Tom Brady had another great season. Flickr/http://bit.ly/1KCE5EA/ Keith Allison
Tom Brady had another great season. Flickr/http://bit.ly/1KCE5EA/ Keith Allison

Much like the knee-jerk reactions from last year, the New England Patriots once again have diminished odds after Tom Brady’s suspension.

It’s deja vu in several circles related to the NFL, including those who gamble on the sport for a living.

A little more than a year ago when Brady was first suspended for deflategate, New England’s Super Bowl odds dipped slightly, while its opening line against Pittsburgh shifted from 6.5 points to 1 point. Eventually Brady came back and wasn’t suspended, putting those lines┬áback to the original number.

Oddsmakers have shifted their opinions again in response to the suspension coming back to the table. Upon news that Brady would be suspended for the first four games of the 2016 season, sports books moved the Patriots from overwhelming Super Bowl favorites at +600 to +900 and behind the Seattle Seahawks at +850.

New England still owns the best odds in the AFC despite Brady’s possible absence in the first four games, slightly better than the Pittsburgh Steelers at +1000.

The Super Bowl odds were not the only numbers to take a dip for the Patriots. One sportsbook that has re-released its line on the New England vs. Arizona game has moved the game from a pick ’em line to a 5.5-point advantage in favor of the Cardinals.

The most interesting aspect of Brady’s suspension is a prop bet featuring an over/under amount of wins by the Patriots if Brady doesn’t suit up for the first games. The number is listed at 1.5, with Jimmy Garoppolo taking the snaps at Arizona and at home against Miami, Houston and Buffalo.

To me, that’s a slam dunk for the over. Having a dynamic, franchise quarterback is important for teams to be consistently good. Look around the NFL and try to find a team without an above-average, consistent quarterback play, that has continued success.

To achieve short-term success, having a great quarterback isn’t necessary. That’s also been proven in several cases. With three games at home and still a team capable of being one of the best teams in AFC, the Patriots should be considered a safe pick to at least go 2-2.

Book the over if Brady misses the four games and the line remains at 1.5.

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