It’s not too often that a team has the luxury of training in near silence for over two months before their first playoff game. The Patriots, however, are playing with house money this postseason and have an opportunity to make some noise. Here are 3 reasons why they’re legitimate Super Bowl contenders.
The Patriots are one of the most successful franchises in all of sports, with ten Super Bowl wins. The roster has undergone a transformation that makes them contenders again this season. Here are three reasons why they’re legitimate favorites to win their fifth ring tomorrow night.The New England Patriots were the last team to win a Super Bowl in 2016 and they remain one of the most successful franchises in NFL history. The Pats have had some unusual success, including only two losing seasons since 2001. So what are three reasons why this year might be different?The “patriots seasons” are the last three seasons that the New England Patriots have won 16 games. They will be competing in their seventh Super Bowl this year, and they are legitimate contenders for winning it all.
The New England Patriots were said to be in the midst of a rebuilding process. Last season, the Patriots finished 7-9 after Tom Brady departed for Tampa Bay. That was the team’s poorest record since Tom Brady joined the Patriots.
With the 15th overall choice, the Patriots selected Alabama quarterback Mac Jones. Bill Belichick was expected to take some time to bring this squad back into the AFC playoff picture. Buffalo was projected to be the AFC East’s to lose.
However, following another great performance by the Patriots in a 45-7 thrashing of the Cleveland Browns on Sunday, many are looking over their shoulders and asking whether the Patriots are already competitors.
Over their previous four games, the Patriots have outscored their opponents 150-50. pic.twitter.com/sccnhN7zHM
November 16, 2021 — NFL on CBS (@NFLonCBS)
They are, in case you didn’t know. The following are three causes for this.
They’re big and strong up front, and they can outmuscle most teams. Trent Brown, a Pro Bowl offensive lineman, was acquired by the Patriots over the offseason to help fortify the offensive line. To aid on defense, they added linebacker Matthew Judon. So far this season, both have made a significant influence.
In four consecutive games, the Patriots have run for more than 140 yards. RB Damien Harris and rookie running back Rhamondre Stevenson have both performed well on the ground. Brandon Bolden, a standout special teams player, has also contributed by collecting passes out of the backfield.
Judon has 9.5 sacks on defense, which ties him for fourth in the NFL. He and veteran linebacker Donta Hightower form one of the league’s best linebacker tandems. The secondary is substantially enhanced as well. J.C. Jackson has been playing at a Pro Bowl level, and Devin McCourty is the defensive backbone.
Remember, the Patriots had one of the greatest defenses in the league two seasons ago. Last season, they saw a handful of starters opt out due to COVID. This season, those players are back.
So, I’ve demonstrated that they have the potential and players to make a postseason splash. However, the AFC’s instability is another aspect that makes it conceivable so quickly.
New England is now 6-4 in the AFC East, a half-game behind the Buffalo Bills. These teams have yet to meet this season, with matchups scheduled for Weeks 14 and 16. The division is clearly still up for grabs. Buffalo has looked like the greatest team in the NFL at times. Their offense and Josh Allen have struggled at times.
@JoshAllen41_ | @Jaguars pic.twitter.com/VIkBK8M2Lq @JoshAllen41_ | @Jaguars pic.twitter.com/VIkBK8M2Lq @Jaguars pic.twitter.com/VIkBK8M2Lq @Jaguars pic.twitter.com/VIk
November 8, 2021 — NFL Films (@NFLFilms)
Even if Buffalo wins the division, they have shown that they are susceptible against tough opponents. All season, Baltimore has been a mix of jekyll and hyde. Kansas City’s defense is still a work in progress. The Patriots have already beaten up on Justin Herbert and the Chargers. Tennessee is the only state left.
There isn’t much to criticize about the Titans. I simply want to see them accomplish something meaningful in the postseason. That sentiment, I think, is shared by many others.
That leaves Bill Belichick as the last and most essential reason why the New England Patriots are legitimate AFC Super Bowl LVI hopefuls.
The ability of Bill Belichick to change a squad and make changes is apparent. He is, without a doubt, the best coach in NFL history. He also has the natural ability to pass on his football expertise and values to his quarterback. When asked whether he is permitted to modify plays at the line of scrimmage, rookie quarterback Mac Jones responded with this.
When asked whether he has the flexibility to adjust plays at the line of scrimmage, Mac Jones said yes.
“That’s top-secret knowledge,” says the narrator. That’s something you’ll have to question Josh or Coach Belichick about. pic.twitter.com/HWRON5P8Dh
November 16, 2021 — Zack Cox (@ZackCoxNESN)
Mac Jones is doing much better than anybody could have predicted at this stage of his career. Jones is completing about 70% of his passes and has improved his decision-making as the season proceeded. Jones has thrown seven touchdown passes and one interception during his current four-game winning run.
Jones’ biggest critique coming out of college was that he didn’t have the strongest arm. People also didn’t know whether he was merely a product of being surrounded by some of college football’s top players. He was, after all, at Alabama. They consistently have some of the game’s greatest running backs, wide receivers, and defensive players.
However, this does not negate the fact that he had a role in their success. When the Patriots picked him, his good traits were that he has a rapid release, is extremely clever, and is highly accurate with the football. That mold is a good match. Those are the same qualities that Tom Brady has.
I’m not so insane as to believe Mac Jones will be the next Tom Brady. There will never be another Tom Brady. Mac Jones, on the other hand, is a perfect match for what they want to accomplish offensively.
The following one was discovered by Belichick. pic.twitter.com/3hM8BTAr1O
November 14, 2021 — B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron)
People need to start paying attention and take the Patriots seriously for all of these reasons. This is particularly true of the Buffalo Bills, which Belichick has controlled throughout his time in New England.
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