Sunday, October 14, 2012

Week 6 AFC East game picks: Patriots at Seahawks

Lead writer Nick St. Denis and AFC East Daily contributors Dan Begnoche, Sean Donovan and Sam Hollingsworth pick the New England Patriots' road bout with the Seattle Seahawks.

Nick's take:
New England's No. 1-ranked offense won't get off to a quick start against the Seahawks' top-tier defense. However, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and quarterback Tom Brady adjust accordingly and roll in the second half. Plus, I think the Patriots' opportunistic defense makes up for any shortcomings the offense faces early on.
Prediction: Patriots 27, Seahawks 16

Sean's take:
The Patriots travel to the Great Northwest to face the Seahawks in front of a boisterous crowd that has a legitimate reason to be excited about its team. Seattle's defense excels in all areas, but particularly in the pass rush led by defensive ends Chris Clemons and Bruce Irvin. In the upset, the Seahawks use a tried and true method of beating New England; rattling Brady.
Prediction: Seahawks 19, Patriots 16

Dan's take:
If there was ever going to be a team to stop Brady, it may be the Seahawks, who have already shut down three top-tier quarterbacks this year. Ranked in the top five in both major defensive categories, Seattle will face the ultimate test this week against the league's No. 1 offense. Keep an eye on third downs in this game, a category where the Seahawks' defense isn't very impressive and the Patriots offense flourishes. Seattle's defense is good, but not Tom Brady good.
Prediction: Patriots 24, Seahawks 13

Sam's take:
A popular stance this week has been that the Pats won't be able to travel to Seattle and win against the stout Seahawks defense and its infamous 12th man. But this is a statement game for the Pats, and they'll perform at that level. Watch for Rob Gronkowski, who's had a relatively quiet year thus far, to have a big impact when Pete Carroll faces the team he coached just before Belichick.
Prediction: Patriots 28, Seahawks 13