A view from the Pats' August 29 preseason game against the Giants. (Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Football is back, and so is the Red Zone Report with WBZ NewsRadio's Adam Kaufman and Boston Globe NFL reporter Ben Volin!
Volin said he's concerned about the Patriots' offense this season—just three receivers on this roster have caught passes from QB Tom Brady in meaningful games, and Rob Gronkowski's not in the lineup for the first time since 2009.
"This is a team that, I think the offense, once again, is going to be a little bit of a work in progress to start the season, and we're just kind of used to it at this point, and I think the Patriots aren't okay with it," Volin said. "Every year they kind of re-tool and there's a lot of new faces, and this year, there's a lot of big changes."
Meanwhile, what can fans expect from a 42-year-old Tom Brady?
"I'm not expecting anything much different from last year," Volin said. "His training has his body in good condition entering the season. Interestingly, he's put on about 10 pounds of bulk this offseason, which seems to go against the TB12 method, but I think he wants to withstand the hits a little bit better and prepare his body for December and January a little bit better ... No quarterback his age has ever started all 16 games, so that would be another record Tom Brady sets this year. I see no reason not for him to have another good season."
The Patriots are favored Sunday night by nearly a touchdown, but what's Volin's prediction for the Week 1 matchup with a new-look Steelers?
"The Steelers have never beaten Tom Brady in Foxborough, and I think that's going to continue," he said. "I've got the Patriots winning, kind of going away, I'm going with 31-21."
Kaufman and Volin also talked about takeaways from the Pats' 3-1 preseason, if Demaryius Thomas has anything left in the tank after his Achilles tear, whether or not Josh Gordon will play a full season, if Volin is worried about N'Keal Harry's injuries, and the possibility of seeing Gronk in a Patriots uniform again.