BOSTON (CBS) – Former Patriots linebacker Rosevelt Colvin emphasized to Ryan Johnston and Mike Flynn just how important it is for the Patriots to secure a first-round bye in the playoffs by beating the Bills at home this weekend.
A loss could send them all the way to the fourth seed, which would give them a playoff matchup with the Kansas City Chiefs – a team Colvin believes would give the Patriots fits based on their running game and offensive playmakers.
The Bills come into Foxboro with seemingly nothing to play for. Buffalo has amassed a 6-9 record under first-year coach Doug Marrone and rookie quarterback EJ Manuel – good for last place in the AFC East.
Even though the Bills aren’t playing for a postseason berth, Colvin stressed that the Pats can’t take them lightly, or else they’ll be playing on Wildcard Weekend instead of having a first-round bye.
“With the Patriots deficiencies, especially on defense, the Bills present a challenge because they can move the ball offensively – although they haven’t shown it a lot. And on defense they still have one of the premiere pass rushers in Mario Williams.”
“The Patriots still have to come to play a full game for sixty minutes on Sunday,” said Colvin.
Looking ahead to the playoffs, Colvin diagnosed which teams have the best shot of knocking out the Patriots. He started with the Kansas City Chiefs.
With quarterback Alex Smith under center, the Chiefs hardly ever turn the ball over – combine that with a game-changing running back in Jamaal Charles and that’s a bad matchup for the Patriots.
“I think there’s only one team in the AFC where the Patriots would be like ‘Man, this isn’t a team we should’ve drawn’ – and that’s the Kansas City Chiefs.”
On Denver, Colvin doesn’t think the injury to linebacker Von Miller will hurt their chances all that much. The Broncos started the year 6-0 without him and had a bad defense in his absence, and when he returned they were still just as bad.
“The difference in Denver is #18,” said Colvin referring to Peyton Manning.
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Heading into the final week of the NFL season, only one team knows what seed they’ll have in the AFC playoffs and that’s the Chiefs with the 5 seed.
While the postseason seedings are still an unknown, one thing that’s for sure is that the Patriots can’t fall asleep at the wheel on Sunday against Buffalo.
“I think the opportunity is still there for the Patriots to reach the Super Bowl, but they have to take the first step this weekend and get that bye week – that is huge. It’ll give your team some rest and another opportunity to game plan,” said Colvin.