ICYMI: The New England Patriots have won six Supers Bowls since 2001 and played in an additional three just for fun on top of that! Elementary school math will tell us that is a grand total of nine Super Bowl appearances since 2001.
With the exception of the 2002 and '08, the Pats have been a playoff team every year since their first Super Bowl win. In the previously mentioned years they finished tied for 1st in the AFC East (9-7 in '02 and 11-5 in '08) but missed the playoffs due to tiebreakers; so it's not exactly like the Pats had a lot of lean years during the Brady-Belichick era.
While making the playoffs doesn't necessarily mean you're a good team (ex. 2004 Rams, 2010 Seahawks, 2014 Panthers and whoever wins the NFC East most seasons) in the most rudimentary of terms....the Patriots have been a good team for almost 20 straight years.
Because of that, the Pats haven't spent too much time as underdogs. It makes sense. When you win 12 games a year, you're probably going to be favored a lot (if not always). I'm sure you'd believe me if I told you University of Alabama Football has only been an underdog once since 2009. I don't want to sound like Colin Cowherd, but when you're consistently among the best in your field, you're going to be expected to perform well. Now that Tom Brady is in Tampa and Cam Newton has COVID, tonight's Patriots game against the Chiefs will be just the 3rd time since 2002 where they're are at least a 7-point dog.
What's even crazier is that tonight's fake-MNF game is the first time since SUPER BOWL XXXVI on February 3rd, 2002 (I'll gladly tell the readers I was in FOURTH GRADE) that the Patriots are a double-digit underdog. For reference, in their final year under that name, the 2019 Washington Redskins were a double-digit underdog EIGHT times.
What's even crazier than that is Little Casaer's New $3.49 Stuffed Crazy Bread!!!
Just kidding, although that bread is super crazy; cheese INSIDE breadsticks, WITH Mariana sauce? Next you're gonna tell me you can get half one topping, half a different topping too.
What is truly insane, absurd, bizarre, ridiculous and preposterous is Bill Belichick's record as the Patriots Head Coach in games where they're underdogs by 10 points or more.
That's right! Bill Belichick is UNDEFEATED while coaching the Patriots as a 10+ point dog with an astounding 4-0 record in such games. While 4-0 is 4-0, you may want to double check that stat before placing any bets on the Pats tonight (and not just because SB XXVI is a typo).
Did you spot it?
All of those games were played during the 2001 season. You know? Back when TRL was appointment TV.
S/o anybody who remembers this "band".
While saying "Bill Belichick has never lost a game as Patriots Head Coach as a double digit underdog" is accurate, so is "Winston Churchill never used an iPhone" or "Martin Luther King, Jr didn't know how to send an email". Circumstance matters.
This is very similar to the whole notion that the Patriots couldn't win a road playoff game going into the 2018 AFC Championship Game because they hadn't won on the road since 2006. Sports media made it seem like the Patriots were the Atlanta Braves in the playoffs. It'd be one thing if they were 0-6 on the road, like how Chiefs were in the playoffs at home from 1995-2017, but the Patriots played two whole road playoff games from 2007-2017 (2013 & '15 AFCCG; both in Denver).
In closing, numbers lie all the fucking time and if you take this stat as anything other than "holy shit the 2001 run really was miraculous" than I suggest you take off your Patriot blinders. While I do believe in coach Belichick, I don't believe in Brian Hoyer. Sure, I might sprinkle Pats ML, but that's only because the Too Many Legs Teaser has literally never lost.