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Why the New England Patriots Are Now the AFC's Best Team

Colin Cowherd: “The New England Patriots are the best team in the AFC. There are 7 or 8 boxes you need to check to get to a Super Bowl. Elite head coach – CHECK. Special teams above average – CHECK. A defense that is good and creates a consistent pass rush – CHECK. Are you situationally smart on both sides of the ball? CHECK. Can you control the line of scrimmage? CHECK. You don’t beat yourself – CHECK. The only box New England doesn’t check is ‘dynamic, vertical, playmakers', which you don’t have to have, but it helps so you don’t have to score on 9 and 10 play drives. Kansas City and Buffalo have dynamic deep threats, but those teams – let’s be honest – make more mistakes, they don’t run the football at all, and their offensive lines are kind of a work in progress. The Patriots never won Super Bowls with Randy Moss because teams that score quickly and can go over the top easily sometimes become too reliant on it. Kansas City and Buffalo aren’t nearly as good on defense, the run game, and controlling the clock as the Patriots are. Mac Jones doesn’t make the big mistake. Do I think he has limitations athletically? Yes. If he falls behind by two touchdowns, do I think he’s built to score quickly with this offense? No, not really. But New England has done this for 22 years. The more boring they are, the more Super Bowls they have won. They were exciting for about three years, the Randy Moss years, and they kind of became reliant on Randy Moss to save them. They weren’t as good at running the football, and they weren’t as good at the little stuff, and that’s just natural when it’s easier to score, and you’ve got big playmakers. They can’t fall behind but they don’t because they have the number 1 scoring defense, the number 1 red zone defense, they’re number two in takeaways, and they’re fifth in sacks. Remember, New England’s defense is this good and the weather is only getting worse. They’re stifling good quarterbacks with reasonable fall weather. Now add sideways 12 miles per hour wind in Foxboro. New England is not only the best AFC team now, they’re built for the next 6-8 weeks of winter football.” (Full Video Above)

Listen to Colin Cowherd explain why he thinks the surging 8-4 New England Patriots are the best team in the conference, a week after they throttled the AFC’s number 1 seed, Tennessee, for their sixth consecutive victory.

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