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Friday, October 7, 2011
ESPN's Patriots-Jets prediction roundup

By ESPNBoston.com

A roundup of how ESPN's analysts see Sunday’s Patriots-Jets game playing out:

PatriotsJets* ESPNBoston.com Patriots analyst Tedy Bruschi: Patriots 31, Jets 21. I think Rob Gronkowski will be big in this game. Rex Ryan will do his best to take away Wes Welker and that's when Brady will look to his big tight end. Gronkowski will win versus the Jets safeties and linebackers. The Patriots' defense will continue to struggle, especially with the loss of Jerod Mayo, but I don't think Mark Sanchez has what it takes to put enough points on the board. As long as the Patriots don't let the Jets' defense and special teams ruin the game they will win.

* ESPNBoston.com’s Mike Reiss: Patriots 27, Jets 24 (OT). This is the Jets' third road game in a row, so you give the Patriots the edge there. I think the Jets will play a good defensive game against an offensive scheme they are know quite well, and thus, I envision the Patriots' streak of scoring 30 or more points coming to an end in this one. On the flip side, I still have questions about the Patriots' defense, and when factoring in the growing team's growing injury list, I see a very close game. Let's call an overtime game, with Stephen Gostkowski delivering a dramatic game-winning field goal in the extra session.

* ESPNBoston.com’s Chris Forsberg: Patriots 24, Jets 20. Given the Patriots' struggles (and injuries) in the secondary, a Jets return to "ground and pound" would likely be welcomed with open arms. But here's guessing the Jets continue to air it out, especially given the Patriots' lack of a pass rush, and that's enough to keep it close until the end. New England's 12-game streak with 30-plus points ends, but no one laments it in a win.

* ESPNBoston.com columnist Jackie MacMullan: Patriots 24-17. Where's that vaunted Jets defense been?

* ESPNBoston.com’s Mike Rodak: Patriots 24, Jets 21. A banged-up Patriots team continues to wobble its way through the early season schedule, squaring off a Jets team fresh off two straight losses. Quarterback Tom Brady continues his impressive 2011 campaign, while the opportunistic Patriots defense takes advantage of mistakes by Sanchez.

* ESPN Boston Radio’s Adam Jones: Patriots 35, Jets 27. The Patriots simply don't lose regular season games in Foxborough with Tom Brady as their quarterback (it hasn't happened since 2006). Both teams score five times, but the Jets are forced to settle for field goals. I've got a hunch that Shaun Ellis handles his first action against his former club better than Richard Seymour did last week.

* ESPN Boston Radio’s Andrew Brooks: Patriots 31, Jets 13. Perhaps I overreacted a bit thinking the Raiders would actually beat the Patriots. I won't make that mistake again ... not when Adam reminds me basically on a daily basis that Brady hasn't lost at Gillette Stadium in the regular season since 2006. The Jets have really struggled the last two weeks and I expect that trend to continue. They'll be able to put up yards against the Patriots just like everyone else but they aren't good enough to win on the road here.

* ESPN NFL analyst Damian Woody: Patriots win. I don’t know the score but I think the Patriots will win because, for one, they really play well at Gillette. They are hard to beat at home. And I don’t think the offense the Jets have can keep pace with New England. Tom Brady is in such a zone with his receivers and what they’re doing offensively. The Jets are not in sync offensively. I don’t think they can keep pace.

* ESPN experts: All eight pick the Patriots.

* Sunday Countdown: Mike Ditka, Tom Jackson and Cris Carter pick the Patriots. Keyshawn Johnson and picks the Jets.

* AccuScore simulations: Patriots 32, Jets 19 (on average). Patriots win 77 percent of more than 10,000 simulations. You can simulate the game yourself here.

* Madden 12 simulation: Patriots 34, Jets 24. Tom Brady is looking to make a statement with this game. How's four touchdown passes for an opening remark? That's right, Brady and crew put up 24 in the first half, and at one point lead the game 34-10 before Mark Sanchez leads a Jets comeback that falls just short as New York runs out of time after scoring 14 in the fourth. Another crazy game between these two heated rivals.

* Ken Moll, Scouts Inc. (Insider): Patriots 24, Jets 20

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* What's your prediction for Patriots-Jets? Leave it in the comments section of this blog post.