Jacksonville Jaguars vs. New England Patriots
Date and Time: Thursday, August 10, 2017, 7:30 p.m. ET
Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, MA
Preseason NFL Week 1 Opening Odds: Patriots -5.5, O/U 40.5]
Jaguars vs. Patriots TV Coverage: Local
The message is clear here from the oddsmakers: They suspect that the combination of Tom Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo will put a slew of points on the board even right off the bat in the preseason for the Pats. Brady, of course, won't play very long in this game. He threw a total of 35 passes in the preseason last year, throwing for 242 yards with two touchdowns and a pick, and we can't imagine he'll get more than two shots to put New England in the end zone.
Jimmy G might not get much more time than that either. Belichick knows that he has a bargaining chip with Garoppolo and doesn't want to blow it by having him play poorly in the preseason. He completed 36-of-54 passes in the preseason last year for 406 yards with a touchdown and no interceptions.
Jacoby Brissett, who was awful in relief of both Brady and Garoppolo when called into game duty last year for a couple weeks, should play most of this game.
Doug Marrone is in an interesting spot here in his first season in Jacksonville. He doesn't have a slew of confidence in Blake Bortles, but he has no choice but to see if he should roll with him this year or not. It's curious as to whether Bortles might get a full half of football in this game; surely, Marrone will want to have him come out after something positive happens instead of a bunch of negatives.
Chad Henne will see his time, but Brandon Allen will get a lot of the mop up work for the Jags, too.
Betting Trends of Note
For as dominant as the Pats were last year and figure to be this year, they only outscored teams by a total of seven points in the preseason last year. Sure, they went 3-1 SU and 2-2 ATS, but those aren't the types of stats you look for out of a team you're laying 5.5-points with in the first preseason game.
Jacksonville hasn't had a winning record in the preseason since 2012 when it went 3-1, and it hasn't outscored teams in the preseason since 2010.
Jaguars vs. Patriots Free Picks
The stats seem damning against Jacksonville, but we still can't get away from this many points. If there's another game on the board you like but aren't quite confident enough without six extra points on your side, this might not be a bad spot for a teaser at one of the top 5 sportsbooks that give you favorable prices on teasers.
That said, we're still going to take the points. In the end, this is still the first preseason game, and this one feels a lot more like a tossup than a game in which the hosts should be around -250 on the moneyline. Taking the Jags on the moneyline will present a lot of value, but we'll be a lot happier taking the 5.5-points, even against a relatively high total of 40.5. The dogs and the under seem to be the right plays in this game, and even teasing these two together might not end up being the worst idea in the world either.
Jaguars vs. Patriots ATS Pick: Jaguars +5.5 at BookMaker.eu
Jaguars vs. Patriots Score Prediction: Patriots 19, Jaguars 16