Rex Ryan declared last season that the New England Patriots had their worst roster in years.
The take didn’t age well, as the Patriots won Super Bowl LIII despite their flaws.
Well, being served a hearty dose of crow didn’t stop the former NFL head coach from going back to the well Monday, one day after the Patriots suffered a 28-22 loss to the Houston Texans. Although New England owns a 10-2 record, Ryan believes this Patriots team is the worst he’s ever seen.
“Absolutely. And I said it last year — and they were; I swear to God they were — and they still won the Super Bowl,” Ryan said on Monday’s episode of “Get Up” on ESPN. “So right now, I’m like, ‘Hey, this is the worst Patriots team I’ve ever seen’ Part II.”
The Patriots sure look vulnerable. Not only have they dropped two of their last four games after winning eight straight to begin the 2019 season. Their offense has been stagnant, with quarterback Tom Brady unable to overcome a dearth of weapons, a shoddy running game and unsteady offensive line play. Even Brady himself has been inconsistent at age 42.
“New England doesn’t scare anybody anymore, and it’s because of that. There is no talent out there,” Ryan said. “(Julian) Edelman’s your best player — he’s a slot receiver — and then James White’s your second-best? There’s nobody else.”
All told, Ryan isn’t writing off the Patriots, who have won six Super Bowl titles since the 2001 season. Brady still can make clutch throws, and Bill Belichick remains arguably the best coach in the NFL.
But Ryan, who is very familiar with the Patriots from his time coaching the New York Jets and Buffalo Bills, is skeptical of New England’s potential this season, believing the two GOATs — Brady and Belichick — might have too much on their plates all things considered.
“Whatever Tom Brady has left, because here’s the thing: We talk about their weapons and everything else, but they can’t run the football and they don’t protect the quarterback,” Ryan said. “So to me, it’s you’re out there because you have the greatest of all time — you’ve got the smartest quarterback that’s ever played and the best coach, and so that gives them a chance. They have to get a bye and they have to play at home.”
The road to the playoffs doesn’t get any easier for the Patriots in Week 14. They’ll welcome the Kansas City Chiefs to Foxboro this Sunday in a much-anticipated rematch of last season’s AFC Championship Game.
Thumbnail photo via Troy Taormina/USA TODAY Sports Images