Almost every year there is a team that will without a doubt win the Super Bowl before the game is even played.
Last year it was the Colts, in 07 it was the undefeated Patriots, in 06 it was the Chargers, and so on and so on. Usually those teams end up losing at some point in the playoffs and kills everybody’s predictions. This year the projected winner is the New England Patriots (again), but this time I believe the projected winners will live up to the hype.
It’s weird trying to prove that the best team during the 2010 NFL season will win the Super Bowl, but like I mentioned before – the favorite doesn’t win every time. This year however, just feels like there is no way the Patriots lose in the playoffs. Let’s look at the facts.
It’s been 11 consecutive games where Tom Brady has not thrown an interception. Brady set the single-season record for most consecutive passes thrown without throwing a pick. Not only has Brady been careful with the ball, but the entire team set a record for fewest turnovers ever in a single season with just 10. Need more proof? How about the fact that the Patriots have home-field advantage during the playoffs and that they went 8-0 at home this season (the only team this year to do so).
Sure the home field advantage ends in the Super Bowl, but I can’t see the Bears, Seahawks, Falcons, or Packers beating the Patriots. The NFC team I see that stands the best chance against the Patriots would be the Packers, but they would have to really bring their A-game.
I really think that this years’ Patriots team is better than the 18-1 team from 2007. The 07 Patriots would just simply outscore the opponents with their one-dimensional passing attack. The passing attack was probably the greatest we’ve ever seen in NFL history, but when the Giants shut it down in the Super Bowl the Patriots shut down as well.
This year, the Pats finished in the top 10 for most rush yards per game with 123.3. Running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis finished the NFL with the most rushing touchdowns behind only Arian Foster. New England isn’t as flashy as they were a couple of years ago, but they are playing very smart football by not turning the ball over and taking what the defense gives them.
Even though there are a lot of positives, the Patriots are definitely not perfect. They rank 30th against the pass and allow 366.5 yards a game on defense. However, this is a bend but don’t break defense. They will allow a lot of yards but in the end they will force a couple turnovers and force teams to kick field goals instead of score touchdowns.
The Patriots have been playing this way all year long and when it comes to playoff time, Brady is Mr. Clutch. I don’t see any of the remaining playoff teams beating the Patriots this year and that’s why they are on their way to their fourth title in just eight years.