When the Patriots travel to face the Chargers, you will see of the highest totals of the weekend at 46 ½. That’s for good reason. Normally, these teams can light up the scoreboard. The Patriots started the Moss-less era by beating the Baltimore Ravens, 23-20. That game barely went under, but posting 23 points against the stingy Ravens is a good accomplishment. That was the Patriots first under this season. The Patriots score 30.8 points a game, while giving up 23.2 points. Look for those trends to continue.
The Chargers are coming off a disappointing loss to the Rams, but San Diego is a different team at home this season. Expect the offense to bounce back. The Chargers average 26.2 points a game, but that balloons to 39.5 for home games. They give up 21 points a game.
It appears that both teams should at least score into the 20s, so making the total should not be a stretch.
Here is a breakdown of the other NFL totals:
Pittsburgh at Miami (40 ½): The over for the Steelers is 2-3 and the last over happened only because the Browns called a late time out and the Steelers, instead of running out the clock, scored a touchdown to go over by one point. The Steelers are all about defense. They allow 12 points a game and 270 total yards for road games. The Steelers score 22.8 points. The Dolphins are also a defense-first team and allow 22.4 points. They score only 17.8 points a game.
Cincinnati at Atlanta (43): The Bengals have underachieved this season. With the offensive weapons at hand, they were expected to put up decent numbers, but the Bengals are averaging only 20 points a game. They average 351 total yards, which is decent, but they are having problems scoring. The Bengals give up 20.4 points and 308 total yards. The over for the Falcons is 3-3. The Falcons average 357 total yards and 70 offensive plays a game. They average 21.7 points a game. That’s OK for the over, but the Falcons allow 10.5 points and 264 total yards on defense. That’s not OK for the over.
Jacksonville at Kansas City (no line): Jaguars QB David Garrard status is uncertain due to a concussion, so the line has not been set. The Jags average 18.3 points, while giving up 27.8 points and 374 total yards. The Chiefs average 21.6 points, but give up 18.4 points. At home, that shrinks to 12 points a game.
Philadelphia at Tennessee (43): The Eagles will probably be without Michael Vick and receiver DeSean Jackson. The Eagles score 25.5 points a game, while accumulating 380 total yards. The Eagles give up 20 points a game and 313 total yards. Titans quarterback Vince Young is day-to-day with a sprained knee, but the Titans rely on running back Chris Johnson for the bulk of their offense. The Titans average 27 points a game, but only 55 plays and 298 total yards. The Titans give up 16.3 points. For home games, they allow only 247 total yards.
Washington at Chicago (40): It’s hard to believe that these two teams will get to 40 points. The Redskins averaged 25.5 points a game against the Colts and the Texans, two teams that struggle defensively. The rest of their games, they have not topped 20 points. They average 18.8 points, while giving up 19.8 points. The Bears are a defensive team, giving up only 16.2 points. They score 18.7 points, and they have 285 total yards on 52 plays. Their offensive line problems have slowed down the passing game.
Cleveland at New Orleans (43): The Browns are an offensively challenge team and score 14.7 points a game and may have to rely on rookie Colt McCoy another week. The Browns give up 20.8 points a game. The Saints finally put together a good offensive game last week. Was that because they are starting to click or were playing the Bucs? This week, they are home again and should dominate the Browns. The Saints average 21.7 points and 371 total yards. They give up 18 points a game.
Buffalo at Baltimore (38): The last three games for the Bills have gone over because they have give up 38 points a game in that stretch. Overall, the statistics for the Bills are very depressing. They average 17.4 points a game on 251 total yards. They average only 49 total plays. They give up 32.2 points and 382 total yards. The Ravens have not done well, offensively this season. That will probably change this week. They are scoring 18.7 points, while giving up only 15.8 points. They allow only 280 total yards and 55 offensive plays. For this to get to the over, the Ravens will have to have an outstanding scoring day.
San Francisco at Carolina (35): This is one of the lowest totals you will see for an NFL game. It’s not because they are great defensive teams. Quite the opposite. These are two teams that can’t get out of their own way. The Niners average 15.5 points a game and 10 points for road games, while giving up 23.2 points a game. The Panthers average 10.4 points a game and 236 total yards on 56 plays. They give up 22 points a game and 317 total yards. The over for the Panther is 1-4.
Arizona at Seattle (41):The over for the Cardinals is 4-1, mainly because their defense has been getting torched for 27.6 points a game and 385 total yards. They have been inconsistent on offense, scoring 17.6 points. But they have been averaging 238 total yards on 51 plays. Their quarterback woes have shown up with the lack of offense. The Seahawks average 19.6 points a game, but that inflates to 29 for home games. They give up 19.4 points a game. The Seahawks, if they can exploit the Cardinals like everybody else does, should push the scoring to get to the total. You would only need some moderate scoring from the Cardinals to get the over.
Oakland at Denver (42 ½): The Raiders had a streak of three straight overs until they had an offensive clunker against the 49ers last week. The Raiders average 20 points a game, while giving up 25.2. If the offensively challenged 49ers scored 17 against Oakland, the Broncos, who average 378 total yards, should light up the Raiders. The Broncos defense gives up 23.3 points, so getting to the total should not be a problem.
Minnesota at Green Bay (44 ½): The last two games the Vikings have played, against two good defensive teams (Jets, Cowboys) have gone over the total. Combine the fact that Brett Favre has been getting the rust knocked off his game and the arrival of receiver Randy Moss, and it’s clear why scoring is up. Now factor in the Packers, who are decimated with injuries on defense, and the Vikings should be able to score some points. The question is whether the Packers, who are one-dimensional since the injury to running back Ryan Grant, can match the scoring. To have a shot, Green Bay may have to turn this game into a shootout. Their last four meetings have gone over the total.
New York Giants at Dallas (44 ½): Three of their last four meetings have gone over the total. The Cowboys, 1-4, are in desperation mode. The last three games, the Giants have picked up their offense, scoring 26.3 points, and 373 total yards. They are giving up only 11 points. The Cowboys score 20.4 points a game, but accumulate 400 total yards. They are having problems getting the ball into the end zone. They give up 22.2 points a game. Both of these offenses should score and get to the over. Only red-zone turnovers and bad penalties can limit the scoring here.
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