Will Patriots Repeat Super Bowl Success?
It’s a long way until Super Bowl LIV, but the 54th NFL championship game is the biggest event in the NFL calendar. As the new NFL season begins and rosters change, it’s all in preparation for the big game which isn’t until February next year. But will NFL giants, New England Patriots, repeat their success? With an excellent track record and superstar quarterback, Tom Brady, it certainly looks possible.
Breaking Records the Patriot Way
The New England Patriots are probably one of the most famous NFL teams in the world. Even people outside of the US would have heard of them, especially when they hear the name, Tom Brady. Since 2000, the New England Patriots have claimed 16 AFC titles and set many records, including most wins in ten years, an undefeated season and the longest winning streak. Add to that back-to-back appearances at the Super Bowl; it’s easy to see why the Patriots are one of the most successful teams in the history of the NFL. After a successful season, expectations are high for them to make and break new records this season and come away with more for the trophy cabinet.
Raw Experience Paving Way to Success
At the end of last year, the New England Patriots weren’t the best NFL team on paper. Tom Brady only had a passer rating two points above the league average, and statistically it was one of the worst seasons of his career. Defense-wise, the Patriots had surrendered more than 30 points on five occasions. Despite this, they still made it to the Super Bowl. And they succeeded to victory.
Why? It’s not just because of Tom Brady, though he does help, but because of the legacy behind the team. In the season just gone, they became the second-ever team to win at least ten straight division titles, and again Brady set another record of achieving the most career passing touchdowns. So, it doesn’t matter what it looks like on paper, when other teams are facing the Patriots on the pitch, it’s easy to let nerves sink in. That’s happened on many occasions, which saw the Patriots swoop to victory. Let’s not forget the mixture of experience from senior players and the determination of a coach who’s almost been there 20 years – it’s going to take something big to beat the Patriots. It didn’t work for the Rams. Will it work for the other teams this season?
What to Expect This Season
The pre-season expectations are already coming in. The most popular teams, such as the Steelers, Packers, Bears and Cowboys are again among the favourites to win the Super Bowl. The New England Patriots are expected to make the Super Bowl again, but what role will Brady play this year. He’s signed a two-year contract but at 42, his time on the pitch is running out. Which gives way to other players to take some of the top stats and achievements. For instance, who will get the most rushing touchdowns this season? Lamar Jackson’s looking like a strong favorite. Another ageing quarterback, Eli Manning, looks to have tough competition, especially when Daniel Jones is looking on form. It’ll only take a couple of games for him to establish himself as top choice.
More importantly, though, who’s going to be winning those all-important games. At the top of the list, the Patriots are expected to sit at over/under 11 wins. But it’s time to hedge your bets as the Chiefs, Eagles, Rams and Saints are also expected to be winning double-digit games. On the flip side, other teams might try to build on from previous disappointments. For instance, the Arizona Cardinals aren’t expected to win many games, especially with an unseasoned coach and quarterback.
Meanwhile, the Miami Dolphins haven’t won a playoff since the 2000 postseason. Perhaps it’s the year of the Broncos? They’ve had some success recently, and 2019 looks promising since signing Noah Fant and Dalton Risner. They could have the support they need to move up from the third or fourth spots.
‘I like football’
While not trying to emulate Brick’s “I love lamp” quote from Anchor Man, straight-faced Bill Belichick’s just as deadpan. When he said: “I like football. I like football season all of the things that go with it,” in his no-nonsense way, we’re hoping he means continuing on his team’s track record. After almost 20 years with the Patriots, and the potential of another Super Bowl final on the horizon, we’re hoping that one day, Belichick might even “love” football. But don’t hold your breath.