New England Patriots: Staff Predictions Week Three Vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Hal Bent:

New England Patriots mascot Pat Patriot Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

After the first two weeks of pure frustration, the New England Patriots offense is overdue to breakout.  Unfortunately, after playing the Bills playing the Jets defense, and then the real Jets defense, they face the best player on the Jets defense: cornerback Darrelle Revis.  The fact that Revis was upset about playing so much zone defense was  likely a by-product of his frustration in losing and not making a big play to win the game in typical Revis fashion.  He is going to be motivated enough just seeing #12 in a Patriots uniform and matching wits in one of the best chess matches in the NFL.

The Patriots get another week to get their young receivers some desperately needed playing time and repetitions with quarterback Tom Brady. Unfortunately, without tight end Rob Gronkowski, wide receiver Danny Amendola, and running back Shane Vereen, the offense does not have enough firepower to deal with Revis shutting down half the field. The defense has to focus on shutting down  running back Doug “Muscle Hampster” Martin and wide receiver Vincent Jackson (what happened to Mike Williams? He has been near invisible) while making Josh Freeman–who is playing for his job–creating scoring opportunities for the Patriots defense.

Somehow, I think the Patriots luck runs out this week and Tampa Bay pulls off the surprising upset like Arizona last season.

Prediction: New England Patriots 11 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers 13

OK, that’s the way we see the game ending up here at!

What do you think?