Soo, ready for the season yet, or do you want another preseason game?

Nope? All set? Good.

Speaking of which, before we get into our predictions of the first four contests of the season, a quick review of our Preseason Predictions column posted at the beginning of August.

Preseason Predictions (Proper): Pretty short list. Two preseason wins or less (at 1-3, the Pats fell in line). Also, we guessed that, while Stevan Ridley would produce the most, Brandon Bolden could secure a roster spot with solid play. Donald Thomas would start at guard, while Ryan Mallett “(would) get plenty of opportunities to play.”

Preseason Predictions (Poor): We had Bolden scoring the most TDs (zero won’t do it), Aaron Hernandez getting the most receptions, and Jabar Gaffney with the most reception yardage (even without his injury, that probably wasn’t going to happen).

Ah, well. Why let a few mistakes get in the way? Let’s be pundits!

At TENNESSEE (Sun, 9/9, 1 p.m.) NE 23, TEN 20.

Titans quarterback Jack Locker comes into this game with three advantages: home crowd, strong scrambling skills, and opponent ignorance. On that last point, New England has so little film on Locker they may as well be scouting Nessie. With a strong running game, we can see Locker doing just enough – even without Kenny “Officer, I Haven’t Had Anydrink To Thing Tonight” Britt at receiver – to give the Pats’ defense a challenge.

Meanwhile, the visiting offense takes a while to round into form, as the starting line this off-season have seen each other about as often as Giselle and the inside of a Wal-Mart. We predict a win, but a close one.

Vs. ARIZONA (Sun, 9/16, 1 p.m.) – NE 31, ARI 13.

Your starting quarterback for Arizona: John “Who, me?” Skelton, who beat out Kevin “Ka-ching!” Kolb and Ryan Lindley. Seriously, this three-headed QB is kind of like Cerberus, if Cerberus were a mini Chihuahua.

Offensively, the home opener should see the Patriots pull an Earth, Wind, and Fire and really get into a groove.

At BALTIMORE (Sun, 9/23, 8:20 p.m.) – BAL 27, NE 23

If you’re from Baltimore – sorry: If youse’re from Balmer, you want this game. The Ravens came within one dropped pass of victory and one missed field goal of overtime in last year’s AFC Champsionship at Foxboro. Linebacker Ray Lewis would actually rip off someone’s head and shout at it to ensure a win – and that would be his own teammate. With New England starting more slowly than Don Criqui matching a uniform number with a player while Baltimore gets inspired by the past more than Ron Borges’ barber, it should become a tough slog down in Charm City for the Pats.

But man, wouldn’t it be great if the Pats won on a questionable call by a replacement official? Even watching from his couch, Terrell Suggs would get so upset he’d pass out after forgetting to breathe out of his mouth.

At BUFFALO (Sun, 9/30, 1 p.m.) – BUF 21, NE 20

After a 2-0 start, the Patriots move back to .500 with a lame effort against Buffalo. Too many weapons on defense and a good-enough game from Ryan “Oh, I Went To School Near Boston – In Cambridge, As A Matter Of Fact” Fitzpatrick keep the visiting offense on their toes and the defense on their heels. Mario “I’m Not Injured Yet” Williams will make a difference, throwing Tom Brady off-rhythm and allowing the Bills to drop about 40 players into coverage.

The home fans feel very happy, until they leave the stadium and realize they live in Buffalo.

Predicted record after four games: 2-2

Predicted season record: 11-5

You can email Chris Warner a polite and cheery note at



25 thoughts on “New England 2-2? First Quarter 2012 Predictions

  1. Is it me or does this seem a ittle too much like, nobidy ever comments on my posts so I’ll give the Pats a 2-2 start and watch the fireworks.


    1. Dear Imaginative Nickname: No. Not sure about Buffalo and went with a pessimistic view there, but feel strongly about the game at Baltimore. Just haven’t seen enough offense in the preseason to justify a strong start from this group. They should win the AFC East and they should win in the playoffs, but I just can’t see a 13-3 record and SB appearance from NE two years in a row.


