It’s a weekend of champions in college football as conference titles are up for grabs throughout the country. After analyzing the biggest matchups of the weekend, we’re confidently putting money on these three NCAAF conference title games. Keep reading to get our expert picks! Over/Under 35.5 Points: Iowa at Michigan He’s back — Jim Harbaugh […]
Patriots Taking Heavy Early Action Vs. Seahawks In Super Bowl XLIX
Back before conference championship Sunday, the Seattle Seahawks were listed as 3-point favorites for a potential Super Bowl XLIX matchup with the New England Patriots. The line actually opened officially at Seattle -2.5 following the AFC & NFC title games on Sunday, but heavy early action on New England has some sites with the Patriots as 1-point favorites now. A few, like Bovada, still have Seattle as a 1-point favorite but there's no question where the early money is flowing. The total is currently at 48 points.
It's not a huge surprise that New England is taking the early lean as the Patriots were dominant in their 45-7 win over Indianapolis to earn a sixth Super Bowl trip for Tom Brady and Coach Bill Belichick. The Seahawks were very lucky to beat Green Bay 28-22 in overtime in Sunday's early game. Ironically, Belichick replaced current Seahawks coach Pete Carroll in New England in 2000.
Brady threw for three TDs against the Colts and he has surpassed John Elway for most Super Bowls for a quarterback and tied defensive lineman Mike Lodish for most by any player. Belichick tied Don Shula for most Super Bowls for a coach and broke a tie with Tom Landry with his 21st postseason win. New England tied Dallas and Pittsburgh for most appearances in the big game with eight. The 38-point margin of victory is the largest in Patriots postseason history and the third-largest in a conference championship game. The Patriots will play at University of Phoenix Stadium for the first time since their Super Bowl XLII loss to the Giants.
The last team to repeat as Super Bowl champion was New England a decade ago and that's what Seattle is going for. They were able to beat the game Packers despite four interceptions from Russell Wilson. Seattle scored twice in a 44-second span, survived a game-tying field goal with 14 seconds left, and won in overtime on a 35-yard touchdown pass from Wilson to Jermaine Kearse.
The Seahawks became the first defending champion to make the Super Bowl since those Patriots 10 years ago. Seattle is 10-0 over the last three seasons against quarterbacks who have won a Super Bowl in their careers. Wilson is now 3-0 as a starter against Aaron Rodgers. The Seahawks are the first No. 1 seed to make consecutive Super Bowls since the Buffalo Bills in 1990 and 1991. The last NFC team to do that was the Washington Redskins in 1982 and 1983.
The Seahawks and Patriots last met in Week 6 of the 2012 season, a 24-23 Seattle home win. Wilson found Sidney Rice behind the secondary for a 46-yard touchdown with 1:18 remaining, and the Seahawks rallied for 14 points in the final 7:31. Brady threw for 395 yards but also was picked off twice. Wilson threw for 293, three scores and no picks. New England came away with just one touchdown in six trips inside Seattle's 20.
This year's Patriots have averaged 33.4 points per game since Oct. 1. Seattle has allowed an average of just 9.9 points during an eight-game winning streak.
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