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Bucs vs Patriots Week 4 Predictions, Picks, and Preview: Can Tom Brady Beat Belichick in His Return to Foxboro? : NFL : Sports World News



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Bucs vs Patriots Week 4 Predictions, Picks, and Preview: Can Tom Brady Beat Belichick in His Return to Foxboro?

ATLANTA, GA – Tom Brady of the New England Patriots talks to head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots after the Patriots defeat the Rams 13-3 during Super Bowl LIII at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on February 3, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo : Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

The biggest regular season game in NFL history is finally upon us, with Tom Brady set to make his much-anticipated return to Foxboro this coming Sunday night. Can the seven-time Super Bowl champion grab the win over former coach Bill Belichick in this Week 4 clash? Read our preview of the Bucs vs. Patriots showdown to see who has the advantage.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers enter Week 4 as -5.5 favorites

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are no longer unbeaten. The Los Angeles Rams handed the reigning Super Bowl champions their first loss of the season, pulling off a 34-24 win at SoFi Stadium. The Bucs had no answer for Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford, who threw for 343 yards and four touchdowns. The Bucs dropped down to 2-1, one game behind leaders Carolina in the NFC South standings with the loss.

They will look to get their season back on track when they take on the New England Patriots this coming Sunday. All eyes will certainly be on Tom Brady, who will be playing at Foxboro for the first time since leaving the Patriots last year.

He tried his hardest to keep the Bucs’ 10-game winning streak intact, completing 41 of 55 passes for 432 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions in the loss to the Rams. He also had three carries for 14 rushing yards and a score. Brady reached an incredible milestone in the Week 3 defeat, surpassing 80,000 career passing yards.

He only needs to record 68 passing yards against New England to break Drew Brees’ NFL record (80,358). However, it is critical for the Bucs that they complement Brady’s passing with an effective run game. Tampa Bay’s ground attack was simply non-existent in the loss to the Rams, racking up just 35 yards rushing.

That made the Bucs’ offense one-dimensional, allowing the Rams’ defense to take some hits on Brady, with the GOAT getting sacked three times.

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New England Patriots installed as +5.5 underdogs

On Sunday, the New England Patriots were sent crashing back to earth with a deflating 28-13 loss to the New Orleans Saints. The Patriots failed to overcome their poor start, scoring just three points in the first half.

Mac Jones struggled throwing the ball downfield during the opening half, going 1-of-8 for 17 yards and an interception on passes that went at least 15 yards. Four out of Jones’ seven deep incompletions in the first and second quarters were due to overthrows.

It didn’t get much better for Jones in the second half as the Patriots quarterback found himself under pressure for most of the afternoon. Jones threw a total of three interceptions, two of which resulted in touchdowns for the Saints.

Saints safety P.J. Williams returned Jones’ first pick for 46 yards. That interception helped set up Winston’s 7-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter. Jenkins later snared a pass lobbed by Pats tight end Jonnu Smith, returning it for 34 yards to put New Orleans in front 21-3.

Jones will need to improve on his deep passes, given that the Bucs’ secondary is Tampa Bay’s Achilles heel. The Bucs, who lost cornerback Jamel Dean to a knee injury on Sunday, have allowed 1,027 yards through the air in their first three games.

Writer’s Prediction

Brady wins in his return to New England, with Tampa Bay covering the spread as well.

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