The New England Patriots are still firmly in the 2022 NFL playoff race with two games remaining and are clinging to their last bit of hope. Even though the Patriots seemed to look dead in the water, they are still clinging to a bit of hope.
The 7-8 club has two crucial games left in 2022. First, they play at home against the Miami Dolphins. Their final game comes in Buffalo in week 18. The team may have to win both of those to get in, but it appears to be possible now.
First, the team has gotten a huge break with Dolphins’ signal caller Tua Tagovailoa now set to miss the upcoming game with a concussion. New England will be tasked with trying to take down Teddy Bridgewater, and I like their chances to do that.
The Jets, another 7-8 team, are facing off against the Seahawks. I’d say the Patriots have a bit more of a chance to win in week 17 than the Jets do. New York is set to start Mike White as he’s been medically cleared.
There is a small chance that New England’s week 18 matchup against the Bills becomes a much easier one. Here’s how.
In week 17, Buffalo can actually clinch the #1 seed in the AFC playoffs. They’d have to beat the Cincinnati Bengals and have the Kansas City Chiefs lose to the Denver Broncos.
While unlikely that both happen, if they do, then the Bills could realistically rest some of their starters in week 18, where the Patriots could be playing for a Wild Card spot.
There are likely countless other scenarios at play here, and that’s the beauty of the NFL. However, there is a clear path here for New England, even if it’s a bit unlikely. The first order of business is for them to take down the Miami Dolphins led by Teddy Bridgewater.
Mac Jones and the offense will need to be at their best, and they have shown flashes of being competent. Luckily, the Dolphins’ defense is nothing special.