Bill Belichick
Head coach Bill Belichick looks on during a practice session on Feb. 2, 2017 in Houston before leading the New England Patriots into Super Bowl LI as Super Bowl favorites. Getty Images

With both teams playing so well heading into Super Bowl LI, the point spread is among the lowest in the game’s history. The New England Patriots are three-point favorites over the Atlanta Falcons as of Friday morning at Las Vegas and online sportsbooks, via OddsShark, and that isn’t likely to change before Sunday.

The betting line has remained the same for nearly two weeks. New England was giving Atlanta three points shortly after they won the AFC Championship Game on Jan. 22.

There has been a slight change at some betting websites. Instead of Atlanta +3 having -110 odds (risk $110 to win $100), which is the case at most casinos, some sportsbooks like 5Dimes have the odds at -107. That indicates the betting public is siding with the Patriots.

It’s a very familiar position for the Patriots, who have been favored in every game since Week 4. With Jimmy Garoppolo starting at quarterback in place of the suspended Tom Brady, New England was a one-point underdog at home against the Houston Texans on Sept. 22. The Patriots ended up winning 27-0.

Atlanta was favored by more than a field goal in both of their home playoff games, and it’s been a while since they were last underdogs. When the Falcons visited the Seattle Seahawks in October, they lost by two points as 6.5-point underdogs.

Sunday’s game is expected to be a competitive, high-scoring affair, but the two teams haven’t been playing many close contests of late. During Atlanta’s six-game winning streak, they have five wins of at least 16 points. New England won both of their playoff games by at least 18 points, and they’ve won seven games in a row by at least a touchdown.

Two of the last three Super Bowls have been decided by 14 points or more, with the exception coming in New England’s four-point victory over Seattle in 2015. All six New England Super Bowls in the Brady-Belichick era have been decided by four points or less. Atlanta was defeated by 15 points when they made their only Super Bowl appearance in franchise history 18 years ago.

Underdogs have been victorious in the last five Super Bowls.

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