Not too long ago, the New England Patriots’ humiliation signaled terrible things for their upcoming opponent.
In those days, Tom Brady was the quarterback and there were many talented athletes all around him.
The Patriots are no longer able to exact revenge on anyone. If there was ever any doubt that the Patriots’ hegemony was a thing of the past, it was confirmed on Sunday.
In Week 4, the Patriots were defeated 38-3 by the Dallas Cowboys. While the Patriots’ worst loss in Bill Belichick’s coaching history was an extreme, they had before bounced back with memorable victories. The New Orleans Saints would have had a problem on Sunday in the past. The Saints gave Belichick the second-worst defeat of his coaching career in the current situation. In a game that was never in doubt, the Saints prevailed 34-0. According to ESPN Stats and Info, Belichick had never trailed by 30 points at home before the Saints seized a 31-0 lead in the fourth quarter. That amounts to two weeks of unwelcome history in a long career. The Patriots are currently 1-4.
When the Patriots were written off in previous seasons, Bill Belichick would snarkily address the media and New England would go on a winning streak, casting doubt on everyone’s predictions. That’s not happening this season, it would appear. The Patriots are simply awful. Top rated sportsbooks have the Patriots near the bottom of the odds board at +15000 to win the Super Bowl. That translates into 150-1
In a season that has already seen many low points, the Patriots’ lowest point occurred in the third quarter. At the Saints’ 40-yard line, fourth-and-3 belonged to New England. In the Patriots’ 24-0 deficit. they threw a punt. They effectively gave up. In a circumstance where going for it was definitely called for, Belichick was admitting that he had no faith in his offense’s ability to achieve 3 yards. It was a bad decision made by Belichick and a reflection of how awful New England has been this year.
Belichick is still an all-time great coach; but, his personnel choices are making his job more harder as a coach. This is due to the disdain many people have for him and the poor performance of the past few seasons. In the NFL, the Patriots may have the fewest elite players. Pass rusher Matthew Judon, who was sidelined on Sunday with an injury, is likely their best player. Judon is a good player, but not at the same caliber as Nick Bosa or T.J. Watt. And… whew is the Patriots’ second-best player. Good luck figuring that one out. Regardless of who you choose, they won’t be attractive or deserving of the position of second-best player on an NFL squad.
If New England had a quarterback, everything may be alright, but they don’t. After a bright debut season, Mac Jones has since started to lose steam. Last week against the Cowboys, he committed costly turnovers that led to New England losing the game. Early on Sunday, under pressure, he made a blind throw to the middle of the field, and Saints safety Tyrann Mathieu had a simple pick six. After then, everything deteriorated. Jones will continue to be the Patriots’ starter, Belichick said following the game, but there aren’t many other possibilities. The fourth quarter saw the introduction of Bailey Zappe. Belichick claimed that Jones’ performance wasn’t the reason he was replaced last week.
The Belichick controversy will pick up momentum. The Patriots’ legend, who helped them win six Super Bowls, could they really fire him? We might learn the answer if the remaining games of the season proceed similarly to the last two.
Nothing in the NFL is everlasting. Brady starting for the Patriots during a 19-year span when they were largely invincible may never happen again. Watching the Patriots lose consecutive games made that time seem like a century ago.