New England Patriots v. Raiders: Week 11 game preview and predictions

FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 29: Tom Brady /

The New England Patriots are ready to take on the Oakland Raiders in Mexico City after a week of practices at the U.S. Air Force Academy.

The New England Patriots will take their talents south of the border on Sunday to take on the Oakland Raiders in Mexico City. It’s their first international game since 2012 when they played in London.

Oakland, is playing in Mexico City for the second straight season though. The Patriots have played there as well, but it was a preseason game against the Cowboys in 1998.

Tom Brady will be looking to join a small club of quarterbacks to have won a game in three different countries, since he’s easily won both games he’s played in London. Along with Brady, the Patriots offense will be looking to solve their red zone problems. New England has been winning lately, but they’re kicking a lot of field goals when they should be scoring touchdowns.

The offense will be without Chris Hogan this week, so the other receivers will have to step up. Brandin Cooks, Danny Amendola, and Phillip Dorsett all have the potential to break out for a huge game against one of the worst passing defenses in the league. Oakland ranks 24th in the league with 244.6 passing yards allowed per game. Tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Martellus Bennet should also be extremely involved.

Oakland’s rushing defense is not much better. They are allowing 116.6 yards per game on the ground to their opponents so far, and Dion Lewis, Rex Burkhead, and James White will look to take advantage.

Tom Brady: 29 of 38 for 315 yards and 2 touchdowns

Tom Brady is going to continue to play like he has all season long for the New England Patriots. He averages around 38 passing attempts per game, and 2 touchdowns. That’s just what he’ll get in this one against the Raiders.

Brady should have no problem with Oakland’s defense, and the ball will be pretty evenly spread amongst his receivers, tight ends, and running backs.

Martellus Bennett: 4 catches for 70 yards and 1 touchdown

Martellus Bennett now has a full week of Patriots practice under his belt following his return to New England. Last week, he played right away and made a few catches, but he should be even more involved in this game. Look for Bennett to catch the ball about 4 times, with one of those going for a score.

More from New England Patriots

Rex Burkhead: 5 carries for 25 yards, 5 receptions for 50 yards and 1 touchdown

A healthy Rex Burkhead is finally finding his stride. He won’t carry the ball a ton, but he will make his rushing attempts count. Burkhead’s presence will be felt in the passing game as well, and he’s going to find the end zone.

Ricky Jean Francois: 2 tackles, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble

Last week, in his first game with the New England Patriots, Ricky Jean Francois recorded one huge run stuffing tackle. I think he doubles that tackle number in week 11 and finds a way to force a fumble on a sack of Raiders QB Derek Carr.

Malcolm Butler: 4 tackles, 2 pass deflections, 1 interception

I predicted a big game for Malcolm Butler last week, and I was wrong. This is the week he breaks out though. 4 tackles, 2 pass deflections, and an interception will make the corner the player of the game in this week 11 matchup.

Next: Catching up on Patriots-Raiders history

Game Prediction: Patriots 34, Raiders 21

This game probably won’t be that close. The Oakland Raiders are not as good as anyone expected them to be, and the New England Patriots offense seems to be firing on all cylinders lately. If they can figure out how to score when they’re within the 20-yard line, this is going to be an easy win. The Patriots defense should be able to slow down Marshawn Lynch, and force the Raiders to play the game in the air. New England’s cornerbacks could then have a huge day.