The 2019 NFL schedule has been released, and so begins the analysis from every corner about which teams have the easiest and hardest schedule.

Over the years the New England Patriots have benefitted from a pretty weak AFC East, which typically results in their schedule being broadly perceived as easy, fairly or not. And while in some respects that’s true, not always is their out-of-conference slate a cakewalk.

During Thursday’s episode of “The Herd,” FOX Sports 1’s Colin Cowherd explained why the Pats by no means have it easy in 2019.

There certainly is some logic in what he’s saying. Just because the Patriots typically play certain teams well (i.e. the Houston Texans and Kansas City Chiefs), it doesn’t mean they’re an easy opponent when you view the schedule in a vacuum.

Of course, this is why they play the games, so we’ll have to wait a few months before we start seeing how all these games unfold.

Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images