AFC Championship – Patriots Can Grab Edge in Turnover Department From Colts

Updated: January 17, 2015

By Charles Jay

The New England Patriots realize that part of being the more experienced team in playoff football involves the expectation that they are not going to be the team that makes more mistakes, or the bigger mistakes. Quarterback Tom Brady and coach Bill Belichick have been around a long time, and they will be entering their NINTH conference championship game together for a team that is one of the best in the NFL at taking care of the “rock.” On Sunday they will be going up against a team that has been only so-so in the turnover department when they face off against the Indianapolis Colts in NFL betting action that begins at 6:40 PM ET at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA. This game will be televised live nationally by CBS.

The Patriots, as Vietbet customers are well aware, stumbled at the outset of the season, losing two of their first four games, including a very humiliating 41-14 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. At that time the naysayers came out in droves. Calls were made for the retirement of Brady, and it was generally thought on the part of pundits that the era of the Patriots as an extremely formidable NFL entry were over.

But this team lost only two more games the rest of the season, and that included a season finale against Buffalo that was virtually meaningless. So they won ten out of 11 games during a stretch where it really meant something, completely erasing any doubts people had about them. Now Brady and Belichick are on the verge of going to their sixth Super Bowl together, and if they do, they can at least partially thank their grasp of fundamentals for bringing them to this position.

In the NFL betting odds that have been posted on the AFC Championship game by the people at Vietbet, the Patriots are the favorites:

New England Patriots -6.5
Indianapolis Colts +6.5

Over 54 points -110
Under 54 points -110

If you look at New England’s offensive stats on a per-drive basis, you’ll see how well they take care of the ball. They have turned it over on only 7.5% of all their drives, and that is just a tiny bit behind the two league leaders, Green Bay and Seattle, who happen to be playing in the NFC championship game. The only player who has turned the ball over from scrimmage this season is Brady, as no other player but him has fumbled the ball. That’s pretty amazing. All told, the Patriots are +13 in the turnover department. And knowing that this team takes care of the ball informs Vietbet customers that they can get the ball down the field without making a lot of silly errors.

Meanwhile, Indianapolis has not been so lucky in the turnover department, registering a minus-6, which was the worst at of any playoff team. Andrew Luck is extremely talented, utterly fearless, and threw 40 TD passes, but he may fit the category of “boom or bust.” He threw sixteen interceptions in the regular season and added two more in the playoffs. In last year’s post-season meeting with New England, he was intercepted four times. The Colts had 31 turnovers on the season, which was third most in the NFL. So if you are handicapping this game to lay down a wager at Vietbet, you have to figure that if either of these two teams is going to be the one that makes the mistake that changes the course of the contest, it is Indianapolis.

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