3. New England Patriots
Coming off a 2019 season where the New England Patriots won the AFC East, the team relied on defense to set the tone on a weekly basis. That will need to continue during the upcoming season unless Cam Newton can return near his 2015 MVP form.
With so many players opted out due to Covid-19 concerns, looking to take a risk and sign Earl Thomas makes more sense. One of the key opt-outs for the Patriots included starting safety Patrick Chung, who the team will have to replace.
The Buffalo Bills will have an improved offense, with the acquisition of Stefon Diggs to fill the No. 1 receiver role. Further solidifying the secondary would help the Patriots keep their top competitor in the AFC East better in check in head-to-head matchups.
The Patriots have shown an ability to bring in established but troubling locker room personalities and experience success doing so. When it doesn’t work out, they aren’t hesitant to sever ties and rely on the next man up.