New England @ Buffalo- Sunday 1PM ET
Forecast: Mostly Sunny 66
Dustin Hopkins K- Right groin- Out
EJ Manuel QB- Knee- Probable
New England Patriots:
New England Offense:
While many of the parts of previous Pats potent players (okay I've officially run out of ‘p' words) are gone, Tom Brady isn't. After a preseason knee scare that almost broke Twitter, Brady is locked and loaded with new weapons that ‘team hoodie' hopes can plug and play.
Brady is still a no-brainer and is basically match-up proof. 300+ yards and two touchdowns should get your season off to a decent start.
Look, the Bills are bad…and by bad I mean really bad. Stevan Ridley is an ‘A' starter and should toy with the Buffalo defense, topping the 120 yard mark on the ground and will find the endzone as well.
Shane Vereen was drafted heavily in flex and PPR leagues with the news he will be lining up in the slot a ton. He should creep near 70 combo yards but likely won't find the endzone.
How long will it take Brady to rind his new favorite target Danny Amendola? Charch doesn't think very long as he has him ranked #5. Neither do I. Amendola will find the endzone and should surpass 100 yards receiving in his Pats debut.
I love rookie Kenbrell Thompkins. I mean really, what's not to love. He'll approach 100 yards receiving in his first game.
Julian Edelman was supposed to be the ‘hype' guy but was quickly surpassed by Thompkins. He belongs on your bench.
Tight End Zach Sudfeld should get off to a good start this week with Gronk out until week 3. 50ish yards and a score in yet another Patriot debut.
Stephen Gostkowski is one of the most reliable legs in the NFL and with the Patriots in blowout mode, he is a solid play and should net double digit- points.
When we say start any and all Patriots, we pretty much mean it. The Pats DST ranks in the top three this week and will play mind games with a rookie quarterback and an offense that outside of anyone named CJ is completely overmatched.
Buffalo Bills Offense:
So this is what they meant with the term baptism by fire was rendered many years ago. I sort of feel bad for EJ Manuel…but not really. It will be a meh debut as he should top 220 yards and maybe will find the endzone. He could pick up 30+ rushing yards but won't score on the ground.
C.J. Spiller was a top five pick in most drafts and will be productive with 80ish yards on the ground and another 40+ through the air. If he scores, it will be on the ground.
Stevie Johnson is the one wide receiver (gulp) worth sliding in if you don't have another option. It will be tough sledding based on the fact he's got a rookie slinging him the rock. If Manuel throws a TD, it will be to little Stevie. Since he's not afraid of the big bad Pats, he'll find a way to get 75 yards, but not a ton more.
Wide receiver T.J. Graham and tight end Scott Chandler should be on your bench.
The Dan Carpenter tour continued after he was signed in Buffalo. The former Dolphin who will be making an appearance on a team near you is not startable.
Ditto that for the Buffalo DST. They will give up a minimum of 35 points and the only sack or turnover involved will be in their lunches postgame as they head home.
CJ Spiller- B+
EJ Manuel- C
Stevie Johnson- C
TJ Graham- Bench
Scott Chandler- Bench
Dan Carpenter- Bench