After rewatching some of the game last night...

Discussion in ' - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Oswlek, Sep 17, 2009.

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  1. Oswlek

    Oswlek Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    I am even more :confused: how anyone could be down on Maroney. He was very good, even better than I originally thought. I admittedly missed a couple of his runs, but here is what I saw:

    * He was very imvolved in the pass offense, on numerous plays shifting out of the backfield and lining up wide. Three times Brady tossed him the ball, one was an overthrow of an easy 10 yard completion, one was a two yarder where he was immediately hit. The third was a catch and Welker-like run where he juked out one defender and then slid through two others to convert a 2nd and long. Considering how little NE used him in the passing game before, this is a significant improvement.

    * On the 4th down stop, Buffalo's defense both killed NE's surge and had a couple guys in the backfield. As Maroney approached the LOS, there were two defenders in front of him (one who had the angle to the sideline) and a pileup to the inside. Showing excellent situation awareness, LoMo realized the best chance to get the yard was to just ram into the defenders and push them back. The two defenders stood Maroney up, but it wasn't until an OL fell into LoMo that he went down.

    * Maroney put a little shot into the defender as he ran out of bounds on the initial kickoff - something few returners do.

    * Two of Maroney's longer runs, 11 and 8 yards, involved Maroney reading that the primary hole was blocked but a cut back lane was available. Once through the line he put on some nice moves to create more yardage.

    * On the 4 yard loss, Maroney took a toss and ran toward the outside (where the play is supposed to go) and saw immediately two unblocked defenders, one in front and another taking away the edge. He planted to cut back and then saw two more unblocked defenders coming from inside. At that point it was 4 on 1 and LoMo went into full ball security mode.

    Ultimately, Maroney had two other options on that play. He could have just run directly into the first pair of defenders had he assumed the inside would not be there, accepting the 2 yard loss. Of course, that would have drawn jeers of "he can't read his blocks" or "he has no instincts", and beyond that, why should he ever assume if one option is gone that all are?

    The other decision he could have made was to go into Barry Sanders mode and start running backwards and towards the other sideline. Of course, this goes against everything BB preaches and LoMo would have taken flack from more important people than the fans had he done that. Not only that, but as poorly as the blocking was, odds are he would have lost 7-8 yards instead of 4.

    * The other run I saw was a 6 yarder that I initially had felt was a bit tentative. After rewatching it, I realized that Maroney held up because Watson hadn't blocked his man yet. If Maroney just rammed it up there like people want, it would have been a 2 yard run instead of a 6.

    * Not once did the first defender bring him down. Not once.

    So Maroney showed toughness by initiating contact, he showed excellent situational awareness with his decision making and he showed power and shiftiness in his runs schooling single defenders and forcing multiple guys to bring him down.

    Isn't that what a RB is supposed to do? :confused2:
  2. Bring Back Antowain!

    Bring Back Antowain! Practice Squad Player

    Good post, and I agree with you that Maroney looked very good Monday night, probably, not including Faulk, the best running back on the team.

    I thought he was very decisive in his cuts, thought he looked explosive, and thought he looked good in the passing game.

    Bill Belichick often comments on how they evaluate running backs not on how many yards they actually get, but rather if they get the yards that they are supposed to get and what they do after that. So, in essence, that fourth and one play where Maroney didn't get there, there were two guys in the backfield, and Maroney maximized what was available, even though it was a loss.

    I really hope he gets more touches week 2.
  3. Amnorix

    Amnorix On the Game Day Roster

    I also thought Maroney played very well, getting about all that could be had every time he touched the ball, and with no obvious mistakes at all...
  4. JD10367

    JD10367 Practice Squad Player

    I am anti-Maroney. I think he's an underachiever who does too much dancing and not enough N-S running. And even I think he did pretty well, for the limited time they tried to run the ball. The 4th down failures weren't the best play-calls, IMO.
  5. AzPatsFan

    AzPatsFan Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    I too study the game in slo mo and make my opinions based on those observations. But some fans get a single idea in their heads and can never let go. Maroney is not Adrian Peterson, but he is a quality big back wiht speed, who has frequently been dinged up.
  6. cstjohn17

    cstjohn17 Supporter Supporter

    #54 Jersey

    I watched the NFL replay as well, although I am not completely sold on him he did show some flashes. I have comments on a couple of items above:
    1) Yes, good he lowered his shoulder down, but it was a kicker lets not get carried away.
    2) Yes, on the 4 yard loss he was tackled by a lone defender, if he could have escaped there is some shot he makes it to the LOS. I am convinced he was some sort of tell, teams know when he is going to run.

