I am highly encouraged by what Belichick did, by what it implies.
Fans including Draftniks like us, always are like the Generals preparing for the LAST War.
The one thing we know is that BB has been rebuilding the Defense over the last few years, and patching the Offense. Many fans says we need a pass rush. The Pats need a 3-4 DE... The Pats need a ROLB rush end... Or so we fans say.
One thing I did see, and that is frequently ignored, is that their Defense improved markedly from 23+ PPG to 17 PPG between the first half and the second half of the season. That is until injuries in the "deep" DL, unmanned them for the Playoffs.
Recall that they did not have Bodden and McGowen in the secondary, and Spikes at LB along with both Warrens, Deaderick, and Brace, at the end of the season. That is a lot of talent to re-add to the Defense.
But we do not see the practices and the guys who are coming on, but have not produced on the field yet. BB and his staff do, and they know what they have, and what is developing too, and about ready to blossom. BB knows, and we don't.
On the DL the Pats have, Vince Wilfork, Ty Warren, Ron Brace, Brandon Deaderick, Mo Pryor, G Warren? and Stroud? that adds up to 7 DL capable DLs and with a few more developing candidates, like Love too. How many do you really need, or can even carry?
I agree the team needed another DL at the end of the last season, as the Pats had a most unusual run of too many injuries by the playoffs there. But the adversity allowed them to test some youngsters and discover how good they could be. Obviously, they were satisfied, based on what they did in this draft.
Others have said they they need a DE--> OLB candidate or two. Historically BB has not selected them in the first round, but have signed them in FAs. Recently, he has invested 2s and 3s trying to develop his own. I still think they will select a couple candidates to develop in the 2nd and 3rd rounds, like they did with Crable and Cunningham. They picked up Ninkovitch after he groomed elsewhere and in his first year of starting along with rookie Cunningham, perhaps they feel, along with spoting player TBC, they have three acceptable players who will bloom with more playing time. They seldom had more than three in the Superbowl years.
We knew at some point, the Pats would have to start rebuilding the Offense. But we thought the Pats needed to "Finish" the Defense first. Their Draft indicates they think the Defense is "finished" already; and they were able to turn to the Offense. Consider how far they have come already in rebuilding the "older" Offense.
They have two young talented, gargantuan LOT tackles, with Volmer in the Pro bowl in his second season. they have two experienced vet starters in Light and and Kaczur; and a great young Guard, Mankins, and someone who played very well in Dan Connelly. Who knows how Wendell and Ohrnberger will develop at Center? Centers and interior linemen are frequently taken in the 2nd through 5th rounds. They will probably draft a RB or two, and sign a vet RB or two. Same for WR.
The Tight End position is young and already spectacular. The WRs are all relatively young, and the starters are accomplished. There are youngsters still developing. The starting RBs are both young, and proven, and more can be added. QBs make WRs, not the other way around.
People privately say Hoyer is impressive, and future HOF QB Brady is still in his prime. Although they could take another one like Greg McElroy who in a year or three, will surprise like Cassel did and Hoyer are doing, and Brady did a decade ago.
I am even more Encouraged. Even as BB surprises the conventional wisdom, the results are Super Bowl contention, year in and year out. :D:D:D
I don't think you can conclude anything yet based on only 1 round of the draft. There are 6 rounds to go. And rounds 2 and 3 will see the bulk of the Pats picks made who actually have a chance of contributing. The Solder pick makes a lot of sense given that Light is a free agent and we might not want to pay him the $$ to return or we may not want him to give the # of years he wants for job security since he is already 33. If Light gets a better offer from another team, I have little doubt he will bolt for greener pastures and a fatter paycheck. Thus the Pats HAD to be prepared for the loss of Matt Light.
The Pats reacted similarly when Wilfork's future was in doubt. They drafted Brace IN CASE they wouldn't be able to resign #75. Fortunately they managed to do so. Brace has shown limited flashes of what he can do but he's only a 2nd round pick. So expectations are different for him, he has the luxury of developing with Wilfork in the fold.
I think that Solder will have to contribute sooner rather than later. Hopefully he is made of similar stuff to Vollmer. Both are tall, long, athletic tackles who should be excellent in pass protection, a necessary area of strength for a team whose offense starts with and ends with the golden arm of Tom Brady.
Good start for BB in the draft...now grab another OL...an OLB...RB....and throw in a DL for good measure....
If a WR BB like happens to drop, fine...but FA hasn't even started and a FA signing or two surely will happen.....
Plenty of good players to be drafted today...hit big on 2 or 3 and Pats will be set...plus set up for next year's draft also.....
Someone mentioned Kettani at RB......he's a load and will probably open some big holes for our RB's...whomever BB drafts/signs/keeps....
BJGE/Woody/Kettani/Faulk/draft pick sounds good.......:rocker:
Did I call it or what??
BB apparently feels that "The Defense" has been completely rebuilt and is essentially "finished". Unlike we fans, it merely has not been seen on the Field yet, but is evident to the Coaches from practices.
BB has turned his attention to the rebuilding of "The Offense" with a vengeance.
BB has drafted another potential star LOT to go with Sebastian Volmer and the next generation bookend Offensive tackles are now here. He has drafted two RBs in Verene and Ridley, to go with his two youngsters. BB added spectacular TEs last season. Likewise BB has added young developing WRs the last two seasons.
BB has now drafted the most talented QB in this draft when the issue is doing what all QBs must do first, last and foremost: Throw the football.
Ryan Mallett is now getting three years to sit, learn, "Grow up" and Mature. He was a country boy, who ran around with a bad crowd at Michigan. And eventually transferred to Arkansas, where he was a more model citizen, but his earlier experience at Mchigan dogged him. BB always likes to take QBs who have seen adversity. Brady had Golden Boy Henson hanging over him at Michigan, Cassel had Heisman Trophy winners Palmer and Lienart in front of him. Brian Hoyer had to play with an under-talented Michigan State squad and compete against Michigan and Ohio State. That way he could see how they handled the inevitable adversity, maintained POISE, and still competed.
When Mallett passed the 26, 27, and 60 QB rule, having started at least 29 games, grading out with a Wonderlic of 26 or better, and possessing a completion percentage of virtually 60%, in addition to the height, weight, speed and arm strength, things changed. It revealed that Ryan Mallett was no athletic dummy like Vick, Russel, Leaf, or Young. Suddenly there was a possibility of a great and rare athletic talent being obtained in the third round. This could be a Marino situation all over again.
BB strikes again! If Mallett doesn't mature, in a year or three, only a third round pick is wasted.
as Rick Pitino once said...there is too much F* negativity in this town.....
too many BB wanna b's ......BB knows what the team needs better than all the fruits on tv....so ....let it ride out ...and wait to see how they perform....
IN Belichick we Trust:rocker:
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