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2021 NFL Power Rankings: New England Patriots

Throughout the 2021 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the New England Patriots rank in terms of average, best and worst:

Below you will find a Week 10 roundup for the Patriots in our consensus 2021 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 12

Bold second-half prediction: QB Mac Jones will have 25 touchdown passes.

Jones has 10 TD passes through nine games, so he'll need to pick up the pace in the final eight games. That basically means he will need to average two per game to hit the mark. Is that a leap of faith? Perhaps, especially when considering how effective the running game has been close to the goal line. But Jones seems to have found a go-to target in Hunter Henry -- five TDs in last six games -- and the passing game should continue to grow as the season progresses. -- Mike Reiss

NFL.com -- Rank: 11

If Bill Belichick could face off against Sam Darnold every week, the Patriots would never lose a game. The coach continued his mastery over the former first-round pick, who threw three interceptions without a touchdown drive in New England's 24-6 win over the Panthers in Charlotte. It's the third straight win for the Pats, who are within a half-game of the Bills in a suddenly tight AFC East race. Mac Jones was better than he was Week 8 in Los Angeles, but the Pats won because of their opportunistic defense -- J.C. Jackson had two INTs, including the game-icing pick-six -- and a run game that rolled up 151 yards and a touchdown. A Week 10 showdown with the Browns could have huge playoff ramifications.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 12

Don't look now, but they've won three straight games to get back into the division race. Now they face a tough game at home against the Browns.

USA Today -- Rank: 9

Elsewhere in the AFC East, New England has averaged 147 rushing yards during its three-game winning streak while enjoying a +5 turnover differential. The Pats obviously want that divisional throne back.

The Athletic -- Rank: 11

Are they good? Increasingly, yes. Their first three wins -- twice against the Jets, and the Texans -- showed nothing, but back-to-back road wins at the Chargers and Panthers have been impressive. There's a logjam of 5-4 teams (Patriots, Chiefs, Browns, Bengals and Broncos) battling for the final AFC wild card. New England would win the tiebreaker right now. Beat Cleveland at home on Sunday and there will be a lot written about the Patriots' four-game win streak and return to success, with a rookie quarterback no less.

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