“Not Going to Count Them Out” – Former NFL Man Refuses to Rule Out the Patriots in Playoff Race

Published 12/10/2020, 11:50 AM EST
Nov 22, 2020; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt (99) celebrates with linebacker Jake Martin (54) after a play during the fourth quarter against the New England Patriots at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports


The departure of Tom Brady was always going to leave a big void to fill for Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots. They started off on a strong note with veteran Cam Newton as their new starting quarterback but faltered at the midway stage of the season. At one point, the Patriots had a 2-5 record in the league.

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But coach Belichick has helped orchestrate a decent turnaround in recent weeks. Their 0-45 win over the Los Angeles Chargers last weekend propelled New England to a 6-6 record as we start Week 14. They remain third in the AFC East behind the Buffalo Bills and the Miami Dolphins but still have a slim chance of making the playoffs.

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Nate Burleson tips New England Patriots to challenge for a knockout spot

On today’s segment of GMFB, co-host Nate Burleson spoke about how Cam Newton-led New England Patriots still have an outside shot of making the playoffs this season.

“Yes, I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again, if they’re mathematically in, I’m not going to count them out. And it’s not just because of Cam Newton, you can have your opinion on whether Cam is playing terribly, if he can throw the ball or not. One thing we do know with Josh McDaniels, Bill Belichick and the host of players they do have on this offence, they know how to finish and not a game, I’m just talking about historically, how many times have we said throughout the last 20 years? they’re not finished in December.”

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Nov 9, 2020; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Cam Newton (1) high fives wide receiver Gunner Olszewski (80) before their game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

“Why is that important? Because those teams that might be in the wild card spots, or even in the hunt, they’re gonna fall into one of those squads that we’ve been hyping all year, they’re going to falter because they haven’t been here. They haven’t experienced this….they know what it’s like to play in the month of December, December is different,” Burleson said on the show.

The Patriots have lost just one of their last five outings in the NFL. They will back themselves to repeat the same when they take on Sean McVay’s Los Angeles Rams this weekend. A win in Week 14, will undoubtedly boost team morale ahead of a tough end to the season.

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Daniel Arambur

1669 articles

Daniel Arambur is an NFL writer and content strategist for EssentiallySports.With more than 1,000 articles, he is one of the senior writers in the NFL cohort at ES. A mass media graduate from the University of Mumbai, Daniel has found the perfect blend of vocation and passion in the sports content niche.

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