Will Patriots Serve As ‘Surprise’ Team? NFL Analyst Believes So

' ... There's a reason to be excited this could be a playoff team'

by

August 8, 2021

The New England Patriots improved their roster on paper this offseason, and it’s prompted many to question just how serious the team should be taken entering the 2021 campaign.

Pat Kirwan, a former NFL scout and co-host of the “Movin’ The Chains” show on Sirius XM NFL Radio, seems to think quite highly of the group led by head coach Bill Belichick.

“This is a surprise team on the horizon,” Kirwan said while on with co-host Jim Miller, as transcribed by ESPN’s Mike Reiss on Sunday. “People that haven’t been thinking of them, like me, but after you watch them and study them, there’s a reason to be excited this could be a playoff team.”

Kirwan specifically noted the impact of Patriots rookie quarterback Mac Jones, who seems to be gaining ground in the competition with fellow signal-caller Cam Newton.

“(Jones) is not operating like a rookie, that’s clear to me,” Kirwan added. “He has poise, good arm strength. He’s more what Josh (McDaniels) wants to do, and how he’s done it in the past.

“… I wouldn’t be surprised if by October we see (Jones) under center.”

Newton is the perceived starter entering the season, but if Jones can continue to, as the team says, “stack days together,” well, Belichick could be in for a tough decision.

Thumbnail photo via Paul Rutherford/USA TODAY Sports Images
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