Welcome to PatsFans.com

Best Offensive Weapons since 2007?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by NEPettyOfficer72, May 24, 2013.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. NEPettyOfficer72

    NEPettyOfficer72 On the Game Day Roster

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2011
    Messages:
    478
    Likes Received:
    3
    Ratings:
    +9 / 3 / -0

    I know about the great 2007 Offense and how Moss and Welker ruined defenses and etc. but consider the following.... And yes, people I guess will have to either excuse my optimism or get used to it because I've always been a very positive person in life. But check this out... Is it possible that we have the best offensive weapons that we've had during Bill Belicheck and Tom Brady's reign in Foxboro?

    1) The offense of 2007 while nearly unstoppable, did not have a consistent running game and physical natured presence like it does now. Not just a consistent running game, but NE had one of the top running games in the NFL last season and now they've added a talented and physical runner in LeGarrett Blount and change of pace shifty veteran Leon Washington. Stevan Ridley looks to emerge as one of the top backs in the NFL if he hasn't already and Shane Vereen showcased his exceptional receiving skills and talent as a runner, more than capable of taking over for the departed Danny Woodhead. Compare everything I just said to Sammy Morris and Laurence Maroney lol...

    2) Moss did everything but could NOT GO over the middle. Both Aaron Dobson and Mark Harrison are big, physical guys with a lot of strength and will go over the middle and absorb hits from these little defensive backs. Not only that but Josh Boyce, TJ Moe and Michael Jenkins aren't any softies either. All three of those guys are physical in every aspect as well. Welker was the only receiver we had that wasn't afraid of that, but we have at least 4 other guys now to fill the void in that aspect of toughness.

    3) They had Ben Watson, who was very fast and did a lot of things from the Tightend position that year, but if both guys are healthy then we have two of the best Tightends in the NFL, and even 80% of them is better than most good tightends. Gronk and Hernandez can do any and everything on the field both deep and short. And Hernandez is just a fast as Watson was, but quicker and more elusive, and a better route runner with more playmaking and wide receiver ability. That's something we didn't have in 2007 that could've helped in the Superbowl.

    4) It seems like I keep beating a dead horse when I say that Danny Amendola is better at this point in his career in every aspect of the game than Wes Welker was when he first came to NE in 2007. He like EVERYBODY ELSE in the NFL is prone to injury, I mean my God people, it happens but take this into consideration. If he stays healthy this year, then we have a bigger, faster, stronger, quicker, more agile, and better pass catching version of Wes Welker who can do all of the same things but do them even better. And get this, he adds a dimension to his game that Wes Welker didn't have and that's getting deep. Imagine if Welker could also do that back in 2007?

    5) Speaking of getting deep, we now have at least 4 receivers in Danny Amendola, Josh Boyce, Aaron Dobson and Mark Harrison who can get deep and stretch the field if asked upon, not to mention our monster Tightends if they can stay healthy. Back in 2007, our only deep threats were Donte Stallworth and of course Randy Moss... realistically just Randy Moss. With that now, defenses have to give that respect, which of course will open things up over the middle of the field and underneath ever more.

    6) The depth at the Tightend position is really stout and really good this year. Even if our guys don't remain healthy, we still have TE Jake Ballard, monster kid Zach Sudfield, under-rated Hooh-man (caught a few long crucial third down passes), Daniel Fells and I don't think I'm missing anybody else. A lot of good to solid options at that position.

    7) We re-signed superstar OT Sebastian Vollmer, who at this point in his career as emerged as a top 5 at what he does. So you add him with Logan Mankins, who remains a top 5 Guard in this league and the rising star of Nate Solder and you have a very good offensive line, that excels in run blocking.

    8) Wide Receiver Coaching extraordinaire Brian Daboll is back, the guy that worked with our receivers during the spread-the ball and Superbowl era of NE. Remember Deion Branch, Troy Brown, David Givens and David Patten? Yeah, that guy, he is back.

    9) I really like Julian Edelman at the slot position if he can stay healthy, giving Danny Amendola and Josh Boyce more down field assignments. Not only that, but he is really explosive on smoke screens, reverses, and trick plays of that nature.

    10) Tom Brady feels better than he ever has throwing the ball, and if its coming from his mouth than you have to believe its true.. Counts for something ;)

    Give me thoughts and feedback, Happy Memorial Day everyone!
     
  2. Ozymandias

    Ozymandias In the Starting Line-Up

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    2,650
    Likes Received:
    96
    Ratings:
    +263 / 2 / -1

    No Jersey Selected

    You make a lot of great points. Just note that similar things were stated last season as well, that 2012 would rival 2007 and so on. For various reasons that obviously wasn't the case beyond statistics.

