The game between the Patriots and the Buccaneers will be kicking off in less than 30 minutes!
The Patriots are trying to go 3 – 0 while the Bucs are looking for their first win of the season, but don’t let their records fool you. The Bucs lost in the final seconds against the Jets and the Saints. The Patriots have survived the final minutes against the Bills and the Jets.
I expect to see Tom Brady throw away from Darrelle Revis today. If Revis is on Edelman then Edelman won’t have as many receptions but if Revis isn’t then Edelman will be big in this game again. Brady will need to continue throwing to the rookies, especially Dobson and hope they will not have a repeat performance from the Jets game. Dobson is the key on offense for New England to score. I believe if Dobson isn’t dropping passes and getting open like he did against the Jets then the Patriots will win this game, if he doesn’t step up, New England is in real trouble. The rookies, Boyce, Dobson, and Thompkins are the key to success in this game. One of them has to step up for New England’s offense to be successful and to win.
It would be nice to see Stevan Ridley get back to 2012 form but I don’t expect him rushing for 100 yards today, although I do see him getting a score. The running game for either team won’t be effective. The Bucs run defense will probably keep the Patriots rush in check for the game, and the Patriots stout rush defense will do the same to Martin. The rush defense has to stop Martin to make Tampa Bay one dimensional and depend on Josh Freeman.
Today will determine how good the Patriots secondary is. Mike Williams vs Dennard, and Jackson vs Talib is must see T.V. The Patriots corners will be tested and if they want an easy road to victory then shutting down the top two targets for Freeman will do that. The coaches for Tampa Bay don’t trust Freeman and the disconnect may continue to cost them but Freeman needs to be comfortable out there and rely on his big targets to regain his form at the QB spot. Freeman has the abilities to do it but can he and will he?
Freeman isn’t as much of a threat to run as EJ Manuel and Geno Smith were so will New England blitz more? Today will tell me if New England has any kind of pass rush. If the Patriots blitz often, I Am intrigued by Hightower and Mayo rushing the QB and if they will be effective. I don’t think New England has to get to Freeman often in order for the team to win because the secondary has been so strong, but it will make me feel more comfortable going forward the rest of the season.