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Underdog Colts hosting rival Patriots on SNF

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(OddsShark.com) The Indianapolis Colts will be looking to avenge their loss in last season’s AFC Championship Game and end a six-game straight-up losing streak against New England when they host the Patriots on Sunday night as 10-point betting underdogs at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

The Colts have finally gotten their season on track after opening with a pair of stunning losses to the Buffalo Bills and the New York Jets, posting three straight SU victories, including last week’s 27-20 win over Houston. That result also earned them their first win of the season against the spread, as they downed the Texans while pegged as 4.5-point underdogs.

Indianapolis has been getting it done despite being without star quarterback Andrew Luck, who has been sidelined with a shoulder injury since the club’s 35-33 win over the Tennessee Titans in Week 3.

Luck had struggled before suffering the injury, tossing seven interceptions against just five touchdown passes.

Veteran Matt Hasselbeck has run the offense in Luck’s absence, but after throwing in practice on Thursday there looks to be an increasing likelihood that the 26-year-old will return to action in Sunday’s Patriots vs. Colts betting matchup at Lucas Oil Stadium.

That is welcome news for the Colts, who were pummeled 45-7 by New England in last season’s AFC Championship Game and have averaged just 19.8 points per game this season.

The Patriots roll into Indianapolis after another dominant performance last week, crushing the hobbled Dallas Cowboys by a 30-6 score. The SU victory was New England’s seventh straight, and improved them to 5-0-1 ATS in their past six games according to the OddsShark NFL Database.

Quarterback Tom Brady has clearly left his offseason troubles behind him, throwing for 11 touchdowns over the Patriots’ first four outings and leading the NFL with a 121.5 passer rating and 347 passing yards per game.

New England also sits third in the league in points scored with 149 despite playing just four games so far this season, and have claimed victory in their four contests by an average margin of over 18 points.

The Patriots have also dominated Indianapolis in recent meetings, winning six straight while picking up ATS victories in each of their last four. However the Colts are 3-1 SU in their last four at home against New England.

Bennett doesn’t fear backlash for skipping White House trip

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HOUSTON (AP) Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett says he is not worried about upsetting team owner Robert Kraft by not attending New England’s trip to the White House as Super Bowl champions.

Bennett said after the Patriots’ 34-28 win over the Falcons on Sunday night that he’s “not going to go” to the traditional meet-and-greet with the president. It will be the first visit of a Super Bowl champion to Washington since Donald Trump was sworn into office.

Trump’s positions have alienated some athletes, which has raised questions about whether some might choose to skip the trip while the new president is in office.

But Bennett said he isn’t concerned about it and thinks the team believes “in whatever I want to do.”

Kraft is a supporter of Trump and attended a celebration dinner in Washington for him the night before his inauguration.

Patriots’ Tom Brady earns 4th Super Bowl MVP trophy with epic comeback

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HOUSTON (AP) The greatest quarterback in NFL history led the biggest Super Bowl comeback to be the MVP on Sunday night.

Tom Brady rallied New England from a 25-point third-quarter deficit for a 34-28 win over the Atlanta Falcons in the first overtime game in Super Bowl history to earn his fifth Super Bowl title and fourth MVP trophy.

“They’re all sweet,” he said. “They’re all different and this was just an incredible team and I’m just happy to be a part of it,” he said.

Brady threw touchdown passes of 5 and 6 yards in the second half and tied things at 28-28 when he connected withDanny Amendola on a 2-point conversion with 57 seconds left.

He then directed the drive in overtime which ended with a 2-yard run by James White to make the Patriots the first team to win a Super Bowl after trailing by more than 10 points.

“We all brought each other back,” he said. “We never felt out of it. It was a tough battle.”

His performance certainly wasn’t without its struggles. His incredible second half and overtime came after a first half where the Patriots managed just three points and he threw an interception which Robert Alford returned 82 yards for a touchdown. He was hurried and harassed for much of the games. The Falcons sacked him five times and hit him on another eight occasions.

He noted the beating he took when he was trying to recount the details of the comeback and couldn’t remember what the score was at one point in the rally.

“There was a lot of (stuff) that happened tonight,” he said. “I got hit pretty hard.”

His 466 yards passing are a Super Bowl record, surpassing the 414 yards Kurt Warner had 17 years ago. He also set a record for most passes completed in a Super Bowl with 43 and most attempts with 62.

He is the first to play in seven Super Bowls and the victory ties him with Charles Haley for most Super Bowl rings.

After all Brady has done in his career, was this his finest moment?

“Tom’s had a lot of great ones,” coach Bill Belichick said. “But, yeah tonight was one of them.”

It’s a triumphant end to a difficult season for Brady, who missed the first four games because of his “Deflategate” suspension and dealt with his mother Galynn Brady suffering through an undisclosed illness. The Super Bowl was the first game she’s attended all season.

“They’re all happy,” he said fighting back tears. “It’s nice to have everybody here and it’s going to be a great celebration tonight.”

He shared a quick moment with her right after the game, but was looking forward to more time with her in the upcoming days.

“It’s kind of madness after the game so I didn’t get much quality time with her but we’ll get it this week,” he said.

But he certainly wasn’t asking for sympathy for his rough road to this title though, chuckling when someone asked about the adversity the Patriots have gone through in the past couple of years.

“We’ve done pretty good over the last few years … so I don’t think anyone’s feeling bad for the Patriots,” he said. “I don’t think anyone feels bad for the Patriots.”

Brady also collected the MVP trophy in 2001, 2003 and 2014.

“It was just a lot of mental toughness by our team and we’re going to remember this one for the rest of our lives,” Brady said.

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