      1. Can’t see a potential League best record of 14-2 and 13-3, why? Just because? I’m not big on predicting Wins/Losses because someone is always going to overreact (see above) but 11-5 for a team that most think improved that has the 32nd Strength of Schedule in the NFL. Just not sure logic was applied, but again I could care less about predictions (but clearly enough to post a comment).


        1. WA, thanks for being specific in your concerns and starting an actual discussion. Here are some of my concerns for the beginning of the season: their new deep threat caught exactly 1 pass for 12 yards. Their presumptive number 3 WR has never worn a Pats jersey before. Their LT showed signs of growing pains; their RT has a bad back; their RG is a no-show, making their starting center an undersized plugger who may get murdered by Haloti Ngata. Both TEs are coming off injuries (looking good in preseason, but still a concern for me). They have very little experience in the O backfield. On D, they feature two rookies, a career backup safety, plus an oft-injured safety and second-year corner being asked to turn around the most frustrating Patriots defense since the early 1990s.
          Plus: what’s wrong with 2-2? The 2001 and 2003 teams started 2-2. The Pats should be very good this year, but I believe the competition will be better than advertised and the changes NE’s making on both sides of the ball will take some time to execute. If I’m wrong, I’ll hold myself accountable. Thanks for writing in. See you next month.


          1. I have no problem with 2-2, its the 11-5. I dont think that many losses. Besides Balt, and Buffalo, where else do they lose?


          2. Games 13 vs. Houston and 14 vs. SF. Tough Ds, solid OLs on both squads. After beating J’ville Game 15, Pats have wild card wrapped up and rest starters vs. Miami. (Balt and Hou take first-round byes.)


  2. Chris,

    Sorry I just don’t see a loss at Buffalo. I know they dropped that game last year but I don’t see lightning striking twice. I see BB breaking out last years game, reminding his team that they sucked, and then suggesting to them that they quit sucking especially against Ivy League QB’s. Do I think the Bills are better than Miami or the Jets…sure…but they are not ready for prime time. Unless the Pats defense is as pitiful as it was last year I just don’t see how the Bills score enough points to win that game.

    As for Baltimore..what are you smoking? There are very few games that the Pats want to win more than at Baltimore. I think the Pats are the one team built to neutralize Baltimore’s perceived advantage at LB. The Pats TE’s will run them into the ground. I just don’t see it.


    1. LTD, I can see your disagreement, just see Buffalo as a bunch of quick-starters who seem to play well before the inevitable mid-season crash. I see CJ Spiller having a productive game for them.
      As for Baltimore, 8-0 at home last season. After losing to their hated rivals in the AFC Championship by 3, I really think the Ravens have the upper hand when it comes to reasons why they want to win more. (They’re obsessive, ridiculous scapegoat-finders, but it works for them.)


  3. what’s the deal with all the, ‘Name “lame-attempt-at-humor” Last Name’ constructions. Is this some moronic attempt to imitate an already extremely old and lame Chris Berman schtick or does Chris “I’m Desperate for Attention” Warner honestly think that is both funny and original.


  4. And I thought I was a world-class Troll. Bruce, this guy is hack beyond believe. Like a dumber less funny Jerry Thorton. ( Is that possible?)


  5. So,

    @GregABedard Yeah, Bobby Valentine told Glen Ordway, after asking if BV has checked out, he would punch him if he was there.

    Oh boy.


  6. Hey Chris, once you mentioned “dropped pass” in the AFCCG I lost interest in anything else you had to say. Get your facts straight first, google “Sterling Moore,” and then maybe we’ll talk.


    1. Sorry, SJH, bad semantics. I meant “failed to secure a pass in his hands and bring toward his body, instead allowing a late-coming rookie from SMU to knock it out of his tenuous grasp.”


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