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BOSTON (CBS) - The WBZ-TV, 98.5 The Sports Hub and WBZ NewsRadio 1030 Sports teams make their prediction for Sunday night’s Patriots-Falcons matchup.
Scott Zolak, 98.5 The Sports Hub
As much as they say they don’t listen and hear things in Foxboro, there has been a lot said about this defense not getting credit for the lack of competition they’ve faced. They make the games, you line up and you play them.
I look for the disrepect that has been played towards the defense to help carry this team, and the Patriots will grind out another one and pick up a big win to go 4-0.
Patriots 27, Falcons 21
TALE OF THE TAPE: Patriots vs. Falcons
Andy Gresh, 98.5 The Sports Hub
The Georgia Dome is a tough game to play, but the Falcons offense is dinged up with Roddy White hobbled and without Stephen Jackson.
The big test for the Patriots defense is taking care of Julio Jones. If they do that, they have a chance to win this game.
The Patriots need to score 24 to be able to win, and ultimately I think they eek out a close win by two.
Patriots 24, Falcons 22
Walt Perkins, WBZ NewsRadio 1030
I have a hunch this is the week Patriots’ fans see Rob Gronkowski return to action. The tight end’s return from off-season surgeries will be a big boost to the offense when he does get back on the field.
The Patriots continue to get better each week, and this Sunday should be no exception.
Patriots 30, Falcons 17
Dan Roche, WBZ-TV Sports
The Patriots have a lot going against them Sunday night in Atlanta. The Georgia Dome is a tough place to play as the Falcons are 34-7 under Coach Mike Smith there. Matt Ryan is a top tier QB, which the Pats haven’t faced yet this season. He also has a suitable amount of weapons to use in Julio Jones, Tony Gonzalez, Roddy White, Jason Snelling, and others.
The Pats are getting healthier on offense with the expected return of Ron Gronkowski. This will be another test for the rookie receivers as far as crowd noise and a big game atmosphere goes. It should serve as another valuable lesson.
The Falcons aren’t great, but are the best team the Pats have faced so far this season. I like the Falcons by just a bit.
Falcons 24, Patriots 20
Levan Reid, WBZ-TV Sports
So for the first time this season the Pats will have a very tough test. How will their defense hold up to a veteran attack?
Matt Ryan and his Falcons offense understand how to move the ball and how to attack defenses. Don’t let the 1-2 record fool you, this team is top notch. The wide outs are pro bowlers, the tight end is a hall of famer and the QB is elite. The Pats defense will have their toughest test come Sunday night.
Tom Brady will definitely get a chance to see where his offense stands. The Georgia Dome is going to be loud, and everybody is going to have to be on the same page. For the Pats to quiet down that dome, they are going to have to sustain drives. This will be another test.
This game is a water mark for the Patriots. Win or lose, they will know where they rate against one of the top teams in the NFL.
There’s too much talent and experience on paper for me not to take the Falcons.
Falcons 24, Patriots 20
Tune in to Patriots-Falcons on 98.5 The Sports Hub — the flagship station of the New England Patriots! Pregame coverage begins at 5:30 p.m. with a full postgame show following the game. On WBZ-TV, tune in to Patriots GameDay at 11:30 a.m., and Patriots 5th Quarter immediately following the game!