Patriots, Panthers sitting atop updated Super Bowl 50 odds

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After clinching a fifth straight berth in the AFC Championship Game the New England Patriots have returned to the top of the Super Bowl 50 odds, deadlocked with the Carolina Panthers at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

The Patriots halted a worrisome two-game straight-up losing streak with a 27-20 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs last weekend, covering as 6-point chalk for just their third against-the-spread win in their past nine outings.

New England now travels to Denver for Sunday afternoon’s Patriots vs. Broncos betting matchup as 3.5-point chalk and strong -170 moneyline favorites to earn a second straight Super Bowl berth, and their third in the last five years.

The Broncos enter the weekend on a 6-2 SU run following a 23-16 comeback win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, setting the stage for a rematch of the 2014 AFC Championship Game in which they claimed a 26-16 win as 4.5-point favorites.

But this time Denver sits as the underdog, sporting +400 odds of emerging as Super Bowl champions for the first time since 1999, and set at +140 to earn their second Super Sunday appearance in three years.

Denver has emerged victorious in two of their last three games against the Patriots, but has struggled overall, going 3-6 SU and ATS in their past nine meetings according to the OddsShark NFL Database.

In the NFC, the Carolina Panthers have seen their Super Bowl betting line rise dramatically on the strength of a 31-24 win over the Seattle Seahawks in their Divisional Playoff matchup. The Panthers won a league-leading 15 regular-season games, but lagged behind the Super Bowl favorites until closing the gap in early December.

Carolina has been particularly dominant at home, going 12-0 SU and 8-4 ATS in their past 12, and now sits as a -175 favorite to punch their ticket to their first Super Bowl since falling 32-29 to the Patriots in Super Bowl XXXVIII.

However, the Panthers must first get past the Arizona Cardinals, whom they face in this weekend’s NFC Championship Game at Bank of America Stadium as 3.5-point chalk.

The Cardinals finished second only to Carolina in the NFC regular season standings with a 13-3 SU record, and are 10-1 SU in their past 11 games including last weekend’s 26-20 win over the Green Bay Packers.

Arizona is a +145 underdog in just their second all-time NFC Championship Game appearance, and sit alongside the Broncos at +400 to claim the first Super Bowl title in franchise history.

Watch Denver Broncos vs. Indianapolis Colts live on TNF

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The Indianapolis Colts host the Denver Broncos on Thursday Night Football in a battle of two former contenders whose seasons have gone wrong.

Following a strong start, the Broncos went 1-8, as their typically astute defense has struggled to keep opponents out of the end zone. Denver’s offense has not helped the team’s cause either. The Broncos have failed to find clarity at quarterback with Trevor Siemian, Brock Osweiler, and Paxton Lynch all seeing time.

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The Colts have had their own deficiencies this season without star quarterback Andrew Luck. Jacoby Brissett has provided admirable coverage under center with 11 touchdowns and seven interceptions, but he has not been able to keep up with a Colts defense that has let up the second-most points in the NFL this season.

Football Night in America

Start time: 7:30 p.m. ET

TV channel: NBC

Live stream: NBCSports.com, NBC Sports app

Broncos vs. Colts

Start time: 8:30 p.m. ET

TV channel: NBC

Live stream: NBCSports.com, NBC Sports app

Watch Dallas Cowboys vs. Oakland Raiders live on SNF

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The Oakland Raiders host the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday Night Football as both teams look to keep their playoff hopes alive.

With a win, Dallas will maintain its chances of sneaking into the playoffs as a wild card. After struggling initially, Dak Prescott has been able to adjust to life without Ezekiel Elliott. Prescott threw for three touchdowns and a season-high 332 yards in the Cowboys win last week over the New York Giants.

If the Cowboys can hang around, Elliott can give them a boost when he returns from suspension next week heading into the final stretch of the season.

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The Raiders also find themselves in need of a win as they are in the middle of a contested AFC West battle with the San Diego Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs. Derek Carr and the Raiders’ offense will need to improve after dropping from the league’s sixth-best offense in 2016 to 19th this season.

Football Night in America

Start time: 7:00 p.m. ET

TV channel: NBC

Live stream: NBCSports.com, NBC Sports app

Cowboys vs. Raiders

Start time: 8:30 p.m. ET

TV channel: NBC

Live stream: NBCSports.com, NBC Sports app