Will the 2022 Patriots Make the Playoffs? John Harbaugh Thinks So

Ravens' Harbaugh makes bold statement about Patriots' 2022 outlook originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

Morale is quite low in New England right now.

The Patriots are 1-2 after committing four second-half turnovers in a 36-27 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday. They also lost starting quarterback Mac Jones to a reported high ankle sprain, and with backup Brian Hoyer likely to start on the road against the Green Bay Packers in Week 4, its very possible New England will be 1-3 after four games.

But while Patriots fans wonder if this team will finish above .500, Ravens coach John Harbaugh was much more bullish on Bill Belichick's club after Sunday's game.

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"Good football team. This team will be there at the end of the year in the playoffs, you watch," Harbaugh told reporters, via Pro Football Focus' Doug Kyed.

The Patriots have only missed the playoffs twice in Harbaugh's 14 years with Baltimore, so maybe he's just playing the odds by predicting that Belichick will get his team pointed in the right direction. There's some reason for Patriots optimism after Sunday's game, too: New England led 20-14 in the third quarter and had a very good chance to win if it cut down on the turnovers. The offense racked up 447 total yards, while the defense did an admirable job containing Lamar Jackson despite the superstar quarterback's gaudy stat line.

That said, the odds aren't in the Patriots' favor. Sportsbooks currently have New England at -500 to miss the playoffs and +330 to make the playoffs, and if Jones misses more than one game, those odds should become even more skewed. The 2-1 Buffalo Bills and 3-0 Miami Dolphins will be very tough to catch in the AFC East, and the Patriots still have to play their divisional foes a combined three more times.

So at the moment, Harbaugh's "confidence" in the Patriots seems misplaced. But he's seen Belichick prove the doubters wrong before, and he's expecting New England to be in the playoff picture come January.

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