New England Patriots have one of NFL's toughest schedules in 2023

Buffalo Bills v New England Patriots
Buffalo Bills v New England Patriots / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

Based on 2022 records, the New England Patriots have one of the toughest schedules in the NFL for the 2023 season. Adding insult to injury here. According to the 2022 records of NFL teams, the Patriots have the third toughest schedule in 2023, by winning percentage.

The Philadelphia Eagles have the toughest schedule in the NFL in 2023, facing opponents with a .566 winning percentage. The next toughest schedule belongs to the Miami Dolphins, with a .554 winning percentage. The New England Patriots round out the top three, facing teams with a combined .549 winning percentage.

For those who may not know, the strength of schedule rankings are typically somewhat similar within the division. For example, all of the AFC East ranks in the top seven in terms of strength of schedule rankings. The Buffalo Bills and New York Jets round out the top seven, so they have the brutal matchups.

On the NFC side, the entire NFC East are inside the top eight in terms of strength of schedule rankings. The Eagles are first, the Cowboys and Giants are tied for fourth, and the Commanders are eighth.

We can attribute this to the six divisional opponents playing a bit part in this. Either way, the Pats have the second toughest schedule in the AFC and the third toughest overall. That does not bode well for their chances in 2023 to finish with a winning record and return to the playoffs.

The Pats do play the entire AFC West this year, so that could be an issue. Both the Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Chargers won double digit games in 2022, and the Denver Broncos added Sean Payton this offseason.

The Las Vegas Raiders also bested the Pats in 2022, so that won't be an easy game. Will the New England Patriots get a break for the 2023 season? Between their tough schedule and them having to play an international game, I'm not sure this club has gotten anything but bad fortune thus far.