Chargers vs Patriots game preview
The Los Angeles Chargers visit five-time Super Bowl champions, Tom Brady and Bill Belichick and the defending AFC Champion New England Patriots in Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts this weekend in another exciting NFL playoff game. This is the first time the two teams have squared off since late October and first AFC Championship game since 2007. In that contest, the Patriots defeated the Chargers at home by a score of 21 to 13. The Chargers are in the playoffs for the first time since 2013 and looking forward for the first time since 1994 Super Bowl when they defeated to the 49ers.
Both teams have high-scoring offenses, and this could be a game full of rapidly changing scores. Both quarterback Tom Brady and Phil Rivers are veterans capable of leading their offensive units down the field in a hurry. The teams are very well matched in terms of offensive production.
Game: Los Angeles Chargers at New England Patriots
Start time: 1:05 p.m. EST
Date: Sunday, January 13
Formate: NFL divisional playoff round
Location: Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts
TV channel: CBS (free trial)
Why the Chargers will win:
Great pass rushing. The Chargers’ one-two combo of Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram have faced some of the best offenses in the league this year, and have been rather successful. They have been excellent at rushing the quarterback and forcing tipped and dropped passes all year. Enough defensive pressure on Brady and his crew can let the Los Angeles offense play a precision game this weekend.
The Patriots’ bubble may be bursting. While the Patriots are heavily favored in this game, they’re not near the dynasty that they used to be. Brady, tight end Rob Gronkowski, wide receiver Julian Edelman and other veterans on the team have started to show signs of age. They were not exactly road warriors this year, losing frustrating contests away from home this season at Detroit and Miami, to name a few. If one or more key players from the Patriots are injured or ineffective, the Chargers could grab an easy win.
Why the Patriots will win:
- Veteran experience. The Patriots have won their division for the last nine seasons in a row. They were the only team this year to win all of their home games. They have actually won their last fifteen home games, dating back to last season. Brady knows his offense very well. He coordinates very balanced running and passing attacks that are enough to stymie even the most powerful defensive lines. Coach Bill Belichick’s defense can also be very stingy, especially in terms of rushing yards allowed.
- Playoff experience. Most of the players on this year’s Patriot’s squad have seen action in the playoffs over the years. They know what it takes to win the important games. This is the Chargers’ first playoff game since 2014, and only their second playoff appearance in the last decade. Rivers also doesn’t have a lot of success against New England, winning only one of their last six matchups. While the Chargers are young and talented, many of the players on their roster have never faced the kind of pressure and expectations that this week’s game will have.
Many experts are predicting a low-scoring game, but a turnover or great special teams play could really turn the tides for either team. Both teams are well-run and are not prone to many mistakes on the field. The winner of this contest has a legitimate shot at winning it all, so it’s worth it to see how this one unfolds this weekend.
Los Angeles Chargers vs New England Patriots odds
The Chargers are currently 2-point favorites over the Patriots. According to the oddsshark.com is set at 25.5.