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Expert Predictions: Week 4 picks for Patriots vs. Buccaneers

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Experts share their picks for the Patriots Week 4 matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Mike Reiss, ESPN:

Pick: Buccaneers 27, Patriots 20

What to watch for: Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady is 68 yards from surpassing Drew Brees as the NFL's all-time leading passer (currently at 80,291), and he should become No. 1 early in Sunday's game. That he will do so in Gillette Stadium, his old home stadium, adds another layer to what has the makings of a memorable night. The Patriots are expected to honor Brady in some form before the game, likely with a video tribute. -- Mike Reiss

Jenna Laine, ESPN

Pick: Buccaneers 28, Patriots 24

Bold prediction: The Buccaneers will match their season sack total with three of the Patriots' Mac Jones. "I love playing rookie quarterbacks," outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett said. He added, "I wanna win every week, but I have an extra chip on my shoulder this week," referring to Brady's homecoming trip back to Foxborough.

Emmanuel Acho, ESPN: Buccaneers

Matt Bowen, ESPN: Buccaneers

Mike Clay, ESPN: Buccaneers

Jeremy Fowler: Buccaneers

Dominique Foxworth, ESPN: Buccaneers

Dan Graziano, ESPN: Buccaneers

Rob Ninkovich, ESPN: Buccaneers

Laura Rutledge, ESPN: Buccaneers

Kevin Seifert, ESPN: Buccaneers

Seth Wickersham, ESPN: Patriots

Damien Woody, ESPN: Buccaneers

Gregg Rosenthal, NFL.com

Pick: Buccaneers 30, Patriots 22

If you have ever enjoyed rooting against the Patriots, have I got the game for you! A mutiny is brewing among a blessed fan base angry to see Tom Brady on top of his game while New England turns into just another team. (That team: The 2000 Patriots?) The banged-up, boom-or-bust Bucs defense offers Mac Jones a better chance for some big plays, but not enough to keep up with Brady. It's a matchup where the Patriots will sorely miss Stephon Gilmore.

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports:

Pick: Buccaneers 28, Patriots 19

This is the Brady Bowl as Tom Brady faces his former team and former coach. The emotions will be high for Brady. But when it gets down to playing football, Tampa Bay is the much better team. They are playing consecutive road games, but it won't matter. Brady gets the best of his former team and rookie quarterback Mac Jones struggles.

Jason La Canfora, CBS Sports: Buccaneers

Will Brinson, CBS Sports: Buccaneers

Dave Richard, CBS Sports: Buccaneers

Ryan Wilson, CBS Sports: Buccaneers

John Breech, CBS Sports: Buccaneers

Jamey Eisenberg, CBS Sports: Buccaneers

Jared Dubin, CBS Sports: Buccaneers

Mike Florio, Pro Football Talk:

Pick: Patriots 24, Buccaneers 21

If Tom Brady gets too emotional, the Patriots have a chance. Look for the Patriots to do everything they can to activate the waterworks, and possibly to steal the win.

Michael David Smith, Pro Football Talk:

Pick: Buccaneers 30, Patriots 20

Tom Brady will shine in his return to New England.

Paul Perillo, Patriots.com:

Pick: Buccanneers 34, Patriots 16

Tom Brady overcomes a slow start and pulls away, leaving Mac Jones and the Patriots to play catch up.

Mike Dussault, Patriots.com:

Pick: Buccaneers 31, Patriots 17

The Super Bowl champs have firepower across their offense and are coming off a loss, add those elements into Tom Brady's return and it looks like the Bucs will be too much for a young Patriots team still searching for their identity.

Erik Scalavino, Patriots.com:

Pick: Buccaneers 38, Patriots 13

Does New England have a chance in this, the most anticipated regular season game in NFL history? Of course, it does. This is the NFL. Any given Sunday, and all that. But to win, the Patriots need to play a perfect game, while hoping that the reigning Super Bowl Champion Bucs, for the second week in a row, play a lousy one. Two decades of history tells us that this almost never happens when Tom Brady is involved. Bucs big in this one.

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