If a game ever worked out perfectly for the New England Patriots, it was the one between the Buffalo Bills and the Miami Dolphins. The Fish were defeated by the Bills 19-14. Before the loss, Miami was at 4-5 and Buffalo at 3-6. By the end of the night both teams were 4-6 and tied for second in the AFC East.
New England and the Rest
The Pats are 6-3 and 2.5 games ahead of the Bills and the Dolphins. A win against the Indianapolis Colts will put them three full games up with just 6 more to play. Even if the Jets beat the St. Louis Rams, they will be at best 3 games behind New England. Also, at 4-6 the three teams in the AFC East that are not New England will have a tough time making the playoffs.
Pats Finding Their Rhythm
The Patriots have won 3 in a row and 5 of their last 6. This is a team that has found itself despite the fact that their defense is still uneven. But there have been recent upgrades and these can go a long way to ensuring future success. They are the only club in the AFC East who are in the plus area of PF/PA. They are +98. Miami at -18 is next best in PF/PA. The Jets are at -53 and the Bills at -69.
Even with a defense that can be inconsistent the Pats are by far the best of the AFC East. But what can be said about the rest of the AFC? What team looks to rival the Pats?
In the AFC, the Houston Texans look to be the toughest opponent for the Patriots. Houston not only has a great offense, they offer what may be one of the best defenses in the conference. Even the Baltimore Ravens, with their tough defense and solid offense, aren’t as good or as big a threat to New England as the Texans.
Next Up the Colts
The Indy Colts are next up for New England. Indy is also 6-3. The Pats outclass them in everyway except in pass defense. Despite that I think the New England home field advantage and their superior, experienced offense will win the day on Sunday. I’ll have a preview of the Colts and Pats in another day.