If a person watched just the first half of the New England-Denver matchup in Week 12, they probably left wondering why Tom Brady is not calling it quits. The Patriots were getting embarrassed on their own field, and the future Hall of Famer looked old. Something changed at halftime though, and Brady posted his typical fantasy football numbers on his way to a win. Now that they have knocked off Peyton Manning and Denver, can this team be considered an AFC Championship contender?
Right now, the Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs are the only two teams with better records in the AFC. One of those two teams will slide down in the playoff rankings, so New England could comfortably cruise into the playoffs as the #2 seed. Not bad for a franchise that has been lost at times this season. Many fantasy football owners had no idea who Brady would be throwing to at the start of the year, but everything seems to be falling into place now. It helps that the running game has picked up as well to keep the pressure off of him.
While any team can pull off an upset in the playoffs, three teams in particular could stand in New England’s way. The Cincinnati Bengals already beat the Patriots this season, and they made the offense look terrible. However, that was back at the start of October, when the team wasn’t full strength. The Colts pose a threat simply because Andrew Luck could get hot and outgun the aging Brady. If it becomes a fantasy football showdown, some might actually favor the youngster at this point.