BOSTON (CBS) — The Patriots are out of their bye week and hitting the road.
The Pats will be in Denver this weekend to take on the Broncos, and they’ll remain in the thin air for much of next week before heading to Mexico City for a Week 11 tilt against the Oakland Raiders. The Patriots will play five of their next six games on the road.
Sunday’s game is between two teams heading in opposite directions. The Patriots have won four straight while the Broncos have dropped their last four after a 3-1 start. But Denver has been a difficult place for the Patriots to play, losing six of their last eight trips to the Mile High city since 2005 (including the playoffs).
While everything is pointing to a Patriots victory, you just never know when Belichick, Brady and company head to Denver. Here is how the CBS Boston Sports team predicts Sunday’s matchup playing out:
Steve Burton, WBZ-TV Sports
We all know the Patriots have had their issues in Denver, but that was when the Broncos were good. Now they can barely score, and their defense just gave up 51 points last week to Philadelphia.
The Patriots are coming off of their bye and Tom Brady is laser focused. They want to pick up where they left off, and keep their four-game win streak going.
Patriots 24, Broncos 10
Dan Roche, WBZ-TV Sports
This is one of those strange games. Everything says the 6-2 Pats should dominate the reeling 3-5 Broncos, who have lost four straight and five of their last six. Brock Osweiler threw two picks in Denver’s blowout 51-23 loss to Philly and was sacked three times, and the Broncos can’t run the ball. Defensively, they’re thin behind superstar Von Miller.
But, Tom Brady is 3-7 in Denver.
This is a great test to start the second half for New England. I like them to win, but I think it will be close.
Patriots 31, Broncos 27
Levan Reid, WBZ-TV Sports
The Patriots are coming off of their break and now start one of the toughest road stretches in their history. Five of their next six games are on the road starting Sunday in Denver, which has notoriously been a house of horrors for this team.
Here’s the situation though. When Tom Brady was talking about struggles in Denver, he mentioned it has always been because the Broncos have had good, tough teams. This Broncos team has an OK defense but right now they are not very tough or very good.
The Pats have a chance to beat the Broncos and possibly help end their season, which is exactly what’s going to happen. Even Dwayne Allen will get his first catch with the team.
Patriots 24, Broncos 10
Adam Kaufman, 98.5 The Sports Hub/WBZ NewsRadio 1030
Despite an offense that’s only managed about 22 points per game the last four, the Patriots have reeled off wins in all of ’em to take over first in the AFC East, and there’s little reason to think that streak will end to Brock Osweiler’s Broncos.
Sure, Tom Brady’s 3-7 in his career in Denver. Yes, the Pats have dropped six of their last eight trips to Mile High, including the postseason. Chris Hogan won’t play and, all right, that’s unfortunate. And, no, I won’t ignore the Broncos’ elite talents who’ve carried them to one of the league’s best defenses against both the pass and the run (though they rank 25th, permitting about 25 points per).
But, the Patriots have won 11 straight on the road and they’re coming off an extra week of rest. Plus, the Broncos are banged up along the O-line, Osweiler’s a marginally capable QB (at best), and Denver’s averaged around 10 points during a four-game rut that’s dropped the club to 3-5. On top of that, Stephon Gilmore’s healthy which, in spite of his unimpressive start, should help.
Five of New England’s next six will come outside of Foxborough, but the business trip should get off to a positive start.
Patriots 24, Broncos 14.
Mike “Sarge” Riley, 98.5 The Sports Hub/WBZ NewsRadio 1030
If the Patriots weren’t coming off the bye, I would have the Broncos in this game solely because the game is in Denver. I don’t care about the records; bottom line is their history at Mile High is not in the Patriots’ favor.
The Broncos D will give Tom Brady and the offense a little run for their money, but they won’t have much luck against the likes of Rob Gronkowski and the emerging backfield of the Patriots run game.
Good news for the Pats D: they were allowing an average of 30 points per game in the first four games of the season but allowed just over 12 points per game in their last four going into the bye.
As always in Denver, it won’t be easy, but the Pats will escape with a win.
Patriots 28, Broncos 20