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Week 18 Draft Pick Scenarios for the New England Patriots

Week 18 is critical for the Patriots. After a loss to Buffalo in Week 17, New England fell to an abysmal 4-12 record. This positions them to have the third-draft pick by a slight margin. They are tied with Commanders, who are also 4-12 and currently have the second pick, but Washington has the strength of schedule edge over them by the slimmest of margins (Patriots .515, Commanders .518). They also have the same record as the Cardinals who have a .567 strength of schedule.

A top-four pick wouldn't be bad, but that's where all the problems come into play. The Giants, Titans, and Chargers are all 5-11. If the Patriots win against the Jets this week, and all the teams mentioned lose, there is a chance that New England can fall to the seventh pick. This would likely take them out of the race for the top three projected quarterbacks, and things would get interesting. The Panthers have clinched the first pick (for the Bears) so, New England is looking anywhere from pick 2-7.

Pick Two Scenarios:

1) Jets defeat Patriots, Commanders defeat Cowboys

This would put Washington at 5-12 and New England at 4-13. Cowboys are looking to lock up their division with a win, so losing to the Commanders doesn't seem too likely. Patriots also haven't lost to the Jets since 2015, so it'll be interesting to see if Belichick still looks to maintain that record or is on board with losing (not likely). It could be his last game ever as coach of the Patriots, so I'm sure he wants to go out victorious.

2) Patriots defeat Jets, Commanders defeat Cowboys, Cardinals defeat Seahawks


Falcons defeat Saints, and any two of the Raiders, Packers, Colts, or Steelers to lose.


Saints defeat Falcons and the Ravens, Texans, Bears, and Broncos to win.

The Pats, Cardinals, and Commanders would have the same record still, and Washington and Arizona would have a higher strength of schedule. Additionally, the Patriots hold any tiebreaker if they were to tie with Washington on strength of schedule since they played earlier this year, with Washington coming out on top. Commanders beating the Cowboys is the only thing that might be an issue. Arizona just took down Philly so they could give the Seahawks some trouble.

3) Jets defeat Patriots, Cowboys defeat Commanders


Falcons defeat Saints, and any two of the Raiders, Packers, Colts, or Steelers to lose


Saints defeat Falcons, and the Ravens, Texans, Bears, and Broncos to win

Pretty much the same scenario as No. 2. This would ensure that the Patriots either outright beat the Commanders in SOS or tie them when they have the tiebreaker to fall back on. The most crucial one is the Falcons-Saints game. The Patriots played the Saints this year and the Commanders played the Falcons. That game represents a massive swing in SOS that could singlehandedly put one team in front of the other.

What to do if not pick two:

Pick two is the only scenario that is official. Many other complications haven't been figured out yet to decide how the Patriots would get 3-7 (mainly because of strength of schedule). As of now, those are the ways that the Patriots can obtain the number two pick. This would be huge because if the Bears stick with Fields at quarterback like most of the fans want, the Patriots will have first dibs at any QB of their choice. If the Bears take a QB with the first pick, New England will still get the chance to draft the next top QB available. If they slide to pick three, they can still draft a top-two QB if Chicago doesn't take one. This is the most ideal situation for the Patriots.

If the Patriots win, and all the other 4-12 and 5-11 teams lose, they can end up anywhere between pick 4-7 depending on the strength of schedule. It is almost guaranteed that the Chargers and Titans can't pass up the Patriots in strength of schedule, which is the tiebreaker in this case. That results in the slimmest of chances for New England to be six or seven, but in a world where it does happen, this would be devastating because they desperately need a new starting quarterback.

Currently - Caleb Williams, Drake Maye, and Jayden Daniels are all projected to go anywhere in the top 10 (the outlier being Daniels). If they slide all the way to pick seven, there is a chance that those three quarterbacks are gone, and they will have to settle for an offensive lineman. If they are all gone, I can't see them reaching on a projected late first, early second quarterback such as J.J McCarthy, or Michael Penix Jr. They would probably go offensive lineman or wide receiver, and then try for a QB with their next pick. If the Chargers and Titans' strength of schedule is still higher (most likely will be) and the Patriots end up with the fifth pick, it is still possible that the top three quarterbacks go before them depending on if people trade up, cut players, etc.

The Patriots could always trade up too. There are many rumors that Bill Belichick is set to leave the team this offseason, opening up new doors for new staff to make a splash that the fans want. If they end up out of the top five or fifth overall, I can see them trade up to get their next quarterback in hopes of finding their franchise guy. Week 18 is important, and a final draft pick update will be given after the week concludes.

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1 comentário

Thomas Donovan
Thomas Donovan
04 de jan.

2) Patriots defeat Jets, Commanders defeat Cowboys, Cardinals defeat Seahawks


Falcons defeat Saints, and any two of the Raiders, Packers, Colts, or Steelers to lose.

Not with Falcons win + Raiders loss + Packers loss, Giants will get the 2nd pick.

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