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Five bold predictions for this week


Editor's note: Adam's bold predictions appear each week on ESPNBoston.com. You can listen to Adam Jones and Drew Brooks on ESPN Boston Radio every weekday live from noon to 2 p.m. and again from 2 to 4. (Listen HERE)

1. Theo is going to Chicago

I don't know how anyone can view it differently. Ownership has now had multiple opportunities -- at Terry Francona's exit press conference and again on WEEI on Friday -- to publicly back Theo Epstein. Each time John Henry and Co. have neglected to do so. The only way to view Henry's comments is that he's bracing Red Sox Nation for the inevitable: that Epstein is leaving for the Chicago Cubs. And who could blame him? He's famously butted heads with Red Sox president and CEO Larry Lucchino. This would be an opportunity to remove himself from Lucchino's shadow while also gaining greater influence within a new organization. Plus, Theo is armed with the knowledge that if he ever wins a World Series in Chicago his next stop will be Cooperstown.

2. Witten won't hurt Patriots

Be prepared to hear a lot of talk this week about how Cowboys tight end Jason Witten will be a matchup nightmare for the Patriots. I'm not buying it. If we've learned anything this season, it's that the Patriots can take away a tight end when they choose to do so. They shut out Antonio Gates in Week 2 and held Dustin Keller to one catch on Sunday. Sure, tight ends have made some plays against New England this season -- Anthony Fasano and Kevin Boss come to mind -- but the Patriots know they can't let Witten beat them. Bill Belichick will see to it that he doesn't.

3. McCourty's struggles will return

After struggling against tall, athletic receivers to begin the season, Devin McCourty rebounded with solid performances in consecutive weeks. But at 6-foot-2, Cowboys' wide receiver Dez Bryant is in that Brandon Marshall-Vincent Jackson-Stevie Johnson mold: a big, explosive target. Bryant excels in the red zone and I expect him to find the end zone against the Patriots.

4. Good times come to an end for Green-Ellis

BenJarvus Green-Ellis reminded all of his critics -- myself included -- how he became 1,000-yard back last season, churning out 136 yards and a pair of touchdowns against the Jets. Green-Ellis' hard-charging style was especially effective against a smaller New York defensive front. However, the Cowboys boast one of the elite nose tackles in the NFL in Jay Ratliff and have yet to allow more than 47 yards to a running back this season. I expect that trend to continue Sunday.

5. Cowboys 31, Patriots 28

I've gone back and forth on this, because I think the Cowboys have a lot of San Diego in them. In other words, they have a knack of shooting themselves in the foot at the worst possible moment. That aside, the Cowboys have had two weeks to prepare for this game -- just like Cleveland last year -- and even have former Patriots assistant Rob Ryan -- who oversaw the Browns' defense last season -- as their defensive coordinator. Plus, the Patriots are coming off an emotional win against a rival and could be looking ahead to their bye week. Add it up all up and it feels like a Cowboys win to me.