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Patriots face three opponents coming off their bye weeks

The 2021 NFL schedule did the Patriots no favors.

New England is the only team in the NFL that has to face three opponents coming off a bye week, and on net the Patriots will have 15 fewer rest days than their opponents, according to Seth Walder of ESPN.

The Patriots also get their own bye week late in the season; New England is one of four teams with a Week 14 bye. Teams usually prefer to have their bye weeks closer to the middle of the season.

Bill Belichick is unlikely to complain publicly about the Patriots’ schedule, as he always tells players to do their jobs, and their job is not to worry about the schedule. But there’s no doubt that the Patriots’ schedule gives them a real challenge.