Why Nick Wright Refuses To Consider Patriots ‘Great’ Despite 6-0 Record

The New England Patriots are undefeated, improving their record to 6-0 with a 35-14 win over the New York Giants on Thursday night at Gillette Stadium.
They’re also the reigning champions, with three consecutive Super Bowl appearances under their belt, and boast arguably the NFL’s best defense in addition to the greatest coach-quarterback tandem in league history.

Yet Nick Wright isn’t ready to slap the “great” label on this version of the Patriots, whose offense has sputtered at times amid New England’s otherwise dominant start to the 2019 campaign against lackluster competition.

"The Patriots are one of the best defensive teams through 6 weeks the league has ever had. The defense and special teams has scored 5 TDs. The defense has allowed 3 TDs. This is a special defense … but I don't think this is a great football team." — @getnickwright pic.twitter.com/Cl2gLYnsvp
— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) October 11, 2019

“This is a great, great defense. The defense and special teams have scored five touchdowns. The defense has allowed three touchdowns. That’s how good this defense is,” Wright explained Friday on FS1’s “First Things First.” “Is this a great team? They didn’t look to me like a great team (Thursday night). They didn’t look like a great offense (Thursday night). They looked like a team that not only was taking advantage of the schedule, but in the schedule this team being depleted due to injuries. I don’t think you could watch (Thursday night’s) game, and more injuries rack up for the Patriots on the offensive side, and feel great about where their offense is, even though you win the game and you see they have 35 points.
“This is a special defense, the greatest coach of all time and a quarterback who gets more of a benefit of the doubt than any quarterback ever because he’s earned it. But I don’t think this is a great football team, because one major facet of their game — the offense — I don’t think is that good right now.”


"The 3 best defenses in football have one thing common: You do not trust their offense — Buffalo Bills, Chicago Bears and New England Patriots. Obviously, you trust Brady more than Trubisky and Josh Allen but the offense is the big question mark on their team." — @getnickwright pic.twitter.com/Lpnx69wSVp
— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) October 11, 2019

Is Wright being too harsh? Should we consider the Patriots a “great” team despite their offensive deficiencies, especially given how flawed so many teams across the NFL are nowadays?
Ultimately, it’s just semantics. And as long as they keep winning football games, the Patriots probably don’t care how they’re labeled. After all, Brady and Co. were criticized at times last season, yet New England stood tall when the dust settled, defeating the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII to mark the franchise’s third title in five years.

"Tom Brady has a tough job. The OL isn't very good & I don't know who he's throwing to. It's Julian Edelman & replacement-level players all along the skill positions. That has to be a concern for New England as they approach the varsity portion of their schedule." —@getnickwright pic.twitter.com/suzFQC6muN
— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) October 11, 2019

All told, the Patriots’ schedule will get more difficult later this season, at which point we should gain a better understanding of New England’s true identity.