Rex Ryan swung and missed on his Patriots prediction last season, but that isn’t stopping him from going back to the well.
Ryan was pretty down on New England in the 2018 campaign, only to watch Tom Brady and Co. hoist yet another Lombardi Trophy. But following the Patriots’ third loss in five games Sunday, the former New York Jets and Buffalo Bills head coach feels confident he won’t end up with egg on his face this time around.
“Nobody’s afraid of ’em. I can promise you that,” Ryan said Monday on ESPN’s “Get Up.” “Last year I said the same thing, that it was the worst Patriot team. They get home-field advantage, and that was huge or whatever, and then if it’s not for an offside call they get beat. I’m telling you, this team’s not even close to that team last year. They can’t run the football, they can’t protect the quarterback, nobody can get separation. I’m sorry, they’re one-and-done in the playoffs.”
Unfortunately for Patriots fans, Ryan’s prediction might not even be that hot of a take. New England is shaping up to meet Kansas City in the divisional round of the playoffs, and the Patrick Mahomes-led Chiefs have proved over the past year-plus that they’re an even match with the Patriots. KC now knows it can win in Foxboro, and it’s tough to imagine Mahomes and Co. would be at all intimidated if it had to play at Gillette Stadium in January.
But a lot can change in three weeks, and the Patriots need to make the most out of these final regular-season games as they vie to cement their identity.