Friday, December 21, 2012
ESPN Boston's picks: Patriots-Jaguars
Here's how ESPNBoston.com's experts see Sunday’s Patriots-Jaguars game (1 p.m. ET, on CBS) playing out. Our pundits see the Patriots winning this game by an average of 22 points. What's your prediction? Leave your pick in the comments section.
PATRIOTS 38, JAGUARS 10 I will be watching this game to see how the Patriots manage their players and the situation. Do they come out and want to re-establish their brand of football and get an overwhelming win and use next week as a bye week if they end up having to play on wild-card weekend? Also, I will be watching the running back rotation and the defensive backs. These next two weeks can be used to get additional player reps.
Mike Reiss (11-3)
PATRIOTS 41, JAGUARS 14 Tom Brady was talking about how, when the team loses, it makes for a long week. He said it feels like three years since they've won a game. That type of approach naturally sharpens a team's focus, and I expect the Patriots to come out strong in this game, put up some early points and roll to a victory.
Mike Rodak (12-2)
PATRIOTS 35, JAGUARS 20 The last time the Patriots traveled to Florida, they were in a closer-than-expected fight with the Miami Dolphins, earlier this month. It's a reminder that nothing is given in the NFL, especially on the road. But if the Patriots remind the Jaguars and their fans that they're a far superior team early in the game, it should be an in-and-out trip.
Field Yates (11-3)
PATRIOTS 42, JAGUARS 14 Make no mistake about it, there's a discrepancy in talent between the Patriots and Jaguars, but execution on Sunday is what matters. Coming off of a loss last Sunday night, look for the Patriots to bounce back in a major way in Week 16.
Madden 13 (9-5)
PATRIOTS 31, JAGUARS 10 Tom Brady continues to play like a man possessed, throwing for 318 yards and two touchdowns in the Patriots' 31-10 win over the Jaguars. New England jumps out to a 31-0 lead in this one before the Jags finally answer with 10 meaningless points in the final minutes. Brandon Lloyd and Wes Welker combine to catch 11 passes for 161 yards, including a 4-yard touchdown by Lloyd on the opening drive of the game.
PATRIOTS 31, JAGUARS 17 The Patriots won 84 percent of more than 10,000 AccuScore simulations. Tom Brady last week had more interceptions (2) than touchdown passes (1). The chance of him repeating that this week, according to simulations, is 7 percent. Even if it does happen, the Patriots are still 56 percent favorites over the Jaguars.
PATRIOTS OVER JAGUARS All 12 ESPN experts pick the Patriots to beat the Jaguars.