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This will be largely unpopular with the Patriots faithful, but I just don’t see how this team will win a playoff game. The Patriots' defense is far too weak to stop anyone, and the offense is very predictable and easily can be stopped by a team with a good defense.
Tom Brady is nearing the end of his career soon, and I’m not buying into him. I never have and I still won’t. If he’s blitzed and pressured a lot, he’s far too inaccurate. I think the knee injury he suffered a few seasons ago scares him. He’d rather take the quick drop than risk taking another hit.
That being said if you blitz him like crazy, you best have the secondary to stop the open receivers.
New England runs a lot of short out routes, or likes to hit guys in the middle of the field. Rarely will Brady go deep. He will hit open guys short and they make the plays to gain the yards.
If you blitz Brady like crazy and play tight coverage, those open receivers all the sudden aren’t so open.
The New York Giants and Pittsburgh Steelers proved this true this year and in the past, and I fully expect this to happen again.
New England is most likely going to get the No. 2 seed in the AFC playoffs, which gets them a first-round bye and a home Divisional playoff game. Looking at the matchups so far they most likely will get to play the Houston Texans in the second round.
The Texans match up great with the Patriots and I think they can beat them in Foxboro. Houston was built to stop another great passer and that’s Peyton Manning and the Colts. They’ve fared well the last few years due to being built this way.
The new 3-4 scheme that the Texans took on with new defensive coordinator Wade Phillips has improved this defense tremendously. They will bring tons of pressure, and have the personnel to stop New England’s receivers. It could be a long day for New England’s offense in this potential game.
On the other side of the ball the Patriots rank dead last in defense. They’ve given up over 400 yards to opposing teams almost every game including the last two against the miserable Washington Redskins and Indianapolis Colts.
They can’t stop the run, and are even worse against the pass. The Texans even with a third string quarterback will exploit this. Their run game is far too good for New England to stop, and this will set up big pass plays.
The Patriots have wide receivers playing in the secondary for crying out loud.
This will be true for any team New England plays in the playoffs even if it’s not the Texans.
As of today, technically, the Patriots would be the three seed and Houston would be the top seed, but with New England’s favorable schedule and the strength of Baltimore and Pittsburgh, I think Baltimore will get the one and New England the two seeds.
If New England ends up in the three seed and they play the Jets for the third time this year, I think the Jets will end up winning.
It’s tough to beat a team three times in a season. The Jets knocked out New England last year, and I expect them to use the same scheme.
New York I think will do a better job of stopping the pass and they seem to be getting the offense rolling again. This will be a tough matchup for New England.