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In the first few sentences you say that you will be "extremely disappointed" if the Pats don't win the superbowl. In the last you point out how silly that really is. I really don't understand why your expectations are set so high. There are lots of good quarterbacks, coaches and teams in this league. All of them have relatively equal shots of getting to and winning the superbowl, which means that individually, none have great odds to do so. The Pats, like all teams, have their flaws. The Pats, like all teams, get injuries to key players. The Pats, like all teams, fail to execute at times. The Pats, like all teams, sometimes just don't have the ball bounce their way. It's happens.
We'll all be disappointed if the Pats don't win the Super Bowl. That's natural. I think this is the best Pats' team since 2007, possibly better, so I will be crushed. But I also realize that being the best team doesn't guarantee anything, and I won't go flaming at the Pats for being unable to win the big one if they don't.
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts. "OVER Loading at ANY position can create a Fatal Advantage. THAT is what interests ME. Attacking With Concentrated Force. THAT is what WINS. In the words ~ more or less ~ of General Patton: 'I'm fighting a WAR, here. Let the B*****ES worry about their FLANKS.' " - Off the Grid
"The key to any successful organization is to anticipate things, not react to them." - Michael Lombardi
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I think that what has been lost in the everyday discussions of this team is that it is and has been a rebuilding project for the past 4-5 years. Since the 2007 season Belichick has had to rebuild most of this team around its core pieces, Brady, Wilfork, Mankins, and Welker. The fact that he has actually been able to accomplish this while staying atop the division and in the running for Super Bowl's is borderline unbelievable and unfortunately kept Patriot fans in the mindset that the only thing that mattered was winning one, when the simple fact that they got there during the rebuilding process was an accomplishment in and of itself. Last year's team is a great example because it was in no way the best team in the NFL but still got within seconds of winning the Super Bowl. Had they won last season it would have been much like 2001, although obviously not an exact parallel as that team came from nowhere whereas last year's came out of a pack of teams with a chance. Imo what makes it like the 2001 team is that it marked the beginning of a run of excellence, and this year's team is showing that it has most or all of the components for them to be an excellent team that is the favorite to win it all for the next few seasons. There are still a couple of needs that Belichick will have to address going forward, such as a deep threat WR, but overall the units are in great shape and will be intact in coming seasons. Winning a Super Bowl is brutally difficult to do, which is why some teams have never done it and others have gone 30-40 years without a shot (JETS), but this team is young, really good, and set to dominate for the next few years, provided they make the right decisions on their free agents, and that will give them a great shot at closing out the Brady era with more rings. Personally I am going to enjoy this run no matter what happens. I will love it if they get another ring, or more, but I am not going to consider it a failure if they come close but fall short because it is a really difficult goal to reach and requires some good fortune as well as a great team.
If they win another ring after this rebuilding I believe it will mark the first time a coach/GM has completely rebuilt a team around 1 player and won it all again. Imo people should enjoy this as much as they can because we won't likely enjoy a run of success like this ever again, hopefully this forum can reflect that experience more than the neverending teeth gnashing and negativity, but i also realize that is too much to expect.
Yes it is. And all those trolls and bashers took away the fun for a lot of people on the board because they mercilessly trashed the team.
You don't have to read the thread if it's not fun for you. I gave up reading the game day threads ages ago because all of the trolls and bashers. I got tired of every dropped pass being commented on with 3 "Welker sucks" or "thank god we didn't give him a long term deal", or every completed pass with a comment like "McCourty can't cover my Grandma". It wears you down. THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE FUN PEOPLE!!!!!! LET'S CUT THEM SOME SLACK!
So if you don't like it you might consider:
1. Don't keep coming back to a thread that irritates you.
2. Put people that irritate you on ignore.
3. Take a mental health break from the board.
I've had to do all of those at times this season because of the effect of guys like you. Thanks for making the board a fun experience for me.
Its sports, men drink and talk trash about any and everything. I don't see how its a problem when that is how sports fans act worldwide.
This outrage is ridiculous, who cares if someone insults McCourty after 5 beers and him sucking?
Interesting thread. Dealing with the highs and lows of trying to climb the mountain every season is not easy for any of us, and harder psychologically for some than others, for a variety of reasons. Makes it all the more fun.
From my name, you can tell that I like and play poker, and generally enjoy all games. I'll share my mental model for how I approach the wild fluctuations of football games, the season and the playoffs, using my background in poker, because I believe it's not only correct, but a healthy mental approach. I'm sure many of you do something similar.
First point is that you can divide games or competitions into 3 categories: all skill, combination of skill/luck, and all luck. For example, chess is 100% skill--the higher rated player should beat the weaker player every time in every single game--there is no luck involved, even in the short term. Poker is a great example of a game involving a combination of skill and luck. In the long run, the better player will always win more or beat the lesser player, but because of the obvious luck factor involved in the short term fall of the cards, the weaker player can certainly beat experts at individual hands, sessions, etc. Games of pure luck like craps and roulette involve no skill--all players do the same over time.
Second point is that football is pretty clearly a game of mixed skill/luck. The skill part is the talent level, coaching, planning, execution, etc. The luck part is tipped balls, the roll of fumbles, weird plays, referee calls, even random matchups. Lots of pundits, experts, and fans underestimate the short terms luck factor, especially in a league of parity where skill factors are close. They may know better, but they act like the superior team should win every time.