    Let's wait until they play in a game first before we make any judgments on where they could be potentially. 2007 was special for a lot of reasons however, I'd want 2013 to do something that 2007 season did not do: Win the Super Bowl.
     
  3. supafly

    supafly PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Messages:
    15,568
    Likes Received:
    423
    Ratings:
    +1,338 / 11 / -7

    #24 Jersey

    I generally tend to agree with you, but you are also underestimating the 2007 running game too.

    The YPC for 2007 and 2012 are almost identical. In 2007 it was 4.1, and last season it was rounded up to 4.2.

    The only real difference is that last year's 2012 rushing attack was more committed to running the ball (due to getting more plays with the hurry up).

    Last season they had 523 attempts and 2184 yds total on the ground.

    In comparison, the 2007 team had 451 attempts, and 1849 yds total.

    As I said, I think that you still have a valid point that the running game is definitely better, but Maroney and Morris both had 4.5 YPC averages that year. Had Maroney gotten more than 185 attempts (in comparison Ridley had 290 attempts last season), he'd likely have had just as good--if not better yardage as Ridley. After all, Maroney had 185 attempts for 835 yds. If you'd throw in another 105 carries, his average would have actually equated to more total rushing yds than Ridley's great season last year. It'd have been at least 1300 yds, if not slightly more.

    The difference is that Belichick was more dedicated to the running game last season with 523 attempts, but that was also due to the increase in total number of offensive plays, which was benefitted by the hurry up.
     
  4. supafly

    supafly PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Messages:
    15,568
    Likes Received:
    423
    Ratings:
    +1,338 / 11 / -7

    #24 Jersey

    Another thing is that you keep bringing up Mark Harrison, who is definitely a longshot to even make the 53 man roster.

    Of course we're all rooting for him to make it, but with 4 WR spots already locked up (Amendola, Dobson, Boyce, Slater) that is leaving Harrison with some pretty long odds to compete with Edelman, Jenkins, Jones, and Moe for the last remaining 2 spots.

    Anything can happen, but I believe that our offense is still going to revolve heavily around the slot game and the quick timing passes to the slot. Tom Brady isn't #1 in the NFL in attempts, completions, and QBR in the slot since 2009 for no good reason. Those quick timing throws help to do a lot of things, while also masking some weaknesses and potential problems. While we may not see as many actual attempts to Amendola in the slot as we saw with Welker last season, it probably will be 3/4 or more.

    The other rookie WRs probably all have a much better upside than last year's pathetic group (without including #83 obviously), but they certainly have their work cut out for them in terms of trying to pick up this system, the playbook in itself, and all of the specific nuances of being able to read and react to the same things that Brady is seeing. Hopefully 1-2 of them are able to do that on some level of success, because we'll likely need that from our WR2 and WR3; especially if one of the TEs is injured or doesn't start the season on time.
     
  5. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    Messages:
    13,867
    Likes Received:
    315
    Ratings:
    +975 / 14 / -5

    #51 Jersey

    That's a particularly optimistic view for a lot of question marks NEPettyOfficer72. The 2007 squad had a collection of seasoned NFL veterans. The 2013 squad, whilst collecting talent, has a lot of young players in key positions.
     
  6. NEPettyOfficer72

    NEPettyOfficer72 On the Game Day Roster

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2011
    Messages:
    478
    Likes Received:
    3
    Ratings:
    +9 / 3 / -0

    Yes, I agree without hesitation but you have to look at number of talented backs, depth and rotation and variety of different types of talent at that position you would have to say is a lot better than 2007. Back then, we had what Laurence Maroney, Sammy Morris, and Kevin Faulk. That's good but compare to

    Stevan Ridley - 1,000 yard runner, almost made the probowl and can catch passes out of the backfield.

    Shane Vereen - good all around runner with an excellent set of hands and nose for the first down marker on third downs.

    Brandon Bolden - Downhill, powerful runner with quickness and speed combo. Decent set of hands as well

    LeGarrett Blount - physical and powerful runner with full steam ahead. Loves to hurdle people as well and is a potential 1,000 yard guy.

    Leon Washington - legend at kick returns, and has been a very good shifty third down running back.

    That's 5 very good to solid backs that we have, and you know we'll keep at least 4 which gives us a better rotation, and more options and a lot more depth. And they can all receive with the exception of LeGarrett Blount, who which Kevin Faulk was good at.
     
  7. supafly

    supafly PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Messages:
    15,568
    Likes Received:
    423
    Ratings:
    +1,338 / 11 / -7

    #24 Jersey

    I think that you can make a case that the 2013 RB corps can be better than the 2007 corps...sure.

    That said, like ausbacker stated--we still have a lot of questions too, and the youth and lack of experience factor to boot.

