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Adam Schefter on D&C: Ravens have best shot to knock off Patriots

12.31.10 at 9:28 am ET
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ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Calllahan show Friday morning with guest hosts Bob Ryan and Bob Neumeier to talk about the Patriots and news from the NFL. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

Schefter said Bill Belichick is his choice as the NFL’s coach of the year. “You look at the job that he’s done, and you could argue ‘€¦ that the job he’s done this year is more impressive than the job he did in 2007, and as compelling or better than the job he did in 2001, when the Patriots first really launched themselves into the national conversation and became the franchise that we know today,” Schefter said.

Schefter was not one of the many media people who predicted the Jets would topple the Patriots and win the AFC East this season. He explained why he believed in the Patriots and wasn’t convinced by the Jets.

Said Schefter: “I never bought it, and I’ll tell you why I didn’t buy it. Because, again, it’s a quarterback league. And on my visit to Patriots training camp, the one thing that I sensed ‘€” and it’s easy to say it now but I’m telling I’ve been consistent on this all along ‘€”there was a real quiet confidence there in their young talent. They really thought they had a lot of really good, young football players.

“And the reason I stayed with the Patriots and didn’t go to the flavor of the month in New York was because the best quarterback, the most proven quarterback, the most consistent quarterback is Tom Brady. And it’s a quarterback league. And you have to go with the quarterback every time.

“The best and most proven and decorated coach in the division is Bill Belichick. Any team that has the coach and the quarterback, I don’t know how you go against them. And that was why I picked them to win the division at the beginning of the year.”

Asked which team has the best chance to knock off the Patriots in the playoffs, Schefter made it clear the choice is easy. “Baltimore,” he said. “They did it last year. They almost did it in the regular season this year. It’s the only team, to me, that I could see coming into Foxboro and beating the Patriots. ‘€¦ To me, there’s nothing about the Patriots that unnerves the Baltimore Ravens. Nothing.”

Added Schefter: “Maybe the Jets could give them a game on the right Sunday. The Jets beat them earlier in the year. But I think the Jets would be a little psyched out coming back to the place where they got trampled, 45-3, in the Boston Massacre.”

The Saints went into Atlanta and knocked off the NFC-leading Falcons on Monday night. Said Schefter: “More than anything it was a message: Beware of New Orleans in the postseason. ‘€¦ It’s the world champs, and they’re not done yet.”

Looking at coaches whose futures are considered in jeopardy, Schefter said he thinks that Tony Sparano (Dolphins), Tom Coughlin (Giants), Gary Kubiak (Texans) and Leslie Frazier (Vikings) will return to their teams next season, while Eric Mangini (Browns), Marvin Lewis (Bengals), Jeff Fisher (Titans) and John Fox (Panthers) are likely to depart.

Read More: adam schefter, Bill Belichick, Tom Brady,
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