The Los Angeles Chargers will leave balmy Southern California to take on the New England Patriots in an AFC Divisional Round matchup on Sunday at 1:05 p.m. ET. It’s L.A.’s second straight cross-country game after Philip Rivers and company defeated the AFC North champion Ravens last week. The spread has been relatively stable this week,
with New England going off at -4 in the latest Patriots vs. Chargers odds, just half-a-point down from the opening line. The over-under for total points Vegas expects to be scored is 47.5 despite expected frigid temperatures. Rivers is looking for his first title in six postseason chances, while Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is looking for a sixth Super Bowl. This season might be Rivers’ best shot yet, so before locking in any Patriots vs. Chargers picks of your own, be sure to check out the NFL predictions from SportsLine’s Projection Model.
SportsLine’s proprietary computer model went 176-80 straight up last season and beat more than 95 percent of CBS Sports Office Pool players in 2016 and ’17. It also performed better than 98 percent of experts tracked by NFLPickWatch.com during that span. Additionally, it went 48-34 on A-rated picks against the spread last season, and $100 bettors who have followed it the past two seasons are up nearly $4,000.
The model has continued to nail its top-rated picks in 2018-19, entering the divisional round on a blistering 16-6 run. For the season, it is now 30-15 on all top-rated picks, extending its two-year run to a strong 78-49. It also went 170-84 on straight-up NFL picks during the regular season, ranking inside the top 10 on NFLPickWatch.com. Additionally, it hit all four NFL spread picks on Wild Card Weekend. Anyone who has followed it is way up.
Now, it has crunched the numbers for Chargers vs. Patriots (stream live on fuboTV) from every angle and simulated the game 10,000 times. We can tell you it’s leaning Under, but it also says one side of the spread has all the value, making it a must-back. That pick is only available at SportsLine.
The model knows New England has historically dominated Rivers and the Chargers. Rivers is just 1-7 against New England in his career straight-up, with the only win coming against a Matt Cassel-led squad. The Patriots are 11-1 against the Chargers in games played at Foxborough.
Additionally, the Patriots were the only team that went undefeated this season at home, and they’ve made seven consecutive AFC Championship Game appearances. The Pats also have the advantage of a week off, while the Chargers played a physical game against Baltimore in the Wild Card Round. New England is 6-2 against the spread at home this season and has been favored in every game at Gillette Stadium.
Still, New England is no sure thing to cover the Patriots vs. Chargers spread against an L.A. (13-4) team that heads to Foxborough playing perhaps as well as any team in the NFL right now.
The model knows the Chargers had to innovate last week against Lamar Jackson and the Ravens, playing seven defensive backs the majority of the time in an effort to contain the opposing quarterback. However, they’ll have to take a more conventional approach this week against the Patriots, which is something they should still be more than capable of after finishing in the top 10 in scoring defense, total defense, pass defense and run defense.
The Patriots have struggled when they’re out-gained on the ground, rushing for an average of just 86.8 yards per game while giving up 152 in their five losses this season. A potent pass rush featuring players like Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram could make New England’s offense one-dimensional. The Chargers are also 10-7 against the spread this season and a rock solid 8-2 ATS on the road. They’ve covered five of six times as an underdog or pick’em.
Who wins Chargers vs. Patriots? And which side of the spread is a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the spread you need to jump on Sunday, all from the computer model that has returned nearly $4,000 to $100 bettors over the past two seasons.