There’s not a whole lot exciting on the field for Patriots
Good luck if you want to find some competitive on-field drama with the New England Patriots and a lot of other teams these days.
We’ve been stuck, really, with the Antonio Brown garbage that the Patriots brought on themselves. The games are secondary.
There’s no escape. You had to laugh when Patriots coach Bill Belichick tried to talk up the 0-2 Jets the other day. Now, sure, if Sam Darnold was playing quarterback this Sunday when Gang Green comes to Gillette Stadium, sure.
But evidently Darnold had been kissing too many fans and babies and picked up mononucleosis, so he’s been shelved for a few weeks. Then backup Trevor Siemian goes down for the season and presto! We’ll see the immortal Luke Falk on Sunday.
This will just add to what has simply been a non-competitive season thus far for the Patriots opponents, plus the myriad of horrible quarterbacks that the Jets have paraded through Foxborough the last few years. Darnold is obviously the best of them – he played last year in Todd Bowles’ last game as Jets coach – and to say that Ryan Fitzpatrick is the best of the rest over the last several years says something. Ugh.
“This is a big challenge for us,” Belichick said Friday before the Brown questions/circus started. “Obviously, coach (Adam) Gase hs doen a great job of game planning against us in the three years he was in Miami and caused us a lot of problems.”
Try not to laugh, either at that or this week’s seven picks:
PATRIOTS 52, JETS 3
The big question aside from anything Brown is whether this time Belichick takes Tom Brady off the field in the fourth quarter and lets rookie backup Jarett Stidham get some great handoff experience. Oh, wait, it’s the Jets; either Brady or Stidham will be still be throwing.
CHIEFS 38, RAVENS 35
A fantastic matchup that the Ravens nearly won a year ago in K.C. Well, they’re back, but the fact this game is in Arrowhead gives the Chiefs and Pat Mahomes the biggest advantage over Lamar Jackson. But it will go back and forth.
BILLS 27, BENGALS 10
We think Buffalo and quarterback Josh Allen are the real deal in terms of being a playoff contender. Now that may change, but they should beat Cincy and then head into next Sunday’s game in Orchard Park vs. the Patriots with a head of 3-0 steam. That might be a little more fun than lately, right?
SEAHAWKS 23, SAINTS 10
The poor Who Dats have turned into the Who Dey after losing Drew Brees, the best they can hope for is going .500 over the next six weeks or so until Brees comes back from thumb surgery. Pete Carroll’s crew is looking like what the Saints should have been, a Super Bowl contender.
BUCCANEERS 34, GIANTS 28
Ok fellow Big Blue fans, he we go: Daniel Jones should spark the offense, if he’s able to adjust to regular season football as opposed to preseason. But the Giants defense – the real problem with this team – is woeful, and last year you may remember Bucs QB Jameis Winston came off the bench and torched it. Expect that to continue.
FORTY-NINERS 24, STEELERS 17
Steelers shouldn’t be too bad off with their former third round choice, Mason Rudolph, but it may take him a while to get going. Meanwhile, this is Jimmy Garoppolo’s time to shine, and the Niners have scored 72 points in two games. Home team.
RAMS 27, BROWNS 24
Always tough for a west coast team to win in the east, but L.A.gets a few added hours to adjust with a Sunday night game. Browns , despite Odell Beckham, Jr.’s big plays, haven’t looked all that great otherwise. Rams QB Jared Goff could use a road signature win, and we think he’ll get it.
LAST WEEK: 4-3
Tom King may be reached at 594-1251 or email@example.com. Also, follow King on Twitter (@Telegraph_TomK).