The New England Patriots are having their worst season in a long time, but on a brighter note, they're inching closer to getting the No. 1 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.
The Patriots lost their third straight game Sunday with a 21-17 defeat to the Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium. The Week 6 loss drops New England to 1-5 for the first time since 1995.
The Carolina Panthers are the only winless team in the league at 0-6, which puts them in pole position for the No. 1 overall pick in next year's draft. However, they owe their pick to the Chicago Bears as a result of the trade last April where the Panthers moved up to select Alabama quarterback Bryce Young with the top pick.
Stay in the game with the latest updates on your beloved Boston sports teams! Sign up here for our All Access Daily newsletter.
The Patriots are one of five one-win teams, so there's plenty of competition for the top five picks. However, of the six teams with zero wins or one win, the Patriots and Giants are tied for the toughest remaining schedule. Their remaining opponents have a .565 win percentage.
More Patriots coverage
The schedule is about to get even tougher for the Patriots. Next up is a home matchup versus the Buffalo Bills, who have beaten the Patriots five straight times. After that game, the Patriots travel to Miami to play the first-place Dolphins. The Dolphins beat the Patriots 24-17 in Week 2 at Gillette Stadium.
So there's a real possibility that New England is 1-7 entering its Week 9 matchup against the Washington Commanders.
The good news for the Patriots is the 2024 quarterback draft class is projected to be quite strong. USC's Caleb Williams and North Carolina's Drake Maye are the No. 1 and No. 2 rated prospects, respectively. Washington's Michael Penix Jr., Oregon's Bo Nix and Colorado's Shedeur Sanders could be first-round picks, too. Put simply, this is a good year to be a bad team because a franchise-altering QB could potentially be found in the next draft.
Here's the top 10 of the draft order entering "Sunday Night Football" on NBC. This post will be updated again after the remaining Week 6 games.
1. Carolina Panthers, 0-6 (pick owned by CHI)
2. Chicago Bears, 1-5
3. Denver Broncos, 1-5
4. Arizona Cardinals, 1-5
5. New York Giants, 1-5
6. New England Patriots, 1-5
7. Minnesota Vikings, 2-4
8. Tennessee Titans, 2-4
9. Green Bay Packers, 2-3
10. New Orleans Saints, 3-3