Patriots face worst Super Bowl odds since Bill Belichick became coach in 2000
Patriots face worst Super Bowl odds since Belichick became coach in 2000 originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
The New England Patriots have made a couple good additions to their roster and coaching staff this offseason.
They finally hired a real offensive coordinator, Bill O'Brien, after a disastrous offensive coaching situation in 2022 highlighted by Matt Patricia being the play-caller and Joe Judge serving as the quarterbacks coach. O'Brien will fill the OC and QB coach roles in 2023. Adrian Klemm also was hired to be the new offensive line coach.
The Patriots bolstered their offense in free agency by signing wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster, tight end Mike Gesicki, running back James Robinson, and offensive tackles Calvin Anderson and Riley Reiff.
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And yet, oddsmakers are giving the Patriots very little chance of winning Super Bowl LVIII in February. In fact, the Patriots' Super Bowl odds haven't been this bad in the 24-years that Bill Belichick has been the team's head coach.
ESPN's Mike Reiss recently gave a breakdown of the historical context behind the Patriots' odds to win the Super Bowl:
"Las Vegas doesn’t believe in New England, which is 70-1 to win the Super Bowl this season, per Caesars Sportsbook, the Patriots' longest preseason Super Bowl odds under Belichick (2000-present)," Reiss wrote. "According to SportsOddsHistory.com, it’s the franchise’s longest preseason Super Bowl odds since 1993, when it was 100-1. From the silver-lining department: The last time the Patriots entered a season at least 50-1 to win the Super Bowl was 2001 … and they won their first title with Belichick and Tom Brady (20-17 over the St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI)."
The Patriots do face plenty of challenges on the road back to the Super Bowl.
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The quarterback situation is uncertain. Mac Jones had a very good rookie season in 2021 but then took a huge step back in 2022. Will he be able to take a massive leap forward in his development under O'Brien? The offensive line was a mess last season, too. Despite the additions of Smith-Schuster and Gesicki, the Patriots still don't have a ton of playmakers on offense. There's no elite-level pass-catcher that keeps opposing defensive coordinators awake at night. The defense was very good in 2022, but it also lost longtime safety Devin McCourty to retirement earlier this month.
You also have to consider that the Patriots have a very tough 2023 schedule and play in an AFC East that could send three teams to the playoffs next season. The Patriots could realistically finish last in the division, especially if star quarterback Aaron Rodgers is traded to the New York Jets.
Of course, all it takes is one bold trade to shake up these odds. If the Patriots acquired former MVP quarterback Lamar Jackson from the Baltimore Ravens, they'd be a legit contender in the AFC again.
But until a move like that happens -- if it ever does -- it's hard to view the Patriots as a team capable of getting anywhere near the Super Bowl next season.