After a somewhat disastrous start to the New England Patriots’ season, there are many questions as to whether it is time to panic about the team’s abilities.

Last week, the Pats made Kansas City quarterback Alex Smith look like the great Dan Marino.

Smith threw four touchdowns and more than 300 yards. The Patriots’ defense looked confused and out of place.

This is not typical for a Bill Belichick team.

It seems ever since the beginning of the “Brady-Belichick era,” the season hasn’t ever gotten off to a hot start.

It is somewhat of a tradition to freak out about the Patriots within the first few weeks of the National Football League (NFL) season.

The season can go in two directions for the defending champs.

The first, after last weeks resounding and eye-opening loss, could be the Patriots going on a tear and likely seeing them deep in the playoffs or in the Super Bowl.

The other option is another team taking advantage of their chance.

It could be striking time for the Bills, Jets and Dolphins.

The Patriots are not likely to let this happen.

After everything they have been through, such as the suspension of last year, deflategate, spygate, you name it, the Patriots have responded to these setbacks with profound resilience.

Even without the great Tom Brady, in the first four games of the 2016 season, they still went 3-1.

In one of the games, they had to use their third string quarterback Jacoby Brissett and they still won.

This Sunday, the Patriots will face Drew Brees, one of the greatest quarterbacks of his era.

There is much work for them to do if they want to stop the Saints’ offense.

Last week, the Patriots gave up 378 yards to the Chiefs.

Facing offensive machines Drew Brees and Adrian Peterson will be a tough match for a Patriots defensive squad. Recently, the Pats have looked outmatched and outplayed by mediocre offense.

Matt Patricia will have to go back to the chalkboard and develop another scheme to stop the Saints from bringing another week of disappointment to New England fans.

This week will be a difficult match, but ultimately, the Patriots will come out on top.

Year after year, article after article, football minds alike have been trying to predict the end to an empire.

Some worries the Pats have are the loss to another pass receiver.

After already losing one of their best guys, Julian Edelman, Danny Amendola went down with a concussion, leaving Gronk and Brandin Cooks to take the load of the passes for TB12 (Tom Brady).

Tom Brady’s total Quarterback Passer Rating (QBR) was below average at 70. Brady is likely to have bad games here and there, but it is not something to worry about, unless his performance stays the same.

In his 40th year of life, it is often found that quarterbacks deteriorate at this point. This does not seem to apply to Brady, for he still put up above average numbers.

In the last matchup between the Patriots and Saints, it was considered a classic.

The Patriots scored a game-winning touchdown with just four seconds remaining on the clock.

The game this Sunday is going to be fun, no matter the outcome. Will the Patriots overcome the rough start, or is it time to get nervous about the team as a whole?

Paul Bean can be contacted at

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