Patriots owner Robert Kraft was asked point blank at the owner’s meetings this past week if Bill Belichick’s job would be on the line if the team posts a losing record again. Here was his response:
“Look, I’d like him to break Don Shula’s record, but I’m not looking for any our players to get great stats. We’re about winning, and doing whatever we can to win. And that’s what our focus is now. And I — it’s very important to me that we make the playoffs, and that’s what I hope happens next year.”
While Kraft wants to make it back to the postseason, it likely won’t happen according to oddsmakers at FanDuel Sportsbook. Here are the odds:
Patriots to Make the Playoffs
New England has failed to make the postseason in two out of the last three seasons since Tom Brady left for the Buccaneers. The one year they did? They finished the regular season 1-3, squeaked into the playoffs as the AFC’s seventh seed, and lost to the Buffalo Bills 47-17 in the divisional round.
It hasn’t been good enough, and it sounds like Belichick may be close to the end of his leash.
After a disastrous 2022 with Matt Patricia calling plays and Mac Jones regressing from his rookie year, Kraft met with his head coach and outlined a plan that he wanted to see executed moving forward. In the 4+ months since their season ended, the Patriots have signed linebackers coach Jerod Mayo to a long-term contract (setting up a likely head coach-in-waiting), hired Bill O’Brien to be the offensive coordinator, and added several key weapons to Jones’ arsenal, including JuJu Smith-Schuster and Mike Gesicki.
Although they did lose wide receiver Jakobi Meyers to the Raiders, Smith-Schuster objectively has a higher ceiling and was cheaper to acquire than retaining Meyers. They also brought back defensive backs Jonathan Jones, Jalen Mills, and Jabrill Peppers.
Despite all of the above changes and improvements, New England’s win total is set at just 7.5 heading into 2023 according to FanDuel.
As bad as last season was, New England did finish 8-9 and had a chance to make the playoffs with a win in week eighteen. So as such… ⤵️
The Pick(s): Patriots to make the postseason +200 and OVER 7.5 wins
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