The NFL season is at the quarter mark, with most teams getting ready to play their fourth game of the season this week. There have already been plenty of surprises, but the most notable so far is the Miami Dolphins starting 3-0 and sitting atop the AFC East.
The New England Patriots, the normal big kids on the block in that division, enter the weekend 1-2. Bill Belichick’s squad has struggled on offense in the last two weeks as they continue to search for playmakers to help Tom Brady in the passing game.
As the two teams prepare to meet in Gillette Stadium this Sunday, we decided to get an expert’s insight into the matchup. CBS 4 Miami sports anchor Jim Berry gave us his thoughts on not only the Patriots-Dolphins game, but several other big matchups set for this weekend.
Miami Dolphins @ New England Patriots, 1:00 p.m. ET
“This has been a house of horrors over the years for the Dolphins, but I have a feeling this year is going to be different. I know you’re probably thinking I’m being a homer, but here’s the deal. The Dolphins are off to a 3-0 start, their best start in five years. They look like a different team. They have speed on offense, which is something they have never had, and they used it to come back to beat the Oakland Raiders last week.
The New England Patriots on the other hand, yes they still have Tom Brady. They still have Bill Belichick. But you know what? They don’t quite look the same. They looked pretty woeful in losing to the Detroit Lions, so I’m picking the Dolphins 23-21.
Philadelphia Eagles @ Tennessee Titans, 1:00 p.m. ET
Both of these teams are 2-1, but the Eagles were really buoyed by the return of Carson Wentz last week. He had a little rust, a couple of turnovers, but he still has that “it” factor. And this week he figures to have Jay Ajayi in the backfield to help take some of the pressure off of him. I’m liking the Eagles 24-13.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Chicago Bears, 1:00 p.m. ET
Intrigue here because the Buccaneers could bring back quarterback Jameis Winston. He has served his three-game suspension. But the question is, will they bench Ryan Fitzpatrick? They call him “Fitzmagic,” because that’s what he has been, throwing for 400 yards in three straight games. Even though they lost to the Steelers last week, a lot of guys want to keep rolling with the 35-year-old. I think the Bears and that ferocious defense, led by new acquisition Khalil Mack, simply will be too much. Bears at home are going to win this game 20-17.
New Orleans Saints @ New York Giants, 4:25 p.m. ET
I’m not sure this game is going to be a thriller. The Saints, at 2-1, taking on the 1-2 Giants who did finally get a win last week over Houston. Here’s my deal with this one, the Saints, when you look at their team, they’re kind of uneven, because their pass defense has been woeful, but their run defense has been terrific. That, unfortunately for the Giants is not what they do well, because they don’t really have an explosive offense. Saquon Barkley, their young running back is going to be a star, but I don’t think he’s going to get it done in this one, so I like the Saints and Drew Brees in this one 24-13.