New England Patriots-San Francisco 49ers Picks Against the Spread

Senior analyst Larry Hartstein breaks down Patriots-49ers from a betting perspective; will New England cover nearly two touchdowns against the improving 49ers?

 

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS AT SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (+13, O/U 51), Sun., 4:25 p.m. ET

The Patriots and 49ers both snapped streaks in Week 10. New England lost its first game with Tom Brady back, while San Francisco covered for the first time since the season opener.

Sportsline Image
EXCLUSIVE TO SPORTSLINE PRO MEMBERS
Sun 11/20 4:25 PM EST
New England -588 O/U 51.5
San Francisco +400 +10.5
C
A
C
NE
SF
VIEW FULL GAME ANALYSIS
Get All Expert Picks Now for $9.99 a month

Now they square off in an apparent mismatch. Though New England likely will be without tight end Rob Gronkowski (lung), you typically don't want to mess with Bill Belichick off a loss.

The Pats are 39-17-1 against the spread following a straight-up loss.

On the other side, Colin Kaepernick has sparked the formerly moribund 49ers. In his past two starts, he's averaged 304 passing yards with a 96.8 passer rating.

It hasn't been enough to end San Fran's eight-game skid, but for the first time in a while the team has shown it can be competitive.

As you'd expect, most trends favor the current Super Bowl favorites.

The Pats have covered four straight road games and are 22-8 ATS in their last 30 games after allowing 30-plus points. The 49ers are 2-9-1 ATS in their last 12 games against winning teams. 

LINE MOVEMENT

This line opened at 13.5 at BookMaker.eu, and after a brief flirtation with 14, it fell back to 13.

"You've got a great team coming off a loss many thought they'd win easily and a pitiful team coming off a close game against a perceived quality team," BookMaker odds consultant Scott Cooley told SportsLine.

"Those ingredients create a sharp vs. square divide. We've seen some sharp money on the 49ers and may get more of that when betting limits are raised," he added. "The average bettor will overreact to Gronk's absence, but I doubt this falls any lower than 13 so if you like the Pats get them now."

As of late Thursday, 83 percent of the bets were on New England, per Sports Insights.

Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski (lung) didn't travel with the team to the West Coast and the line dropped late in the week to 11.5. The total fell half-a-point to 51.

LAST WEEK

The Patriots came out flat after their bye and dropped their first game since Brady returned from suspension, losing 31-24 to the Seahawks as 7.5-point home favorites. New England is 7-2 ATS and the Over is 3-2 with Brady playing.

The 49ers turned in a valiant effort at Arizona, losing 23-20 as 13.5-point underdogs. It was San Fran's first cover since the season opener and the second straight solid performance by Kaepernick.

The game stayed Under the total by a half-point, snapping the 49ers' four-game Over streak.

SELECTION

Get all SportsLine expert picks on Patriots-49ers here.

A former lead writer for Covers and The Linemakers, Larry combines a vast network of Vegas and offshore sources with an analytical approach he honed during his years working for Pro Football Focus. Larry specializes in the NFL. In 2015 he went 35-25-2 (58 percent) on NFL game picks, 3-1 on season win total plays and 4-1 on Super Bowl props. Larry correctly predicted Joe Philbin would be the first NFL coach fired -- at 15/1 odds -- and even nailed the week he'd be dismissed.