Nick Wright believes the New England Patriots can win Super Bowl LIV.

But if they do, according to Wright, they’ll do so in spite of Tom Brady.

Brady’s numbers are down across the board this season, yet the Patriots are 10-1 thanks to their defense and special teams. New England’s offense, meanwhile, has been stagnant, and Wright isn’t banking on vintage Brady reemerging at age 42.

“(Brady) isn’t even the guy he was this past January, much less the guy he was over the last two decades,” Wright said on Wednesday’s episode of “First Things First” on FS1. “What Tom Brady is going to do and what he does better to this day than just about any quarterback in football this side of Russell Wilson: He will not make the critical mistake. He understands time, score, situation, strengths of the team, and so he gets how good the defense is, what a tactical advantage they have and that if he plays a clean game, they are going to be nearly impossible to beat, especially against inferior competition. But do I fear that Tom Brady is going to drive the ball 85 yards for a game-winning touchdown? Not in 2019, I don’t.”

Brady has completed 62.2 percent of his passes and thrown for 2,942 yards with 15 touchdowns to five interceptions through 11 games this season. The Patriots quarterback hasn’t been horrible, by any means. He’s just been average, at best, and far from the perennial MVP candidate we’ve grown accustomed to seeing throughout his storied career.

Now, there still are some who believe Brady might turn things around down the stretch and help carry New England to a seventh Super Bowl title. Wright isn’t among those supporters, though, for he believes New England’s bid for another Lombardi Trophy will fall short if it depends on the performance of No. 12.

“The question of: Do you still fear the Patriots? Of course. Do you think the Patriots can win the Super Bowl? I’m not picking them right now, but of course they can,” Wright said. “But do I think it’s going to be because Tom Brady has one more or two more or three more all-time, pantheon moments — down four (points), two and a half minutes left, bad weather? No, I don’t. I have seen no evidence that at 42 years old he can do it.”

Brady doubled down a short time later Wednesday while appearing on FS1’s “The Herd” with Colin Cowherd, pointing to the Denver Broncos’ ability to win Super Bowl 50 in February 2016 despite Peyton Manning looking like a shell of himself.

“He’s not what Peyton was in ’15 — Peyton in ’15 was awful. Tom Brady’s not awful right now; he’s just below average,” Wright said. “But the defense is sensational and where I will give him credit is this: He understands how good the defense is and he does not make the killer mistake. He does not give the ball to the other team. He is a great game manager at this moment. But everyone is waiting for Tom Brady to activate the GOAT juice.

“Everyone says to me, ‘Would you want to see him down four (points), two minutes left. Wouldn’t you be afraid?’ And I say, ‘Well, last year he was down four with two minutes left in the AFC Championship Game and threw a pick to lose the game.’ Now, they got bailed out (by a penalty) and then he ends up driving the field. He’s not even that good anymore, so no, I’m not worried about Brady. But (Bill) Belichick and that defense and home-field advantage might be able to drag Brady across the finish line.”

Feels like we’ve seen this movie before.

Thumbnail photo via Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports Images