The New England Patriots look to repeat as champions following a (11-5) 2018 season. QB Tom Brady comes off of a 29TD 11 Int season and a Super Bowl MVP, but has lost his most reliable weapon in future Hall of Fame TE Rob Gronkowski. Bill Belichick has tried to get back that production in the drafting of explosive WR N’Keal Harry out of Arizona State and the signings of TE Ben Watson and possible X-factor 4 time pro-bowler Demaryius Thomas. On defense, the Patriots boded the 6th best ppg defense in 2018, but lost DE Trey Flowers in free agency. Week 1 is where the new look Patriots start their quest for a repeat at home against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Week 1 vs Pittsburgh Steelers
The Patriots beat the Steelers last year at Heinz field 27-24 and I expect a similar outcome. With the loss of WR Antonio Brown in free agency, WR Ju Ju Smith Shuster will be the primary target. Head Coach Bill Belichick finds a way to neutralize him in this one leading to a Pats win at home, where they almost never lose.
Week 2 at Miami Dolphins
Although the Patriots have struggled at Miami the past few years, this is a different Miami team. They have no identity and are in full rebuild mode. Talent prevails as the Pats win.
Week 3 vs New York Jets
The Pats have owned the Jets since the Belichick/Brady era began. The Patriots are 14-2 in their last 16 games against the Jets spanning to 2011, not losing at home in the process. As the Jets are still trying to gain their footing on a new offense the Pats win at home.
Week 4 vs Buffalo Bills
The Patriots destroyed the Bills during the 2018 season with 23-3 and 37-16 wins. The addition of DT Ed Oliver won’t be enough to get after Tom Brady as the Pats win in a route.
Week 5 at Washington Redskins
The Redskins are still trying to figure things out as they have two options at QB in Case Keenum and first round draft pick Dwayne Haskins. At this point I see Keenum still behind center and adding to his 15 interceptions in the 2018 season on a way to another Pats win.
Week 6 vs New York Giants
With probably the worst roster in football and in full rebuild mode the Giants come into this season with low expectations. This seems warranted as their only remaining weapon is RB Saquon Barkley to pair with an aging Eli Manning. Talent wins as the Pats defense shuts down this abysmal offense.
Week 7 at New York Jets
I see this as a repeat of week 3 as the Jets are unable to crack the Patriots code.
Week 8 vs Cleveland Browns
Although I believe in the massive hype surrounding the Cleveland Browns with the addition of WR Odell Beckham Jr to pair with their many weapons, it is almost impossible to win at Foxborough, as the Pats didn’t lose a game during the 2018 season. New coach Freddie Kitchens gets a wakeup call in this one.
Week 9 at Baltimore Ravens
I believe the loss of DE Trey Flowers looms large in this one, as they are unable to maintain Lamar Jackson within the pocket, as well as stop RB Melvin Ingram from getting open in space in a Pats loss.
Week 10 Bye
Week 11 at Philadelphia Eagles
With this game coming at the end of tough games against the Cleveland Browns and Ravens, the Pats will be beat up traveling to Philadelphia. I see Carson Wentz being the Carson Wentz of 2017 and exposing a Patriots secondary with his new weapon Desean Jackson to a win.
Week 12 vs Dallas Cowboys
QB Dak Prescott and company struggled on the road to a (3-5) record in the 2018 campaign. The Patriots are also 3-0 vs the Cowboys at home since 1987, so I am siding with the Pats in this one.
Week 13 at Houston Texans
Although this game is on the road, Houston coach Bill O Brien has been unable to beat his mentor going (0-5) since 2015. I see this trend continuing as the Pats win.
Week 14 vs Kansas City Chiefs
In an AFC Championship rematch Patrick Mahomes and company travel to Foxborough. The Patriots pulled out a shocker in the AFC Championship game, being an offside penalty away from headed home. I see the Patriots being unable to stop the reigning MVP QB Patrick Mahomes, and the newly revamped defense led my Steve Spagnuolo and new DE Frank Clark providing relief to a rare Pats loss at home.
Week 15 at Cincinnati Bengals
The Cincinnati Bengals are a questionable team for this upcoming season as they have a new head coach, a turnover prone QB in Andy Dalton, and an injury prone top target in AJ Green. I see the Bengals having nothing to play for at this point and the Patriots winning with ease.
Week 16 vs Buffalo Bills
Tom and Bill outplay and coach Allen and McDermott for a series sweep.
Week 17 vs Miami Dolphins
The Patriots will be fighting for top seeding in the playoff race while playing at home, resulting in an easy win.
This line shocks me as the Patriots have over 11 wins in 8 of their past 9 seasons and have went over their projected win total in 13 of the last 17 seasons. Take the over.