Patriots fans may have had some jealousy Sunday as they watched the Rams defeat the Bengals in Super Bowl LVI.
Boston.com recently asked readers when the Patriots will be back in the Super Bowl, and most readers said they would be back in the big game soon.
“Mac Jones is the new GOAT! With his rookie season over he’s learned what it’s like to be in the NFL and will take that knowledge to apply to his sophomore season,” Noelle M. from Hanson, who thought the Patriots are Super Bowl bound next season, said.
Nineteen percent of readers polled said that the Pats will make their Super Bowl return next season.
“Belichick building an elite defense and Jones developing into an elite QB,” are why Ron K. from South Burlington, VT said that the Pats will be in the big game next year. “The Dynasty returning to the elite teams scares the hell out of other contenders.”
Zack from Quincy was hopeful for a Pats Super Bowl run next year.
“Mac [Jones] will come back strong and now that he has a year under him he’s going to be a lot more dangerous,” he said. “If not next season, then in another year or so.”
Most readers said they will give Belichick, Jones and rest of the team a little more time before they’re ready to play for another New England Super Bowl parade.
“One more year to rebuild,” Cody M. from Shelbyville said. “Gotta make New England irresistible for hard work and talent. It happened once, it can happen again.”
The development of Jones is also something that readers thought may slow the Patriots’ return to the Super Bowl a few seasons until around 2024, which was when 34 percent of respondents said the Pat’s would play in the Super Bowl again.
“I feel that Mac Jones will have a few setbacks with whoever the new OC will be in 2022,” John L. from Manchester, NH said. “He’ll need some time to adjust to a new offense.”
Steve from Franklin also said that All-Rookie Team quarterback Jones will need to develop further to lead New England to a Super Bowl.
“[The Patriots] need another 2 years to get younger/faster on offense on defense and for Mac to gain experience,” Steve from Franklin said.
Scott from Waltham said the Patriots making the Super Bowl in 2024 will just be a part of the Patriots’ plan.
“When Bill Belichick arrived in 2000 he had a four-year plan to contend for a Super Bowl. Happily, Tom Brady helped accelerate that by two years,” Scott said. “But for this rebuild, I suspect the full four years will be needed. And 2024 will be year 4 of this build-up.”
Other readers said it could be a little longer before the Patriots play in another Super Bowl.
Forty seven percent of readers said that 2025 and beyond would be when the Patriots make it to the Super Bowl.
Some readers noted that the AFC has gotten stronger in the past few seasons and that the new powerhouses in the conference could keep the Pats out of a Super Bowl for longer than fans would hope for.
“AFC is getting a lot stronger,” Bruce from Newburyport said. “Pats can no longer walk into the playoffs with an AFC East title with ease.”
The Bills’ rout of the Patriots in the AFC wild card game was another indication that a run to the Super Bowl may be further away than fan’s may think.
“It could be a while before the Pats are back in the Super Bowl,” John from Wilbraham said. “They have to first win the division, and that starts with beating Josh Allen and the Bills.”
John didn’t think a Patriots Super Bowl appearance would happen until 2026.
Other readers thought fans may have to wait until the end of the decade.
One unnamed reader said that it may not be until past the year 2030 until the Patriots make a Super Bowl run.
“The Patriots are substantially less talented than the leading NFL teams such as the Buffalo Bills, the Chiefs and the Rams,” they said.