    By far the worst thing he did was totally avoid contact on a LB blitz, Mitchell came up the middle and Maroney moved right out of the way. Brady got creamed but was able to get the pass off to Welker for a pretty good gain. I could be wrong but I don't think he played another snap after that.

    Yes, there were some good signs but I haven't seen anything that an average NFL starter couldn't do. But at least it was a step in the right direction.
  7. eagle eye

    eagle eye In the Starting Line-Up

    #85 Jersey

    Maroney played well the other night for sure, but I would have to say I was more impressed by Taylor getting those hard yards in the trenches.
  8. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic Supporter Supporter

    Maroney has terrific potential, and he showed some nice flashes Monday night. I don't think we've used him terribly well since his rookie year, and injuries have been a major factor. I think he could be a tremendous weapon as part of a tandem backfield and used as a receiver out of the backfield. He is more of an all-purpose weapon than an every down bread and butter RB.
  9. JackBauer

    JackBauer Pro Bowl Player

    I was much more impressed with Maroney than Taylor, and I'd venture to say even that it's not his fault that the OL is mediocre, at best, when it comes to run blocking (especially on the toss sweeps, which NEVER seem to work).
  10. emoney_33

    emoney_33 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    So that means they know when he is NOT going to run as well. In which case, no team should ever come close to biting on a play action when Maroney is in the game. Right? Or are you not really convinced but know that it's pretty hard to prove/disprove?
  11. rabthepat

    rabthepat 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

    Maroney is still Maroney. Our running game is still the non-threat it was a year ago. Come crunch time, the strong defenses will ignore Maroney and his RB cohorts and rush after Tom the way the Giants did in the Superbowl.

    Vs Buffalo - 23 attempts for 73 yards, 3.2 yds/carry, 24th ranked rush offense.

    I would have traded all our backs for Chester Taylor of the Minnesota Vikings.

    Send the hate....
  12. Oswlek

    Oswlek Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    There were 4 defenders there. It was not a lone defender tackle.

    I touched on his bad blitz pickup on my thoughts thread. Maroney did not move out of the way, he lunged when he should have held his ground. By lunging he created a bit of space and an easier momentum direction for the defender to swim. Maroney did play after that.

    All that said, he was far better than an average starter.

    I am genuinely confused by this. Both RBs were used in much the same way (with the exception of Taylor not being as involved in the passing game). It wasn't like he was Christian Okoye bowling over guys on short yardage. The only reason they were "hard yards in the trenches" was because the OL didn't block as well and because Taylor didn't run as well as LoMo.
  13. Oswlek

    Oswlek Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    And NE would still have run for 3.0 yard a carry. Chester Taylor would not have gotten a single yard more than Maroney did yesterday on his attempts. I guess someone like Jacobs might have bowled over both guys on the 4th down play, but he wouldn't have gotten the 11 Maroney did on that play.
  14. borg

    borg In the Starting Line-Up

    I rewatched that pathetic blitz pick up/ turnstyle impersonator. He avoided contact much like he does on running plays.
  15. makoute

    makoute In the Starting Line-Up

    and you would get the same result, since the problem is the o line...
  16. Oswlek

    Oswlek Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    I wouldn't go that far, but it was ugly nonetheless. He is no Kevin Faulk in pass pro.
  17. BradyFTW!

    BradyFTW! Supporter Supporter

    #12 Jersey

    Reasoning with these people is... difficult. Those of us that went back and actually broke down the game recording a little seem to be in unanimous agreement that Maroney did a very good job. Those who don't care for that kind of thing, and are just out to make uninformed snap judgments, pretty much think what they think at this point. Everytime Maroney gets cornered by *four* defenders in the backfield, it will somehow be his fault.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2009
  18. JackBauer

    JackBauer Pro Bowl Player

    But just THINK if we had Chester Taylor pounding the rock!
  19. reflexblue

    reflexblue Supporter Supporter

    #91 Jersey

    Thank You ......seriously.
  20. ALP

    ALP Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

    in the first half, when the OL actually run blocked a little, maroney was running like a beast....

    couldnt be brought down easily, he was hitting defenders, and he juked a little too....

    i was VERY impressed, i dont remember him running like that ever before

    p.s., he was hitting the hole HARD
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