Just a few short years ago, a little newspaper (11th in U.S. circulation) in New York known as the Post had a beef with the Patriots. After the whole scandal with videotaping that surrounded the Patriots and Bill Belichick, the newspaper held a grudge, only printing the word "Patriots" if there was an asterisk next to it, as to insist that everything they did wouldn't and shouldn't count. It was homerism at its worst.
Fast-forward a few years, and things have changed.
The Post released its NFL season preview this week, and columnist Steve Serby predicted the Patriots will win the AFC East with a 12-4 record. He said the Jets will finish 10-6.
According to the rest of the Post's predictions, that 10-6 mark will have the Jets' playoff fate undetermined, as three other teams have been thought to win 10 games as well.
While it's nice that the Post's tune has changed since the asterisk years, there's still some faulty reasoning behind the prediction. Serby says that Tom Brady has "a healthy Wes Welker," though there still could be some lingering effects from the receiver's preseason neck injury. Serby says that the Patriots' "defense has been infused with youth thanks to a plethora of high draft choices," though Belichick used just one of his first seven draft picks on a defensive player (Ras-I Dowling). Serby says that Taylor Price is a "promising second year" wide receiver, which shows he's more optimistic about Price than most Patriots fans. Serby also says that "there are young legs in the backfield now to help BenJarvus Green-Ellis and old reliable Kevin Faulk," but Faulk, as you know, is on the PUP list and most likely won't be playing until midseason at the earliest.
Regardless, seeing the Patriots as AFC East champs isn't what most New York commuters wanted to see when they flipped open the Post.
Who's coming out on top this year?
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