We came into November to face 5 teams in playoff contention in consecutive weeks. We discussed our projected final record here before November started. Some put on the homer hats and predicted 13-3 or 12-4. Some doom and gloomers predicted 8-8 or 9-7. Most of us predicted 10-6 or 11-5 and a possible playoff berth. And then, anything would be possible (as in 2001). ================================== In November, we went 2-3 against the colts, bills, jets, fins and steelers. Add the earlier 2-1 against the fins, jets and broncos. We are 4-4 against the real teams that we have played. Should we have expected more? Against the teams that we should definitely beat, we have been 3-1 so, losing only to the chargers. We are 0-3 against last years division winners. ==================================== BOTTOM LINE We are not a top echelon team this year without Brady. We would be such a team with Brady. For me, it really is that simple. ==================================== IS IT STILL REASONABLE TO CONSIDER 11-5 and 10-6? Certainly! We SHOULD beat the raiders and hawks given what is at stake for us, and given how bad they are. We would then be 9-5 looking at playoff possibilities more clearly, and more seriously. We will then face the cards and the bills. If we win both, we will likely be in the playoffs at 11-5, or be one of the only teams to miss at 11-5 in many years. At 10-6, we are likely to be out, but there are unlikely wild card scenarios where we are in. The team has given us a very good year. I want the Super Bowl. We all do. HOWEVER, right now, I want to us pass the gut-check and win the next two very winnable games. We were in this situation against Miami. We passed the test. We'll see where we are in two weeks.