    To play devil's advocate, Vereen hasn't seemed to fully grasp something yet despite the potential that we've seen in limited play. I don't know why that is, but Belichick hasn't seemed to fully trust him out there to this point. Hopefully we see that change this year (may not be an option with Woodhead gone), but it's still all about "potential" right now with Vereen.

    Washington hasn't seen much actual gametime duty aside from special teams/return duty, so he's another one who is something of a question mark. We probably won't even see much of him unless Vereen proves inadequate or becomes injured. If anything, he can offer a rotational role in a limited way for 3rd down reps.

    Bolden may not even make the team...he's been in BB's doghouse, was suspended for PED use, and is currently in a walking boot. The decision for Belichick to give up an actual draft pick for Blount says a lot to me about Bolden's chances of making the team this year, as does Belichick's decision to continue to look at other RB's like Felix Jones etc.

    Blount is another who is probably 50/50, maybe 60/40 to make the team. He's had attitude problems, hasn't done much of anything lately, and offers a bit of a limited skill set. He's a 250 lb bigger/bruising back, who likely will be used for GL formations and short yardage situations.

    I think we have a lot of potential and upside in this 2013 group, but there are also a lot of questions too. Personally, I don't think I'd have gotten rid of Woodhead myself, but that's just me.
     
  8. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2004
    Messages:
    21,301
    Likes Received:
    181
    Ratings:
    +531 / 38 / -7

    Personally, I think expecting our WR's to surpass 2007 is simply delusional.

    #1 WR 1493 yards
    #2 WR 1175 yards
    #3/#4 WR 1146 yards

    And yes, and we had Faulk coming out of the backfield.

    The 2007 patriots were one of the very best passing teams of all time.

    Also, I just don't understand the idea that Washington and Blount instead of Woodhead will make a huge difference in making our running game a top running game. Most here don't even expect Blount to make the team.
     
  9. Ive_Killed_People

    Ive_Killed_People On the Game Day Roster

    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Messages:
    370
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0

    It all depends on health and chemistry. We get both in our favor then yeah this could be the most dynamic unstoppable offense ever.
     
  10. AzPatsFan

    AzPatsFan Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2004
    Messages:
    6,551
    Likes Received:
    153
    Ratings:
    +369 / 33 / -16

    Everyone seems to neglect the Offensive line. It may be the best line in the Belichick era, when considered top to bottom. You could give that to the 2011 line with the KC RG, but the depth was missing then. No longer. In addition to the deep RB corps, there is the power line to create holes for them, now. Plus the double TEs formations are formidable as well. I don't think we ever had the experienced starter swing depth like Svitek and Haslam outside and McDonald, Connoly inside

    In fact the WR contigent may be the weakest squad, but I think it is full of talented youth, but a lot of experienced older pros like Amendola and Jenkins too.
     
  11. PatsFan37

    PatsFan37 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2004
    Messages:
    1,517
    Likes Received:
    10
    Ratings:
    +23 / 0 / -1

    #37 Jersey

    I was reading the thread waiting for someone to point this out. Ballard is an unsung addition. Svitek allows Cannon to train at guard and though we haven't seen Cannon play there he could be fearsome. Solder and Vollmer are two of the best in the league as is Mankins, who is now healthy. We have no reason to believe Gronk won't be out there by mid-to-late season and certainly for the playoffs.

    With the two big tight-ends, Gronk & Ballard, yer aging mutha could run behind that line. Brady will have time to pass and when he does, he can hit anyone in stride.

    A good OL and Brady is a whole lot more important than receiving talent when a good DL starts to rush.

    (That said, we need a thread about 2013 as the building year for the best secondary since the Harrison/Law days)
     
  12. NEPettyOfficer72

    NEPettyOfficer72 On the Game Day Roster

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2011
    Messages:
    478
    Likes Received:
    3
    Ratings:
    +9 / 3 / -0

    Because Leon Washington was not only known for his kick returns but his change of pace runs on third downs for Curtis Martin or LaDainian Tomlinson, and even Marshawn Lynch. Pete Carroll bragged, and said that NE was getting a dynamic player still and that he hated to see him go. This guy is a decent receiver, and very shifty once he gets the ball in his hands. Additionally, Blount maybe the most talented runner on the team in terms of physicality, toughness and ability to break tackles. That combination of both outshadows Woodhead, because quite frankly, Shane Vereen has more than enough to do all of the things that Woodhead did but better.
     
  13. NEPettyOfficer72

    NEPettyOfficer72 On the Game Day Roster

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2011
    Messages:
    478
    Likes Received:
    3
    Ratings:
    +9 / 3 / -0

    It could be! These kids are younger which means they will be stronger and better equipped to avoid injuries, plus they are a lot bigger and more physical tha our 2007 crew.. so health maybe on our side. Additionally, it only took Moss and Welker one off season to develop that Chemistry so why can't it we this group. These young guys are smart and played in complicated College systems so I think these kids can come in right away and develop Chemistry.
     
