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Game Predictions: Expert picks for Patriots at Jaguars

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Experts share their picks for the Patriots Week 2 matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Mike Reiss, ESPN:

Pick: Patriots 23, Jaguars 17

Leonard Fournette's tweaked hamstring is a huge development in favor of the Patriots. Couple that with encouraging signs from the Pats' pass protection against a tough Texans defense in the opener -- which they'll need against an equally impressive Jaguars defense in an electric environment -- and it's enough for me to take the plunge.

Mike Golic, ESPN: Patriots

Seth Wickersham, ESPN: Patriots

Mina Kimes, ESPN: Patriots

Trey Wingo, ESPN: Jaguars

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports:

Pick: Jaguars 21, Patriots 17

This is the best game of the week, a rematch of the AFC Championship Game. The Patriots won that game, but they won't win this one. The Jaguars are even better this year on defense, which will slow Tom Brady and gang, while the Jaguars will make enough plays on offense to win it.

Jason La Canfora, CBS Sports: Patriots

Will Brinson, CBS Sports: Jaguars

Dave Richard, CBS Sports: Patriots

Ryan Wilson, CBS Sports: Jaguars

Elliot Harrison, NFL.com:

Pick: Jaguars 17, Patriots 14

This sucker made my "Top 18 games of the 2018 season" back in April. It's an enticing matchup that should come down to the wire -- unless the Jaguars' defense absolutely controls the engagement. Put another way: If the Patriots are to win, it will be in a close contest where Tom Brady engineers a couple of clutch fourth-quarter drives. However, if Jacksonville plays its best football in front of the raucous DUUUUUVAL residents -- and if Leonard Fournette is healthy -- this game could get ugly for Bill Belichick's group. None of the Pats' wide receivers are superior one-on-one players when compared to the Jags' DBs. Put Jalen Ramsey on Rob Gronkowski to counter that strategic advantage. So, what's the issue with this prediction, and the score? The uncertainty of Fournette's hamstring.

Mike Giardi, NFL Network: Patriots 27, Jaguars 23

Mike Florio, Pro Football Talk:

Pick: Patriots 24, Jaguars 20

Go ahead and put your best corner on Gronk, Jags, and watch what happens when that corner isn’t available to cover any of the team’s receivers. Also, Blake Bortles.

Michael David Smith, Pro Football Talk:

Pick: Patriots 30, Jaguars 27

The AFC Championship Game rematch should be a good one, and I think Tom Brady will have some fourth-quarter heroics.

Paul Perillo, Patriots.com:

Pick: Jaguars 23, Patriots 19

Jags defense forces field goals while making life difficult on Tom Brady and a Patriots offense missing some weapons.

Andy Hart, Patriots.com:

Pick: Patriots 24, Jaguars 17

Another big challenge for the offensive line, but the Leonard Fournette injury takes away Jacksonville’s best chance to move the ball. Pencil in the weekly Rob Gronkowski touchdown, regardless of who tries to cover him.

Erik Scalavino, Patriots.com:

Pick: Patriots 28, Jaguars 17

It's another tight, one-possession game until late in the 4th when New England gets one last comfortable touchdown to seal an important road win.

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