Max Kellerman was the unofficial New England Patriots “hater of the year” last season, but even he’s willing to give credit where it’s due ahead of the 2019 NFL campaign.

Kellerman, whose claim that Tom Brady’s production would “fall off a cliff” in short order (still) hasn’t aged well, explained Tuesday on ESPN’s “First Take” why he believes the Patriots will represent the AFC in Super Bowl LIV despite being less talented than the Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Chargers.

“Luck is the residue of design,” Kellerman said after claiming the Patriots got lucky in the AFC Championship Game, when Brady’s fourth-quarter interception was negated by an offsides call on Chiefs defensive end Dee Ford. “The thing about the Patriots is (Bill) Belichick coaches them to a great record year in and year out, so they’re always in the playoffs. And then once you get in the playoffs and you’re going to play the other team tight — because Patriots games are frequently close; they’re a different team every week based on who they’re playing — then like the Patriots seem to get lucky a lot. But part of that is because they’re better prepared than the other team, because their coach is better prepared than the other team.”

This isn’t the hottest take, seeing as New England has made four Super Bowl appearances in the past five seasons. But it’s somewhat surprising coming from Kellerman, who has long been in Patriots fans’ crosshairs due to his skepticism over New England’s continued dominance.

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