New England Patriots vs. Oakland Raiders odds: Picks from expert who's 9-4 on Patriots games

The 7-2 New England Patriots and 4-5 Oakland Raiders meet in Mexico City on Sunday. The defending Super Bowl champs are touchdown favorites, up two points from an open of five.

The over-under, or total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, is 55, up sharply from an open of 50.

Before you make any bets on a game like this with so much Vegas odds movement, you'll want to hear what SportsLine Senior Analyst Larry Hartstein has to say.

Hartstein has his finger on the Patriots' pulse. In fact, he's 9-4 picking their games since the start of last season.

Part of his success: Hartstein has a vast network of Vegas sources and has been covering the industry as a sportswriter and analyst for two decades. Anyone who has followed his picks is up big.

Hartstein knows the Raiders are especially weak defending passes to running backs and tight ends. Now they face a New England team that's the best in the league at that.

Patriots running back Rex Burkhead has broken out the past two games, hauling in 10 catches for almost 100 yards and a touchdown. He has added over 50 yards on the ground.

Quarterback Tom Brady leads the league in passing yards (2,807), is second to Carson Wentz in touchdowns (19) and is second to Alex Smith in quarterback rating (108.3). He's fresh off tossing three touchdowns at Denver.

But just because the Patriots have been hot doesn't mean they cover a large seven-point spread, especially at an unfamiliar neutral site.

The Raiders are well-rested coming off their bye week and face a Patriots team that played at altitude last week at Mile High. New England stayed on the road in Colorado before heading down to Mexico City.

Oakland has scored at least 27 points in two of its past three games and quarterback Derek Carr has put up at least 300 yards in three straight. Running back Marshawn Lynch finally got going two weeks ago, rumbling for his third and fourth scores of the season.

And the Raiders have played in Mexico City before, defeating the Houston Texans there last November. They'll have a distinct advantage knowing exactly what to expect at rowdy Estadio Azteca, which has a seating capacity of 87,000.

Hartstein is leaning toward the over on Sunday, but what about the spread, which he has made his name picking?

He knows there's a huge x-factor that ultimately determines the point-spread winner for Patriots-Raiders. And he's sharing it over at SportsLine.

So which side should you back in Patriots-Raiders? Visit SportsLine now to see what big x-factor determines which side of Patriots-Raiders you need to be all over, all from the expert who is gunning for his 10th win in his last 14 Patriots picks, and find out.

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