So I personally mentally employ more of a probabilistic model, as follows. If the PATS are playing another comparably skilled team, I think their going-in chance of winning the game is 50-60%, and not any higher. The range there is due to slight skill differences, home field, and that's about it. For the next tier of teams in the middle, maybe the range is 60-70% chance of victory. For the worst teams, i estimate the chance of the better PATS team winning at 70-80%.
I truly believe these percentages to be true in the short term and the long terms. When you really factor in the luck part, it really helps me keep the fluctuations in randomness in great perspective. Some quick examples:
- Beating the Texans 42-14, or the Broncos earlier. I think they're comparably skilled teams. Doesn't change my belief that if we played them 10 times, we'd be expected to win 5-6 of those, and not more. So you might say that in blowing out one of these great teams, we got "lucky" in very real sense. We've all seen in the momentum of short-term football that a little bit of skill combined with some luck (Hernandez saving the Ridley fumble, or the Sanchez butt fumble) can suddenly lead to an unstoppable blowout. But hard as it is, I try not to delude myself that's it's not due to superior skill. When BB says "it was just our night" or "it wasn't their night" on these blowouts, he's telling the truth about the luck factor.
- Just edging out a win by 1-3 points. This is pretty normal in the NFL for closely matched teams. The jaded expression "we made one or two more plays than they did" or vice versa is completely valid. To me, it normally means the luck factor was pretty even in the game, and it came down to a small skill difference--one missed third down, one made kick, etc.
- Then there's the example like the PATS losing to the Arizona Cardinals at Gillette earlier this season. Hurts like hell, since we know now that this is one of those 70-80% shots of victory for the PATS vs what proved to be a bottom tier team. But in games with a luck factor it still means the inferior team has a 20-30% chance of winning. Not exactly as remote as winning the lottery. And if you think of that game, weird "unlucky" plays like a blocked punt occurred that ultimately spelled the difference.
You can apply this skill/luck model to a lot of things to keep a healthy perspective. In this mindset, going 18-0 in 2007 was extraordinarily "lucky". Even if the PATS skill was so superior that year that they had an 80% chance of winning every game (very generous), the chance of winning 18 in a row is 1.8%. And although it is truly painful, in this model no super bowl loss or win against obviously another good team, where the chance of victory is almost certainly in the 50-60% zone, can ever be too much of an upset. It doesn't mean that the winner didn't get lucky with fumbles or strange calls to win that particular game, and it doesn't mean that there wasn't poor execution on certain plays, but when the experts proclaim a major upset in the playoffs because the vastly inferior team beat the far more talented one, their premise is just flat wrong.
Anyway, that system works for me. I am comfortable knowing that the only thing the PATS can control is their skill, effort, prep and trajectory of growth and improvement, and I accept that those skill factors get them to just over 50% against another good team, and somewhat higher against worse teams, and the rest is some form of randomness and luck.
You started off real well and then went down-hill the rest of the way.
You know one of the smartest things anyone ever told me is that in any sentence you speak; if you use the words ALWAYS or NEVER you are already WRONG. ('not being happy unless' is tantamount / OP seems to wants to tar some folks that way).
The MAIN POINT of this thread and my MAIN OBJECTION to it; is that it seems to be the epitome of the LORD's PROPRIETY PATROL group. You know the self-appointed board-nazi type who want to tell everyone else not only how they can express themselves, but even how to think.
I seriously doubt that any REAL POSTER (rather then a JESTER POSER) posts constant negativity and is always a Debbie DOWNER. Let me clue you all in on something: Every poster is physically capable of writing a negative post in ONE THREAD; and post a laudatory one IN ANOTHER, within 30 seconds.
(putting on my rose-colored memory glasses).....When I first joined this board back in 2000 (coming over from ESPN pages because they were full of a bunch of back-biting egomaniacs); this was like coming to a FAMILY FORUM page. We even had a crazy uncle (nem). And despite disagreements folks and the mods kept things within certain boundaries, newbies felt welcome joining, the technical discussion level was high in threads, but there was room for all types of posts and threads, even a rant if you had a bad day.
Now the number of times I see posters (often guys with join dates post 2007 or later who have higher post counts than I because they post a lot) who call out for the mods to DELETE THIS THREAD or to tell someone else they CAN'T EXPRESS AN OPINION seems to be RISING DRAMATICALLY HERE.
So, if someone wants to come here and feel like he is sitting down at the corner pub on a barstool with his 2 best friends and moan a little about the pats safety inadequacies in one minute (one thread); and talk about Stallworths beautiful catch and run in the next minute (another thread/post); LET's CUT THEM SOME SLACK.
THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE FUN PEOPLE!!!!!!!
Nobody's telling anybody not to express their opinion. We're just hoping that people might try to express their opinions without all the hyperbolic and misdirected fury.
You can express all the disappointment and frustration in the world without taking it as a personal affront and/or scapegoating someone.
I'd love to come on here and talk about the Patriots' perennial problems at safety. It'd be nice to be able to do so in a thread where people aren't casting personal insults at the relevant players and coaches.
Some people seem so fixated on winning the superbowl that they simply can't enjoy the season.
I think it's analagous to a good book or movie. You can really enjoy the ride, the ups and downs, etc. Think, this is a really good book. You can't wait to get back to it. But if the ending sucks, that affects your opinion of it.
"So I'm going to throw myself against the wall...
'Cause I'd rather feel bad than not feel anything at all."