Things aren’t going great in New England Patriots land these days.
The team is 2-5, its worst start since 2000. Cam Newton hasn’t looked like the answer at quarterback in recent games. The team’s defense has taken a step back, and its best player may have been on the trade block. Bill Belichick is openly talking about the team experiencing the limits of the salary cap.
Rex Ryan has apparently seen enough.
During an appearance on ESPN Radio, the former New York Jets and Buffalo Bills head coach declared the Patriots’ run of dominance under Belichick and Tom Brady is over. He also decided to credit the majority of the dynasty to Brady.
From the New York Post:
“It’s over,” the former Jets coach said Monday on ESPN Radio’s “Keyshawn, JWill & Zubin” show. “It’s flat-out over. They’re [3.5] games behind Buffalo … and they’re not going to win the wild card. So yeah, look, the playoff run is over. Pass the torch to the Buffalo Bills. I think [the Patriots are] going to end up being behind Miami when it’s all said and done as well.
“This is what I thought was coming. I told everybody that they had no weapons for the last three years, but they had the greatest player in the history of our game in Tom Brady. You see how great he is? He took this team to the playoffs [last year] and actually won a Super Bowl two years ago.
“To me, it just shows also that the greatest player in the game has a hell of a lot bigger impact than the greatest coach in the game.”
If true, it was quite the 19-year run.
Of course, it’s not surprising that Ryan is the one trying to nail the Patriots’ coffin here. Eight seasons in the AFC East will do that to a man.
The Patriots are indeed longshots to make the playoffs this year — Football Outsiders has their playoff odds at 8.2 percent — but counting out Belichick for the long run is a bold proclamation. We’ll just have to wait and see how that works out for Ryan.
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