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"Any given Sunday" truism bears reflection

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Tunescribe, Dec 16, 2006.

  1. Tunescribe

    Tunescribe PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #61 Jersey

    Reflecting upon my frustrations over the Patriots last year and this season, I've come to realize that the NFL is getting more balanced than ever before while the Pats have declined from a "great" team to a "good" team. Hence, we just can't go into games against ANYONE anymore expecting an easy time of it, and can expect to lose the occasional game we "should" win on paper. The Jets loss, the Detroit sleepwalk and the pounding by Miami suggest as much.

    It boils down to unrealistic expectations. I thought the Jets loss was just a fluke and had high hopes that we'd run the table after beating Chicago. The way we played so flat against Detroit for three quarters had me genuinely angry. But looking back, it was a wakeup call -- at least to me -- that my expectation level remains skewed by 2003/2004. From here-on, I expect every game this team plays to be a dogfight. If we win two playoff games, I will be very, very surprised. And if the Houston game is a struggle for us, I won't be shocked.

    I realize that I'm pretty much stating the obvious here, but for me it's been a rather harsh reality check.
     
  2. shirtsleeve

    shirtsleeve In the Starting Line-Up

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    Tunescribe, you may be somewhat accurate in your assesment and feelings. Yet there are a couple of things to consider. And hope always remains. The 01 and 03 teams were the cardiac kids. Always a nailbiter. This is a rebuilding season, as will next year be. The team has/had grown long in the tooth and we are currently witnessing a purge. There will be bumps in the road. As far as the NFL getting balanced, well, sort of. Until the last three weeks I would have told you you were nuts. But the standings have tightened up a bit. This, imo, is not an accident. Its pretty obvious that the teams with the best f.o.'s and coaching staffs were dominating the league early in the year. This totally defeats the whole parity that the salary cap and free agency were supposed to create. So, and here I get all "conspiracy theory", the league has started their annual insult to our intelligence by coercing the officials to influence the games. That is why we see such crazy outcomes lately across the league.

    As far as the immediate future and past, there seems to be some issues with some of the newer players not drinking the kool aid. Willie said it when he left (and he was the boss in that locker room). And it seems that the Gabriel departure and the Brady statements this week are related to this problem. It seems that the coaching staff and the leaders in the locker room are stepping up and taking charge. The newbies will soon either be guzzling the juice or heading out of town. Control is being re-established. This team is going to come out with the intensity we have come to expect this week, and play inspired football. Or, someone unexpected will be waived again next week.

    So, to put things in perspective, enjoy the season, and the playoffs. Dont EXPECT anything. Hope for the best.
     
  3. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The only point I would add to the late season parity run - injuries. They have hurt the Patriots, Seahawks, Jaguars, Colts, and Giants to name a few. Chicago has now had a couple, part of the Playoff run will depend on which teams can get players back and who has the depth to maintain their standard performance level. I believe the Pats have that depth, but as we have seen, they are not executing and playing as a team to the standard of years past (recent ones that is). I believe Brady calling folks out in general, plus steps like elevating Grahambo to Captain are part of a locker room drive to pull people out of their self-centered cocoons and get them back in harness. Here's hoping!
     
  4. MrBigglesWorth

    MrBigglesWorth Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    I'd agree on control being re-established.

    IMO there have been 2 main problems:

    1. Turnovers(un-patriot like)

    2. Lack of a consistent passing offense. They're dealing with the departures of Givens and Branch.
     
  5. pats1

    pats1 Moderator PatsFans.com Supporter

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    You had me going until there...and here:

    I think we'll let the playoffs decide that. Any classification at this point would be premature.
     
  6. teamplay

    teamplay Practice Squad Player

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    With a healthy Seau, Harrison, and Wilfork, this 2006 team would be a real threat despite the offensive blips. As it is, do any of us really know what to expect? That makes this season fascinatin'.

    The turning point this year for me was someone posting the Pats won-loss record against winning teams since the Philly SB. I can't remember the exact numbers, but it was mediocre...changed my perception of the current team (granted the injuries have been the main culprit).

    We could get healthier in time for the playoffs...Harrison, Wilfork, Watson, Maroney...how sweet would that be?...each week is going to be a thrill!

    Go Pats!
     

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