Could This One Factor Put the Patriots in the Playoffs Again?

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Pittsburgh Steelers v New England Patriots

Can the New England Patriots win back-to-back Super Bowls? That’s what a lot of media pundits think will happen, even with Tom Brady playing at 42 years old. How easy will it be for New England this year? What one factor could determine their seeding in the AFC playoffs? Keep reading to find out what can give the Pats an easy road to the Super Bowl.

Do the Patriots have the easiest NFL schedule?

A CBS Sports study showed that New England has the best chance to make the playoffs. The formula was based on Las Vegas odds during the first three games of the season, their Super Bowl odds, and difficulty of schedule. The Patriots’ first three games include a Week 1 visit from the Steelers, a visit from the Jets, and a road trip to Buffalo. The Jets and Bills went back-and-forth in Week 1, with Buffalo squeaking out a victory. 

Convincing Week 1 win

The Patriots took the Steelers to school yet again in a 33-3 Week 1 domination of Pittsburgh. The Steelers’ offense looked like it sorely missed its key departures from last season, Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell. New England’s defense continues to give Ben Roethlisberger fits. And Bill Belichick improved his record against Mike Tomlin to 11-3.  

The Patriots’ weak division

Outside of the year when Tom Brady tore his ACL, the AFC East has been the Patriots to lose each season. This year is no different, as it looks even weaker than usual. The Ravens beat the Dolphins 59-10. So far, Miami looks like the worst roster in the NFL. 

The Jets had a 17-point lead against the Bills and somehow squandered it, with head coach Adam Gase particularly upset at his receiving corps after the game. Yes, the Bills picked up the win but is anyone sold on Josh Allen? He struggled even in the comeback victory, throwing just one touchdown and two interceptions. Unless Allen or the Jets’ second-year quarterback Sam Darnold can step up, it will be a runaway for the Pats in the division.

New England signs Antonio Brown

When the Oakland Raiders released Antonio Brown, the internet was swamped with memes and gifs about Belichick scooping him up. Then, the Patriots actually orchestrated a way to land the dynamic receiver, signing Brown to a one-year contract.

The only issue with Brown is how he’ll fit in. But we’ve seen Belichick take in players with poor locker room history who have been productive. We think Brown could be almost as dominant as Randy Moss was in his first season with the Patriots when Brady threw 23 touchdown passes to the receiver. If a healthy Brown can catch 15 touchdowns this season, he’ll re-cement his status as the best receiver in the game.

How good will the Patriots be?

With the addition of Brown, the Patriots should be the team to beat in the AFC. It wouldn’t surprise us to see this team go anywhere from 13-3 to 15-1, as their schedule lines up nicely for tough games against the Ravens, Chiefs, and Eagles. This could be the No. 1 seed in the AFC playoff race and we are excited to see Brown inserted into the lineup for Week 2.

Do you think the Patriots will make the playoffs?

How do you feel about New England’s chances at making the playoffs? We think they will run away with the division and easily get at least 12 wins. For more news from around the league, check out the NFL section.