Given all that’s transpired, having lost two of their most indispensable players in Julian Edelman and Dont’a Hightower to season-ending injuries, the New England Patriots can’t have too much to complain about at the midpoint of the season.

At 6-2, they’re pretty much on schedule, sitting in good position atop the AFC, tied with the Chiefs and Steelers for the best record in the conference. They also have a little breathing room in the division, thanks to the Jets bullying the not-ready-for-prime-time Bills. The Pats have two games to play against both the Bills (5-3) and Dolphins (4-4).

So as they get set to embark on the second half, we thought we’d focus on five obstacles they must overcome in order to get back to defend their Super Bowl title:

1. The killer injury: The season-enders have to stop. Two is enough. Edelman and Hightower were in the top-five list of players the Pats could least afford to lose. They just can’t lose any other key players because right now, there’s no margin for error.

It almost goes without saying there’s an even greater emphasis on protecting Tom Brady now, and keeping him healthy, especially without Jimmy Garoppolo as the safety net. All the eggs are in the Brady basket. But even when Jimmy G was on the roster, this team isn’t as stacked as we thought at the outset. Some of the offseason moves have yet to pay off. Add in the injury losses, and the health of Brady becomes that much more important. So the offensive line, which has done a better job of late, must continue in that mode.

2. Red zone failure: The Patriots can’t be settling for field goals over touchdowns when they get inside the opponents’ 20-yard line in December and January. They need to remedy that situation. Before leaving for the break, the offense held a meeting and specifically discussed the red zone issues. The players and coaches came away with a positive take and believe they’ll improve. “We have a strong belief that we can make something that hasn’t been necessarily a strength of ours into a strength in the second half of the season through a lot of hard work,” offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels said last week. “Our guys are committed to it.”

The Patriots are ranked 18th in the league in red-zone touchdown percentage, having converted just 50 percent of their opportunities into touchdowns. That’s not a very Patriot-like statistic, especially with Brady and Rob Gronkowski healthy and on the field.

3. The heavy road toll: The Pats start the second half of the season with 5 of 6 games on the road. They begin in Denver with a prime-time meeting with the Broncos, then play Oakland in Mexico City the following week.

The plan is for them to stay in Colorado, training there in preparation for the altitude in Mexico. Defensive captain Devin McCourty believes that time away can be a useful bonding experience. That’s what happened with the 2014 team when it spent a week in San Diego prior to playing the Chargers after playing the Packers in Green Bay.

“It’s often a good time for teammates and us as a team to just bond,” said McCourty. “It kind of turns back into college being in the dorm rooms and football practice and straight to hanging out with each other in the dorms. The only plus is we don’t have to go to class.”

They’ll return home Thanksgiving week, playing the Dolphins at home that Sunday, before traveling to Buffalo, Miami and Pittsburgh. Getting through that block of games will be key.

4. The Stephon Gilmore question: The $65 million man has missed the last three games due to a concussion. Whenever he returns to the lineup, the Patriots need to get more from their investment. While he was singled out as the poster boy for many of the big plays that killed the team in the early going, it would be more helpful if he was the catalyst for the defense completing its turnaround, especially late season. Gilmore did have his best game against Tampa, which is the last time he played. He was admirable in marking Mike Evans. But he just can’t be a one-trick pony. He can’t just take on guys one-on-one, which was pretty much how it was simplified for him vs. the Bucs. He must also be able to adapt to the Patriots’ zone schemes going forward.

5. Path to the top seed: The Patriots have already lost to the Chiefs, and have a date with the Steelers down the road at Heinz Field. Right now, those two teams appear to be their main competitors for the AFC’s top seed. Their final eight games are all within the conference, so they’re doubly important. Five of those are on the road.

“We know what the schedule is,” wide receiver Danny Amendola said. “We know what we’re getting into . . . (but) it’s one week at a time, focus all our energy on the task at hand.”

Of course, the way Bill Belichick typically works it, he always seems to have his team playing its best down the stretch, and fighting to gain home field and that top seed. His players certainly buy into that.

“I don’t think we’ve played our best football yet. I’d like to think it’s ahead of us,” Amendola said. “We’re all working really hard to play our best football, and to prepare to play our best football.”

We’ll see how it shakes out.