There’s a mantra in Las Vegas: “Good teams win, great teams cover.” Well, no NFL team covered the spread more often this past decade than the New England Patriots, ESPN Chalk’s best team to bet of the 2010s.
The Patriots covered the spread in a remarkable 60% of their games (108-72-2 ATS) in the 2010s, easily the best mark in the league — despite bookmakers inflating lines in an effort to catch up with Bill Belichick’s covering machine. Belichick and the Patriots always stayed one step ahead.
• New England was favored on average by 6.8 points during the decade, nearly double the Green Bay Packers, who had the second-highest average spread at 3.8, according to research by ESPN Stats & Information.
• The Patriots covered those inflated point spreads by an NFL-best 3.5 points.
• The Patriots did not have a losing ATS record in any regular season this decade and were underdogs in a league-low 15 games. The Packers were underdogs in 40 games, the second fewest of the decade.
• New England went 12-3 ATS as underdogs and went 49-29-2 ATS at home this decade.
“They have been a thorn for us for a long time,” Alan Berg, senior oddsmaker for Caesars Sportsbook, said.
Week after week,…