The Indianapolis Colts will head up to Foxborough this weekend, where they will face the New England Patriots in a Week 9 matchup featuring two underwhelming AFC squads.
Both teams had higher expectations entering the year but have fallen short of that through the first half of the regular season. The Patriots, who made the playoffs a year ago, are in last place in the AFC East with a 4-4 clip. The Colts, who were the betting favorite to win the AFC South in the preseason, are 3-4-1 to begin the year.
The Colts are coming off back-to-back losses — at the hands of the Tennessee Titans and Washington Commanders — that could prove to be detrimental. Quarterback Sam Ehlinger got his first career start in a 17-16 loss to the Commanders, and he is slated to be under center again this week after the team decided to bench veteran Matt Ryan.
As for the home team, the Patriots are coming off a 22-17 win over the New York Jets and have won three of their last four games. Kicker Nick Folk was responsible for 15 of the team’s 22 points, connecting on five field goal attempts in the win over a division foe.
Caesars Sportsbook lists the Patriots as a 5.5-point favorite at home with an over/under of 40.
Let’s take a closer look at the odds and trends:
New England Patriots vs. Indianapolis Colts
Time/TV: 1 p.m. ET Sunday, CBS
Point spread (from Caesars Sportsbook): Patriots -5.5
Money line: Colts +196/Patriots -240
Analysis: As the current total of 40 would indicate, don’t expect much scoring when these two teams square off on Sunday. There is a reason why this game has the lowest total for the entire Week 9 slate.
The Patriots rank 17th in the NFL in scoring with an average of 22.1 points per game. They have failed to reach the 20-point threshold in three different contests. The under has hit in four of New England’s eight games so far this season.
Yet the Colts have been an even better gift for under bettors this year, with seven of their games finishing under the closing point total. The Colts are averaging 16.1 points per contest, which is only better than two teams in the league. They have scored more than 20 in an outing just once thus far.
In a game that figures to be more of a defensive battle, it makes sense to side with Bill Belichick’s squad to ultimately prevail, especially against an offense that just fired its coordinator and is rolling out a young quarterback on the road.
Prediction: Patriots 23, Colts 13