Foxborough, MA– This week, the 2019 NFL schedule was announced and the New England Patriots made out pretty well. They always do, thanks to a fairly weak AFC East division, but this time, the Patriots' first half of the season is against teams that did not make the post-season in 2018 (with a BYE in week ten). Teams for the upcoming season are still in the making, but for now, here's a rank of the matchups from what I anticipate to be the hardest games all the way down to the supposed easiest.

  1. Kansas City Chiefs (Home, December 8) - The Chiefs gave the Patriots a run for their money in the AFC Championship Game, and I have to think that Patrick Mahomes is only going to continue to improve.
  2. Baltimore Ravens (Road, November 3) - A part of Sunday Night Football, the Ravens are an upstart franchise in the league. Yes, I still fear Lamar Jackson.
  3. Cleveland Browns (Home, October 27) - I never thought the Browns would rank this high, but they are stacked now. With Odell Beckham, Jr. on the roster, the Browns are a legitimate threat.
  4. Philadelphia Eagles (Road, November 17) - This stretch is clearly shaping up to be a tough one. Obviously, the Eagles are capable of giving New England trouble.
  5. Miami Dolphins (Road, September 15) - The Dolphins always give New England trouble in Miami, as well. Especially this early in the season when Bill Belichick is still experimenting with new players.
  6. Houston Texans (Road, December 1) - Another Sunday Night Football game will see the Patriots take on one of the league's top defenses.
  7. Dallas Cowboys (Home, November 24) - The Cowboys made a strong comeback in 2018 and they'll look to keep things going around Thanksgiving.
  8. Pittsburgh Steelers (Home, September 8) - The Steelers lost a lot of top players, but home openers are never cake walks.
  9. New York Giants (Home, October 10) - New York is not very good, but the Patriots will be on short rest for this game.
  10. Cincinnati Bengals (Road, December 15) - Road games this late in the season are tough.
  11. Buffalo Bills (Road, September 29) - And so are road games this early in the season.
  12. Washington Redskins (Road, October 6) - Washington doesn't even have a legitimate quarterback option right now, so they are not a formidable threat to any team.
  13. Miami Dolphins (Home, December 29) - Depending on potential seeding options, the season finale could be a hard fought battle.
  14. New York Jets (Road, October 21) - There's a path for the Jets to be good this season, but I really don't see it panning out.
  15. New York Jets (Home, September 22) - The Patriots have had the Jets' number for a long time. Don't expect it to change.
  16. Buffalo Bills (Home, December 21 or 22) - This is the closest I can come to making a guarantee. New England should have no trouble winning this one.

It should be an amazing season for New England!