AccuScore: How Tebow, Broncos can beat Patriots
Last week AccuScore laid out a plan for the Broncos to beat the Steelers. Denver executed to a tee, and the Broncos got the upset win in overtime. This week they face an even taller order as they travel to Foxborough to face the top-seeded Patriots.
Average AccuScore simulations favor New England to win 86 percent of the time by an average score of 35-18. Tim Tebow is projected to throw for 190 yards and slightly more touchdowns than interceptions. Tom Brady, on the other hand, is forecasted for nearly 330 yards and 2.7 touchdowns.
The high-scoring nature of the Patriots makes an upset this week less likely. Denver isn’t built to win games with scoring in the 30s. Tebow will need plenty of help from his defense and his backfield mate Willis McGahee in order to spring another upset and advance to the AFC championship game.
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If Tebow gets … 200+ passing yards, 2+ passing TD
This scenario occurs just 17 percent of the time, and illustrates that the Broncos are unlikely to beat the Patriots with Tebow throwing. Including last weekend, Tebow has reached these passing levels just twice this season. Even if he were to reach them again, Denver is still an 11 point underdog and wins just 20 percent of the time, an improvement of less than 6 percent. The Broncos need to run the football.
If Tebow gets … 50+ rushing yards, 1+ rush TD
This scenario is 17.6 percent likely to happen. Denver’s winning percentage doubles to 28.3 percent, and the average margin is cut to 8 points.
If Tebow gets … 100+ rushing yards, 1+ rush TD
This scenario is 5.3 percent likely to happen. Tebow has rushed for over 100 yards just once this season with a 113-yard performance in Week 9 against Oakland. His next best performance was 93 yards in Week 15 against the Patriots. In that game Tebow rushed for two scores and even threw for nearly 200 yards without an interception. Denver still lost by 18. This scenario shrinks the average margin to four points, and the Broncos win 40 percent of the time but remain significant underdogs. Tebow needs help from his teammates.
If Tebow gets … 50+ rushing yards, 1+ rush TD, Willis McGahee gets 50+ rushing yards, 1+ rush TD, AND the Denver defense forces at least 1 turnover
This scenario requires both Tebow and McGahee to have quality rushing games and the defense to come up with at least one turnover. All of this occurs 4.1 percent of the time in simulations and is the formula for Denver to win. In this scenario, the Broncos become 51.1 percent favorites and beat the Patriots by an average score of 32-31.
This week is an even bigger long shot for Denver to win since it’s on the road facing a healthy team with a high-scoring offense. Denver needs not only Tebow, but several of his teammates to make plays for the Broncos to have a chance.
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