“It’s The Youngin & The Vet”

AFC Game Of The Week

New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills

Patriots: This start shouldn’t be a surprise to you or anyone else. Usually in September, the New England Patriots are figuring it out and month by month, the October Patriots are better than September’s team, November’s Patriots are better than the October version then when December comes around, they’re playing their best football with having everything locked up for January. They sit at 3-0 for the first time since 2015. I’ve seen my fair share of Patriots football over the years with each team being different or one side of the football was stronger than the other. That’s not the case with this group that Bill Belichick has. With their offense, the offensive line is a group of bullies playing grown man football by simply dominating the line of scrimmage, their running game is the best it’s been in years. Sony Michel has had a strong impact on this offense. When they run the ball and make it a point of emphasis to pound the rock, they’re even scarier because no team can stop it. Their passing game has always been one of the best and the receiving core is just fine even without a certain someone who’s initials are “AB”. Julian Edelman, Josh Gordon and Philip Dorsett are more than serviceable. What’s grabbed my attention has been their defense which has always seemed to struggle early on in seasons past. They held the Steelers to a field goal in week one, they shut the Dolphins out in week two and they imposed their will once again in week three against the Jets. Each of this unit has not one weakness. The defensive line is strong with guys who clog up lanes and rush the passer, the group of linebackers is healthy for once and they limit everything over the middle and across the board, the secondary handles business. On Sunday, they’ll travel to a place where they’ve had their way for many years in Orchard Park, New York.

Bills: Out of every team that’s yet to lose a game, this is probably the biggest shocker of them all. Heading into the first quarter mark of the season, there’s no way you’d be saying to yourself that the Buffalo Bills are 3-0 right now. I get they beat the Jets, Giants and Bengals, but you take what you can get, and a win is a win the other day. This is their first 3-0 start since 2011 and this fast start is due to contributions on both sides of the football. It starts with Josh Allen. So far on the young season, he’s shown his dual-threat capability throwing for 750 yards passing and three touchdown passes along with 105 yards rushing with his feet. Buffalo’s running game has really carried the offense averaging 151 yards on the ground this year. Compared to last season, I’m seeing a completely different ballclub. I see more effort all around and they’ve done the small things the correct way such as finishing their blocks, a balanced attack on offense and consistent play from Josh. Buffalo had to grind that game out on Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals. It wasn’t as simple as the experts said it’d be. The Bills defense has really flown under the radar. I get they blew a big lead in week three, but Sunday was their 15th straight game that they held an opponent under 400 yards of total offense which is an accomplishment of itself. This is the longest active streak in the NFL now. If they want to get to 4-0, they will have to take down the defending Super Bowl champs to do so.

Patriots Player to Watch: Philip Dorsett– I really like what he brings to this offense. He’s a further developed Julian Edelman and what I mean by this is he’s the same size as Jules, but Philip can do more than number 11. Jules is more of that underneath guy whereas Dorsett can play in the slot, get over the top and next to Josh Gordon, he gives Tom another weapon down the field.

Bills Player to Watch: Cole Beasley– If you watch football, what’s the one thing the Patriots are known for doing? Taking away who your number one offensive options are. This is where Cole comes in because they’ll do everything to make sure Zay Jones or John Brown don’t get their looks. Cole is the ultimate chain mover and I see Josh Allen looking his way quite a bit on Sunday.

Final Analysis: The Patriots defense is playing at a level that we haven’t seen in years. They held the Steelers to three, shut out the Dolphins and gave up 14 to the Jets. New England has yet to give up an offensive touchdown this year. Now, this’ll be one of the better offenses they’ve seen this year. This could be a challenge for the Pats, especially with some banged up wide receivers and no Gronkowski but in years past, Brady has done just fine with the weapons he has around him even with his top targets out. The Bills must try to hit Tom and get him off his rhythm without blitzing. Loading the box just gives him the opportunities to change the play. Devin Singletary comes back at the right time. They were high on this guy so much they decided to release Shady McCoy for him. The Patriots have dominated the Bills over the years, especially in Orchard Park.

Prediction: Patriots 26 Bills 20