The presence of Bill Belichick and the mystique of the New England Patriots has a strong influence.
Perhaps it’s easy to give too much credit to a Patriots roster coached by Belichick because we’re all so used to the team being good. Perhaps that’s what happened to CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora.
He recently admitted he botched his preseason prediction that the Patriots would be a dangerous playoff team.
NFL Expert Says He Has a Hard Time Seeing the Patriots in the Playoffs
The Patriots are 2-3 ahead of a huge test at home against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday. If they fall to 2-4 with 2 games still upcoming against the Buffalo Bills, and equally difficult matchups with the Los Angeles Chargers and Cleveland Browns, the Patriots will need to go on an impressive run to make the playoffs.
La Canfora doesn’t sound optimistic about the Patriots’ chances of success.
This Tom Brady v. Bill Belichick post-divorce thing is one-way traffic. Brady and the Bucs are slaying everything and the rebuilding Patriots were lucky to beat the tanking Texans last week. Could New England get a little better as the season goes on? Sure. Mac Jones is stable enough as a rookie QB. But there isn’t much special about this team, nothing comes easy, the offensive line has become a serious concern and they just don’t look particularly close to winning anything meaningful to me. I thought they would be a scary team to face in the wild-card round. But I have a hard time seeing them in the postseason, now, and this feels a lot like last year’s 7-9 season to me. Matt Judon can only do so much, the secondary is a mess (could’ve used Stephon Gilmore last week! Too soon?) and Belichick the GM is doing Belichick the coach no favors. Look, if Jones continues on this arc, then the season is a success in terms of the long-term rebuild, but I thought the program overall would be further along for 2021.
Some suggest the Patriots would be in a better position if the team had kept Cam Newton, but here we are and things aren’t exactly peachy.
What’s Next For the Patriots?
If nothing else, the Patriots have to take care of home field. The team is already 0-3 at Gillette Stadium. Finishing the 2021 season with a winning record at home is imperative, and the road toward .500 begins Sunday against the Cowboys.
New England Patriots (2-3) 2021 Regular Season Schedule
- Week 1 – Miami Dolphins 17, New England Patriots 16
- Week 2 – New England Patriots 25, New York Jets 6
- Week 3 – New Orleans Saints 28, New England Patriots 13
- Week 4 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers 19, New England Patriots 17
- Week 5 – New England Patriots 25, Houston Texans 22
- Week 6 – Dallas Cowboys at 4:25 pm ET – CBS – October 17
- Week 7 – New York Jets at 1pm ET – CBS – October 24
- Week 8 – at Los Angeles Chargers at 4:05 pm ET – CBS – October 31
- Week 9 – at Carolina Panthers at 1 pm ET – CBS – November 7
- Week 10 – Cleveland Browns at 1 pm ET – CBS – November 14
- Week 11 – at Atlanta Falcons at 8:20 pm ET – FOX/NFL Network/Amazon – November 18
- Week 12 – Tennessee Titans at 1 pm ET – CBS – November 28
- Week 13 – at Buffalo Bills at 8:15 pm ET – ESPN – December 6
- Week 14 – Bye Week
- Week 15 – at Indianapolis Colts Time TBA – December 18
- Week 16 – Jacksonville Jaguars at 1 pm ET – CBS – January 2
- Week 17 – at Miami Dolphins at 1 pm ET – CBS – January 9