Amid the tide of naysayers, I personally think the Pats are in a very good spot right now. - They are in the driver's seat in the AFC East. Any Pats win/Jets loss from here on out secures the division. - They have a very real chance of securing the #1 seed in the AFC yet again. They have a very winnable schedule remaining while the Texans are down to their 3rd string QB, the Steelers have a road trip to San Fran, and the Ravens finish in Cincy who nearly beat them in Baltimore. - They are blowing out bad teams. KC 34-3, Philly 38-20, Indy 31-24. Yes the Indy game was a blowout. 31-3 until @ 10 min left in the 4th is a blowout. The rest of the game was a lack of focus, which leads me to my next point. - This team has not peaked, and they are hungry. They haven't played a complete 60 minute game all year. They have another month to work on it, and who plays better in December than the Pats? The conditions for a superb playoff push are excellent. - They have lost 3 games by a combined total of 15 points. The stars aligned for the Bills, who the Pats were dominating by 21 at one point, and it took 4 Brady INTs for them to eke out a win in Buffalo. The Steelers played (peaked?) great football, dominated even, shut down the offense, passed all over the defense, and still only won by a TD. And it took yet another Eli miracle drive for the Giants to escape Foxboro with a win. The Pats have never been out of a game this season. The patchwork, much maligned Defense is tops in the AFC in forcing turnovers. This time last year the Pats were 10-2, had been blown out in Cleveland, hadn't swept the Jets, had given up MORE points defensively thru 12 games than this season....and probably peaked with the 45-3 win over the NYJ the following week. As great as last regular season was , there have been improvements this year. There have been regressions too I'm sure. Brady's INT totals for one. Woodhead's production, etc. Taken all together and this season isn't much different than last year at this point. Of course we are all hoping for different results in January, and at this point I feel better about the Pats chances. Part of that is also a wide open AFC, no one is dominant like the Packers (or the Patriots of 2010). It truly is about whoever gets hot in December this year and the Pats have just much chance as anyone else.