The New England Patriots are even better than the rest of the NFL fears.
The Ringer’s Danny Heifetz suggested as much in a list of “Biggest Overreactions from NFL Week 1” he published Tuesday. The Patriots come in at No. 6, thanks to their 33-3 drubbing of the Pittsburgh Steelers, a game which prompted Heifetz to write bullishly “This Is the Most Talented Patriots Team We’ve Ever Seen.”
“New England’s defense … possibly the best unit the team has had in a decade, and the defense isn’t why people are terrified of this team,” Heifetz wrote. “The Patriots’ pass catching went from a question mark to a strength when Josh Gordon was reinstated.
“… That was just one of the scary parts of New England’s 33-3 demolition of Pittsburgh, which was the fourth-biggest margin of victory in Week 1 by a defending Super Bowl champion ever. The thought of putting Antonio Brown alongside Gordon and turning Julian Edelman, the Super Bowl MVP, into this team’s third receiver is harrowing — and immediately conjures thoughts of the Randy Moss–Wes Welker team.
“In case you think it sounds silly to invoke the 2007 Patriots, consider that the ’07 Pats averaged just over 36 points per game through five weeks. This Pats team scored 33 points against Pittsburgh and their next five games are against the Dolphins, Jets, Bills, and Washington. Matching that ’07 mark is certainly possible. The real test of how good this team is will be five weeks from now when it meets its true foil, Eli Manning and the Giants.”
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick wouldn’t approve of players reminiscing about 2007, overlooking the Patriots’ next five opponents or casting an eye on their Week 6 matchup against the New York Giants.
But New England’s players already are “on to Miami” and have no time to participate in such shenanigans, let alone read about them.
However, it’s in the nature of fans to overreact, and Heifetz draws a nice blueprint, which Patriots fans hope the team will construct into reality over the next few months.
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images