2021 Season Preview: The Pats are handing the quarterback job to rookie Mac Jones hoping to rebound from their first losing record since 2000. New England has always been clever about signing free agents to plug holes and they did just that in the off-season. Three talented new receivers are in the starting lineup and if Jones can’t work smoothly with them, veteran Cam Newton is ready to step back into the starting role.
2020 Season Roundup: Cam Newton tried to fill his shoes, but simply didn’t have the weapons on offense to do better than a 7–9 record. Special teams and defense stepped up for New England, with Stephon Gilmore, Gunner Olszewski, and Jake enjoying good years.
2020 Season Preview: The Pats will be without Tom Brady for the first time in a long time, but coach Bill Belichick has Cam Newton under center with some good runners and receivers on his side. The defensive line has some question marks, but the rest of the D is solid, led by linebacker Dont’a Hightower and cornerback Stephone Gilmore. If Newton can stay healthy, New England fans can expect another trip to the playoffs.
February 1, 2020: Cornerback Stephone Gilmore was named 2019 NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
2019 Season Roundup: The Patriots looked like they were headed to another AFC Championship game, but a late-season slump and a loss in the Wild Card game ended their season early. Tom Brady was sensational at age 42, but looked tired by playoff time. He connected with Julian Edelman 100 times during the regular season and also had success throwing to running back James White. The Pats won many games with their defense, which starred defensive backs Stephone Gilmore and Devin McCourty, and middle linebacker Don’t’a Hightower. Most fans would be happy with a 12–4 season, but New England fans were left hungry for more.
October 27, 2019: Bill Belichick won the 300th game of his career (including postseason games). He joined George Halas and Don Shula as the only members of football’s “300 Club.”
2019 Season Preview: Fans outside of Massachusetts should be celebrating the retirement of Rob Gronkowski, a favorite target of Tom Brady’s for multiple championships. Opponents are also hoping it takes the Pats a month or two to settle on an every-down running back. New England loaded up on runners and receivers in the off-season, so Brady may not miss a beat. The defense is still solid, even after pass rusher Trey Flowers left as a free agent.
2018 Season Roundup: The Patriots won the AFC East and beat the Chiefs on the road in a wild conference championship game 37–31 in overtime. Two weeks later, New England won its sixth Super Bowl, defeating the Rams 13–3 in a defensive struggle. Julian Edelman caught 10 passes and was named Super Bowl MVP. Tom Brady, the NFL MVP, threw 29 touchdown passes and running backs Sony Michel and James White did a great job carrying and catching the football for the Pats. The defense did not feature any superstars, but made big stops when it had to.
2018 Season Preview: The Pats used the long ball as a major weapon last season and quarterback Tom Brady put up an MVP season. In 2018, Brady will be using more quick, short passes to Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski, which should keep his 41-year-old body safe from big hits. The New England defense won’t scare anyone, but as usual it will find away to keep points off the board in close games.
2017 Season Roundup: The Patriots won the AFC East for the ninth year in a row and defeated the Titans and Jaguars in the playoffs to earn a return trip to the Super Bowl. The Pats lost 41–33 to the Philadelphia Eagles. Tom Brady threw for 4.577 yards and 32 TDs during the season and was named NFL MVP. Rob Gronkowski led the team with 69 receptions and 1,084 yards.
October 15, 2017: Tom Brady guided the Pats to victory for the 187th time. No quarterback has won more games. Peyton Manning and Brett Favre were tied for 186 wins.
2017 Season Preview: The Pats have a challenging schedule in 2017, and receiver Julian Edelman is out for the season. However, if Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski stay healthy, New England should win 12 to 14 games and be a favorite to reach the Super Bowl. If the defense steps up, a perfect 16–0 season is not out of the question!
2016 Season Roundup: The Patriots were sensational from start to finish in 2016. They had the league’s best defense and only threw two interceptions all season. The Pats won 14 games and finished atop the AFC East for the eighth year in a row. They defeated the Texans and Steelers in the playoffs to reach the Super Bowl. After falling behind the Falcons 28–3, the Pats staged a historic comeback and won the game 34–28 in overtime. It was the 208th win of Tome Brady’s career—the most ever by a starting quarterback.
2016 Season Preview: The Patriots should be able to survive their first four games without Tom Brady. When he returns from his league suspension, look out—he has lots of weapons on offense. The running game is good and could get better; the New England receivers, led by Rob Gronkowski, are the best in the AFC. The defense isn’t great, but it’s good enough to get the Pats back to the Super Bowl.
December 27, 2015: Tom Brady threw his 36th touchdown pass, which led the NFL for the fourth time in his career.
September 9, 2015: Tom Brady beat the Steelers for the 161st win of his career. He broke Brett Favre’s record for most wins by a quarterback for one team.
2015 Season Preview: New England fans can look forward to a stronger defensive line, but may have to worry about a weaker pass defense. There’s nothing to worry about on offense, where Tom Brady leads the team into battle against an easier-than-usual schedule of opponents.
February 2, 2015: Rookie Malcolm Butler intercepted a pass at the goal line to preserve a 28–24 victory for the Patriots. It was Tom Brady’s fourth championship and third Super Bowl MVP award. The Seattle Seahawks appeared to have the game won until this last-minute turnover.
September 14, 2014: With New England’s victory over the Vikings, Bill Belichick became the sixth coach in NFL history with 200 wins.
September 2, 2014: New England came very close to winning an AFC championship last season, and in 2014 they are even better. The Pats will be tough to pass against thanks to a deep and talented defense led by newcomer Darrelle Revis. If receiver Rob Gronkowski returns to form after surgery, Tom Brady should have all the weapons he needs to make a run at the Super Bowl.
December 29, 2013: Kicker Stephen Gotkowski broke a 49-year-old team record with 158 points for the season. The old record was held by Gino Cappelletti. Cappelletti was a kicker and pass receiver.
September 4, 2013: Tom Brady begins the 2013 season without his usual strong group of receivers. He and coach Bill Belichick will find a clever way to solve this problem. In the meantime, the team’s defense is young and athletic, so Brady won’t have to put 30 points on the scoreboard every week.
February 2, 2013: The New England offense was magnificent in 2012, leading the club to 12 victories. Tom Brady passed for 4,827 yards and 34 touchdowns, Wes Welker made 118 catches, and Stevan Ridley rushed for over 1,200 yards in his second NFL season. In the AFC title game, the Pats built a 13–7 halftime lead against the Ravens, but could not score in the second half.
December 30, 2012: The Patriots made 28 first downs in a game against the Miami Dolphins. That gave them 444 for the season—the most in NFL history.
Summer, 2012: Tom Brady leads a high-powered offense into battle hoping to return to the Super Bowl. If the defense can hold its own in close games, the Patriots should make it back to the playoffs. From there—as New England knows all too well—anything can happen.