Patriot Nation Is a Bit Skittish at 4-0 [OPINION]
The defending world champion New England Patriots are 4-0 to start the 2019 campaign. They've played one less than a mediocre team in Pittsburgh, two crappy opponents in the Dolphins and Jets, and the Buffalo Bills, who appear to be a quality opponent.
In the middle of all that, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels has had to scratch one playbook, altering it for superstar receiver Antonio Brown, only to re-write the original game plan for the team after just one week when Brown was let go.
Through the first three weeks of the season, the Patriots dominated. They outscored the opposition 107-17 and the defense gave up zero touchdowns. The Patriots then took to the road to face the Bills in Buffalo, who were also undefeated, and whose fans can be very much a factor at New Era Field.
An unimpressive offensive effort by McDaniels, the offensive line, Tom Brady and Josh Gordon put a lot of pressure on the Pats defense, which was up to the challenge.
Without linebacker Dont'a Hightower, they were still dominant. Linebacker Jaime Collins has been tremendous since his most welcomed return to the Patriots this summer. He already has three interceptions. The young, deep cornerback pool is balling, too.
As we went over Week 1 picks on-air, I predicted that this team will lead the league in interceptions and even flirt with the record, which is an insane 49 held by the 1961 Chargers. The Pats have 10 at the quarter-mark but are possibly in the running.
Once N'Keal Harry, Josh Gordon, Phillip Dorsett, and Julian Edelman are all out there together to join tight end Ben Watson and the deep pool of running backs of James White, Sony Michel, Rex Burkhead, and Brandon Bolden, this team will be on all cylinders to match the vaunted defense.
New kicker Mike Nugent has looked great in practice so far. The veteran replaced Stephen Gostkowski, who is having season-ending hip surgery and Nugent is likely going to outperform what we saw to date.
Fear not, Patriot Nation. The O-line is getting healthy, the tight end situation upgrades with Ben Watson's debut and as the Patriots face the upcoming iron of the league in the next seven weeks, go in with confidence. The Washington Redskins are about as bad as the Dolphins, so I expect a 27-point blowout, in the area of 37-10 kind of game.
Only Kansas City and New England are undefeated with four wins and San Francisco unbeaten with three wins as they already had their bye week last Sunday.
Your team is the best. Act accordingly.
Ken Pittman is the host of The Ken Pittman Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon. Contact him at ken.pittman@