The New England Patriots clinched home-field advantage throughout the playoffs last weekend and now they get to sit back and watch the wild card round take place. They will be playing the lowest qualifying seed next weekend, and after that, they will play a conference game, before playing in the Super Bowl should they win those first two matches. There hasn’t been a true stand-out team this season, but is there anyone capable of beating the Patriots in New England, and knocking them out of the playoffs before they reach another Super Bowl?
The latest NFL betting has the Patriots +200 favorites to lift the Lombardi Trophy for a second successive year. With a kind path to the final, many would agree that they deserve their favoritism; when you look at who could possibly beat them at the Gillette Stadium, there doesn’t appear to be a long list of contenders.
Of those in the wild card round, the Kansas City Chiefs look to be the only viable threat to the Patriots, but should they qualify then they would have to travel to Pittsburgh to visit the Steelers before getting the chance to play the Patriots. Should the Chiefs make it then they will be looking for a repeat of the game from Kareem Hunt on season-opening night, where he scored three touchdowns as his side defeated the Patriots.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are the other team in the AFC to have a wild card and they look the most likely opponents for the Patriots in the Conference Championship game. The Steelers have the offensive players to play against anyone, but so do New England. Of the two defenses, the Patriots are probably slightly the better and that can give them the edge should they meet. Any team with Antonio Brown is a huge threat as he has over 1500 yards this season, but his current status is unknown due to injury.
With question marks over the two main challengers in the AFC, it seems that it would take a huge shock for the New England Patriots not to reach the Super Bowl in 2018. They have a swagger about them that all good teams have, and they are genuinely feared by their opponents. They have been there and done it on more than one occasion, and when they are together in their locker room, their squad will be full of belief.
The New England Patriots are set for a long run to the Super Bowl this season. They are favorites to lift the Lombardi Trophy once more, and it doesn’t look like anyone is capable of stopping them from taking the AFC crown. Tom Brady looks to be playing some great football, despite being in his 40s, and there appears to be no slowing him down. He will again look to lead the Patriots all the way to the Super Bowl, and why wouldn’t they be confident of repeating their victory from last season.