FOXBORO -- The Patriots continue to lose games, but at least the team continues to improve its future draft pick in the process. With Sunday's 10-7 loss to the Giants, New England took another step toward landing a top-three pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.
At 2-9 on the season, the Patriots are currently slotted into the third overall pick in the upcoming draft. Sunday's loss gives them a 38 percent chance of jumping into the top two before season's end, according to ESPN Analytics, whereas a win over the Giants would have dropped those chances to just nine percent.
So maybe it's for the best that Mac Jones was benched for a fourth time this season and the offense failed to score more than 17 points for the ninth time in 11 games. The Patriots had a chance to send Sunday's game into overtime, but rookie kicker Chad Ryland missed a 35-yard game-tying field goal wide left in the final seconds.
New England briefly moved into the second overall pick following Sunday's loss, but the Arizona Cardinals slid into that spot after losing to the L.A. Rams later in the afternoon. Here's the current Top 10 draft order for the 2024 NFL Draft:
1. Carolina Panthers, 1-10 (pick goes to Chicago Bears)
2. Arizona Cardinals, 2-10
3. New England Patriots, 2-9
4. Chicago Bears, 3-8
5. Washington Commanders, 4-8
6. New York Giants, 4-8
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 4-7
8. New York Jets, 4-7
9. L.A. Chargers, 4-7
10. Tennessee Titans, 4-7
The Patriots will host the 4-7 Chargers in Week 13, followed by tough games against the Pittsburgh Steelers (on the road) and the Kansas City Chiefs -- both of whom are playoff teams. They'll visit the 6-5 Denver Broncos in Week 16 before closing the season against the 6-6 Bills in Buffalo and a home tilt against the 4-7 Jets.
Usually this time of the season is used to map out a road to the Super Bowl for the Patriots. But this year everyone in New England needs an abacus to keep track of all the team's losses, with fans hoping for a top pick in the draft come late April.
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