  14. RayClay

    RayClay Pro Bowl Player

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2005
    Messages:
    18,932
    Likes Received:
    373
    Ratings:
    +1,030 / 7 / -14

    #75 Jersey

    Why not wait until a preseason game, see if any of these receivers make the team, then move along the various steps to greatest offense of all time?

    Of course, while we're on that track, I'm willing to award the GOAT if they they win every game, not just everyone but the last one, regardless of individual achievement, because I'm an easy grader.
     
  15. Raymond

    Raymond Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,288
    Likes Received:
    14
    Ratings:
    +42 / 2 / -1

    No Jersey Selected

    NEPettyOfficer

    I believe you have imbibed in an overdose of Pat's Kool Aid....................

    not that there's anything wrong with that.;)
     
  16. RayClay

    RayClay Pro Bowl Player

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2005
    Messages:
    18,932
    Likes Received:
    373
    Ratings:
    +1,030 / 7 / -14

    #75 Jersey

    I agree on the running game, because Maroney simply could not sustain drives. Simply averaging carries proves nothing, it's about consistency and moving the chains and getting tough yards when the defense is actually playing the run.

    IMO, Ridley seems good, but is hardly a proven great back. Maybe he will be, but there's levels ahead of him. Vereen has proved nothing, Bolden has proved nothing, Blount has proved nothing.

    Good potential there, but being more consistent than Maroney is a pretty low bar.
     
  17. patsinthesnow

    patsinthesnow PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2008
    Messages:
    8,984
    Likes Received:
    391
    Ratings:
    +779 / 16 / -7

    #87 Jersey

    I don't think people are realizing how good last years team was.

    2012 Patriots:
    34.8 ppg 3rd all time
    20.7 ppg against
    14.1 ppg differential

    4 losses by a combined 11 points. (2.8ppg defeat margin)

    The four offensive targets were only healthy together for 2-3 games. The game they were, they shred the best defense in the league for 450 yards. Sadly, terrible redzone offense led to only 23 pts on the board vs the Seahawks.

    In the AFCCG, the team didn't have: #1 CB, #1 target, #1 pass rusher.

    In order for the 2013 team to be as good, Amendola must perform/stay healthy and Dobson be a viable 4th option. Teams just couldn't stop the trio of Gronk, Welker, Hernandez when they were healthy the last two years.

    A healthy 2012 team is one of our best teams ever. Right with the 76, 03, 04, and 07 squads.

    So how about hoping for best weapons since 2012? :D
     
  18. AzPatsFan

    AzPatsFan Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2004
    Messages:
    6,551
    Likes Received:
    153
    Ratings:
    +369 / 33 / -16

    I think the 2012 season was the building year for the secondary. Pieces like Tavon and Alphonzo and Taquib were found. Season 2013 is the harvest year. The secondary is deep and talented. The obvious ST additions, Ebner and Cole, are going to have to fight for jobs as potential regular defenders, also excel at ST. Players like Logan Ryan, Duran Hammond Kyle Arrington and Alphonzo Dennard are very good ST players as well.
     
  19. tonyto3690

    tonyto3690 Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2012
    Messages:
    896
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0

    Our OL is absolutely better than 2007, as are obviously, our RBs and TEs. Mostly the issue with the 2007 OL was Koppen and Kazcur were massive liabilities. WR obviously goes hugely to 2007.

    I don't think we'll ever see as explosive an offense as 2007, but as a total package I'll gladly take last year or this years offense over it.

    That being said, I think our rushing success was largely overstated. Most of the good gains came from the hurry up where Brady would have the defense on their heels. We couldn't just go out and beat teams down like the Niners/Seahawks could.
     
  20. goheels22002

    goheels22002 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2009
    Messages:
    4,193
    Likes Received:
    152
    Ratings:
    +451 / 4 / -12

    #50 Jersey

    The 2007 Patriots had two first ballot NFL Hall of Fame wide receivers. I don't see a single wide receiver on this team in the same area code as Moss and Welker.

    I think the running backs are collectively better and more diverse than '07 and the 2013 tight ends entirely dependent on staying healthy. Ballard, Gronk and Hernandez are all coming off seasons of missing all or huge portions of 2012. If the Patriots could get a full season including playoffs out of 2 of 3 of those guys, this offense will be a top 3 in the NFL.

    But '07? 17-1? 5,000 yards passing, 50 passing TDs, 1,800 yards on the ground? I doubt it.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

unset ($sidebar_block_show); ?>