.
The New England Patriots punched their ticket to the AFC championship by virtue of their 35-14 victory over Tennessee in the division round. Tom Brady led the team with 337 yards passing and 3 touchdowns on 35 of 53 through the air, while Dion Lewis led the team with 62 yards on 15 carries and Brandon Bolden along with James White, each recorded a rushing score in the win. Danny Amendola led the team with 11 catches for 112 yards, while Rob Gronkowski caught 6 balls for 81 yards and a touchdown. Dion Lewis caught 9 passes out of the backfield for 79 yards, while the aforementioned White, along with Chris Hogan, caught a receiving TD of their own in the winning effort. The Pats’ D combined for a whopping 8 sacks, stifling the Titans to the tune of 267 yards of total offense and a 5 for 15 mark on 3rd down in the win.
Jacksonville is 12-5 ATS in their last 17 games against the AFC and 2-5 ATS in their last 7 playoff road games while the over is 5-0 in their last 5 games following a win. New England is 27-11-2 ATS in their last 40 games against a team with a winning record and 36-15-2 ATS in their last 53 games overall while the over is 4-0 in their last 4 playoff games. Jacksonville is 2-5 ATS in the last 7 meetings between these two teams and 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings in New England.
I really want to take the points with Jacksonville here, as the Jaguars really impressed with their offensive output against Pittsburgh. However, the Jaguars also gave up 42 points against a Pittsburgh offense that was able to move the ball through the air. Granted, a lot of it was catch and run, but if Pittsburgh can do that, imagine what the offense led by Tom Brady will be able to do. Also, Bortles has had a good season, but he’s not the most consistent quarterback in the world, and considering the Patriots logged 8 sacks against Tennessee, I think they’ll be able to do the same to Bortles and contain the offense, leading to a Patriots victory by double digits and a 2nd straight trip to the Super Bowl.