We as Patriots fans know the golden rule: focus on one week at a time. The Patriots are entering the final week of the 2019 season and will most likely be the number two seed in the AFC. But, it never hurts to have some fun and look ahead toward next season. The Patriots 2020 schedule was released, in regards to the opponents they would be playing.
I have a few thoughts.
The Traveling Is Going To Be ROUGH
The Patriots will be traveling far and wide in 2020. Besides the AFC East, the Patriots will be playing against the AFC West as well as the NFC West. They have to travel twice to Los Angeles to take on the Chargers and the Rams. They also have to go to Kansas City, Houston, and the loudness that is Seattle. It's a good thing that the Patriots have their own jets, because they're going to be spending a lot of time in them next season.
The Quarterbacks Will Give The Patriots Problems
Look, I'm not going to lie here. The Patriots schedule regarding opposing quarterbacks scares the heck out of me. They will be playing elite quarterbacks in 2020. Whether it's at home or on the road, they have tough tests left and right.
Pats Road Schedule
Look at the quarterbacks that the Patriots have to play just on the road. You have Patrick Mahomes who was the 2018 MVP. We all know that Mahomes is dangerous and can extend plays with his legs. He's beaten the Patriots in Foxborough, so he won't be afraid of playing the Patriots in general. Then there's Deshaun Watson, who has connected well with wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins and made the Texans a contender this year. Russell Wilson will be an MVP runner up in Seattle and that's going to be tough to play against. If Philip Rivers returns, the Chargers always hang in there with good teams. The only one that doesn't scare me as much is Jared Goff. The Patriots have taken care of Goff on the biggest stage, and the Rams underachieved BIG time in 2019.
Pats Home Schedule
The Patriots home schedule isn't any more assuring. You have to play Baltimore and Lamar Jackson, who is the favorite to win the 2019 MVP award. The Ravens aren't afraid of the Patriots and match up extremely well with them. The 49ers come to town, with Jimmy Garoppolo wanting to show all of New England what they missed out for years to come. Kyler Murray and the Cardinals come to town, and we know that the Patriots defense has struggled with mobile quarterbacks. Jon Gruden and the Raiders visit Foxborough, and the curse of the tuck-rule will be on Gruden's mind. Probably not, but anyways...Derek Carr will be under center and he is very inconsistent. But when he's on, the Raiders are that much better. Same thing with Denver's quarterback Drew Lock. He's unproven and he will struggle mightily in Gillette. Other than the Broncos, I think the Patriots have a very tough stretch of home games against good quarterbacks.
2020 will not be an easy season for the Patriots. They lucked out this year with having the awful NFC East, along with the mediocre AFC North (minus the Ravens) and getting the record they have in 2019. In 2020 Bill Belichick better be ready to do his best work yet.