NFL BettingSome pretty important sports betting news came out of the first New England Patriots preseason game last week against the New Orleans Saints. The Patriots were looking forward to wide receivers Torry Holt and Randy Moss giving quarterback Tom Brady the passing attack needed to push the Patriots to the Super Bowl. The New England passing game, and the Patriots Super Bowl hopes, took a huge hit last week as Torry Holt is out for the season with a knee injury.

The severity of the injury on the NFL betting world is obvious, but the potential effect of the injury on Holt’s career has not been as widely publicized. This knee injury could end Holt’s career at the age of only 34. Holt and the Patriots will know more about the wide receiver’s progress after he starts rehabilitation on his surgically repaired knee. Until then, the Patriots need another receiver in their passing game.

The Patriots are not well-known for betting on college football players to step up in key spots, but now that Terrell Owens has found a home the Pats may have to give third-round pick wide receiver Taylor Price a closer look. Price ran a 4.41 40-yard dash and showed a vertical leap of 37 inches in the combine. He has the skills, he just does not have the experience

The Atlanta Falcons were handed a lot of nice surprises in their opening preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Rookie quarterback John Parker Wilson threw for 80 yards on eight completions in his limited playing time in the third quarter. Corner back Shann Schillinger, a sixth-round pick out of Montana, returned an interception for a touchdown that sealed the game for the Falcons. The Falcons first-team starters also looked excellent in a 20-10 preseason win over the Chiefs.

Preseason games rarely have an effect on the Super Bowl odds for any team, but the Holt injury will lower the odds that the Patriots will win Super Bowl XLV this season. The continued good play of the Falcon’s draft picks, especially on defense, can help the Falcons’ odds for winning the Super Bowl this season.

In this game the Patriots will be taking a long look at their rookie receivers. A lot of mistakes will be made by nervous rookies that know the spotlight is on them. Randy Moss will be on an island again, and it will be difficult to get the ball to him with these hungry rookie defensive backs of Atlanta looking to make the team.

As preseason games go, this one is incredibly important for the Patriots. If they cannot find a replacement for Holt already on their roster, then they will need to go to the free agent market to get one. Now a team may finally be disappointed that Terrell Owens is no longer available on the open market. The other receivers available right now are not up to the quality of a Torry Holt, and that will hurt the Patriots this season.

Gambling Advisor Pick: Atlanta Falcons 21-3

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