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2022 NFL Power Rankings: New England Patriots

Throughout the 2022 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a Week 18 roundup for the New England Patriots in our consensus 2022 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 14

Regular season in five words or fewer: Not coming through in clutch

The Patriots have a chance to erase this narrative with a season-ending win on the road against the Bills on Sunday, but their penchant for malfunctioning in critical situations -- such as lateraling the game away on the final play against the Raiders -- has been a dominant storyline of the season.

NFL.com -- Rank: 17

Nobody really needs to see this particular Patriots team in the playoffs, but they might just get there to spite us. Led once again by a wildly opportunistic defense, the Pats remain in the playoff race after a 23-21 win over the Dolphins in Foxborough. Breakout safety Kyle Dugger had the biggest play of the game, a third-quarter pick-six that put New England ahead for good against its struggling AFC East rival. It was Dugger's third touchdown of the season and the Pats' seventh defensive score of the year. It's not unfair to surmise that this would be an 11- or 12-loss Patriots team if not for the impeccably timed heroics of the non-Mac Jones side of the ball.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 18

They beat the Bills this week and they are in the playoffs. That won't be easy on the road.

USA Today -- Rank: 14

Another team potentially impacted by Buffalo's situation, as it stands now, a New England win in Western New York on Sunday sends Pats to postseason.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 14

You'd think, based on the reactions to the Patriots' season, they're a 3-13 team in line for the first pick of the draft. In reality, they're a Week 18 win (or a lot of losses around the AFC) from being in the playoffs. The bar is so high for the Patriots that being a win from a playoff berth has been mostly viewed as a disastrous season.

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