BOSTON (CBS) – The CBSBoston sports team makes their predictions for the New England Patriots trip out west to take on the Oakland Raiders.
Andy Gresh, 98.5 The Sports Hub
Obviously the Patriots have to do a good job up front against the Raiders and make sure the run game doesn’t get going. I envision a little bit of the San Diego game plan where they kept everything in front of them, and the Charger’s run game didn’t really get on track.
The one thing the Patriots have to do very well is tackle. This is a week where they are going against bigger running backs and faster guys. If the first guy misses the tackle, which is a little bit of what happened in Buffalo, then they’re going to have a problem and give up a lot of extra yards.
But, the Seymour/Mankins matchup is the one to watch. Can Mankins or Brian Waters make sure that Richard Seymour doesn’t consistently push the pocket so Tom Brady doesn’t have a place to step up. They handle all that they’re going to win the game.
Prediction: Patriots 31-30
Scott Zolak, 98.5 The Sports Hub
Oakland is a team New England is very unfamiliar with since they haven’t played them since 2008.
I think the most intriguing matchup here is going to be Logan Mankins versus Richard Seymour. All talk is going to be about Richard Seymour.
The Pats need to go out there and survive that first wave, since the Raiders have two quality backs in Michael Bush and McFadden. McFadden runs up and down like Eric Dickerson (he’s a hall of famer from back in the day for all you youngsters). They have got to hit McFadden nice and low and they’ve got to hit and wrap. I’m concerned with the tackling, with these two safeties they’ve got now and the amount of yards they’re giving up on defense.
I’m not concerned with the offense. Brady and Co. are going to score points, and they’ll probably hit 30.
The question becomes, can they keep Oakland from scoring more than 30? That’s going to be the story of the game.
Prediction: Patriots 31-20
Walt Perkins, WBZ NewsRadio 1030
The Patriots face another up and coming team hungry for a belt notch, much like the Bills’ team that managed to squeak out a pair of 3-point wins against both New England and the Oakland Raiders.
In both cases, the game came down to who had the ball last. Last Sunday, if Patriots cornerback Devon McCourty does not hustle down field for a tackle at the one-yard line and allowed the Bills to score, I have no doubt that Tom Brady would have marched his troops down the field for the tie with the minute and a half he would have had on the clock.
In the Raiders, the Patriots face one of the best rushing teams in the NFL and the best statistically, averaging 131 yards per game.
Darren McFadden ate up Rex Ryan’s Jets last week to the tune of 171 yards and two touchdowns.
It seems in the NFL, the offense is way ahead of the defense in the early part of the season. Don’t expect that to change Sunday.
The Patriots will be without tight end Aaron Hernandez for the second straight week. Same with OL Sebastain Vollmer and DL Mike Wright. DL Albert Haynesworth was listed as Questionable on Friday’s participation report but he did not practice for the second straight day and usually, if you don’t practice during the week, you don’t play.
However, the team did add DL Gerard Warren and his presence should help up front.
Even without Hernandez, expect Tom Brady to light up the Silver and Black enough to make them the Black and Blue.
The team with the ball last wins. This week, that’s New England.
Steve Burton, WBZ-TV
New England could use a pick-me-up, and a Patriots win would help do just that.
Let’s start with a defense that hasn’t shown up all year. From the secondary that needs to bring it in coverage, to the defensive line that has to, sometime this year, come up with a pass-rush. This week would be the perfect week to do it.
Ochocinco needs to come alive. Run the right routes, and catch the ball. Be the Ocho we were expecting him to be.
As for Tom Brady, he gets a pass for last week’s four interceptions. But those picks have to go.
I expect Deion Branch, who went without a catch against the Bills, to come up big in Week 4. I’m hoping the Patriots will let Stevan Ridley run wild, since they had little to no rush attack last week. He could be a touchdown waiting to happen.
The Patriots can’t afford to take the Raiders lightly because they can sting you. Just ask the Jets.
Dan Roche, WBZ- TV
I think the Patriots face similar challenges this week against the Raiders that they have in their first three games. The big difference though is the Pats D will have to stop the run first. Darren McFadden is a dynamic offensive threat and makes the offense go. Jason Campbell needs to simply play mistake-free football and not try to win the game himself.
As for the Pats, Tom Brady just needs to keep doing what he’s done all season. Obviously he needs to stay away from the interceptions. If the Pats win the turnover battle, they win the game.
I like the Pats in another high scoring game, 31-21.
Levan Reid, WBZ-TV
I have gone back and forth on this game and finally I have come up with an answer. The Pats beat the Raiders.
I don’t expect Tom Brady to have another bad game; he’s just too good for that. Also, I think the Pats run the ball a little more this week, which should slow down the Raiders pass rush.
This game though will come down to the defense. The Patriots will put as many players in the box to slow Darren McFadden and the Raiders running attack, and that will force Jason Campbell to beat them. I like Campbell’s conservative play but that won’t win the game against the Patriots.
Pats win this game and come home 3-1 and get ready for two big games versus the Ryan brothers. Rex and the Jets and the Rob Ryan defense and the Cowboys.
Tune in to the Patriots-Raiders game Sunday at 4:15 pm on 98.5 The Sports Hub and WBZ-TV. Tune in to Patriots Gameday at 11:30am on WBZ-TV and The Sports Hub’s pregame coverage, beginning at 1:00 pm. After the game tune in to the Postgame show on 98.5, and to Patriots Fifth Quarter on TV38.