The New England Patriots are attempting to repeat as Super Bowl Champions in 2017. Recently, they were projected as the top team in the AFC.
Coming into the 2017 season, the New England Patriots are poised for another great season. Despite being without Tom Brady for the first four games of the season, the Patriots were able to finish with a 14-2 record. That record was the best in the AFC, and they secured home field throughout the playoffs.
This offseason, the Patriots did an excellent job keeping key players from the 2016 team, and they also added some players that might make the team even better on paper. This offseason, the Patriots have most notably added Stephon Gilmore, Brandin Cooks, and recently David Harris.
Recently, Pro Football Focus released their projected records for the teams in the AFC. The Patriots came in first with a 12-4 record. Here’s what Nathan Jahnke had to say about the Patriots.
"The defending Super Bowl champions will likely remain Super Bowl favorites until something doesn’t go their way. Only 12 running backs had 70 or more carries in 2016 and averaged more than 3 yards after contact per attempt. New England signed two of them in Mike Gillislee and Rex Burkhead. Brandin Cooks upgrades the wide receiver group, and there was no better free agent cornerback option to replace Logan Ryan than Stephon Gilmore. Their defensive line depth isn’t as strong as it has been in past years, and father time will catch up to Tom Brady sometime. Until then, the Patriots are the team to beat."
As Jahnke mentions, it’s hard to imagine the Patriots having a down season unless something goes horribly wrong.
This offseason, Brady looks to be in great shape despite turning 40-years-old in a few months. With arguably the best weapons around him in his career, Brady is a favorite to win the MVP award in 2017.
Even though 12 wins is a lot in the NFL, the Patriots can certainly exceed that number in 2017. If everyone stays healthy, this has the potential to be the best Patriots team yet.