Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by SVN, Oct 24, 2012.
Answers elusive for Patriots defense
kinda calls out patricia and bb
Another Curran article that I'm not overly impressed with. What did he expect to happen? Belichick and his coaches have never given out information before, and they're not going to start now.
Indeed. I like Curran, he's pretty articulate when he wants to be and is pretty fair on the Pats (without being as timid in his assessments as Reiss can annoyingly be), but too many of his CSN articles read like half-baked tumblr updates. Yeah we KNOW the defense is bad and that BB and Patricia deserve the blame. I think everyone who follows the Patriots even poorly get that. But to just half-assedly vomit those thoughts onto a page as a veneer for criticizing the Pats PR is just lazy. I live in the Philly area, and I have to read dumb articles like this in regards to Andy Reid every damn day. They're the complete opposite of insight. Too bad.
I agree with the sentiment of the other posters. I think Curran is one of the better writers but this was a lazy article. Of course the lack of success by the secondary falls on Patricia and ultimately BB. And the canned, automaton like answers given to the media by BB and staff have nothing to do with it (it actually is a positive to say little to the media, always). Get over it Curran, this is how BB runs the organization (regarding media comments).
I am one who recognizes us Patriot fans have been VERY fortunate to have BB at the helm of the Patriots yet recognize he and his staff have fallen down on the responsibility of fielding an effective secondary. The Patriots have allowed QBs who are considered the mopes of the NFL to put up big numbers last year (the year before that wasn't pretty) and it hasn't changed this year. The Patriots have had a string of questionable secondary selections (draft and FA). The Patriots lack of a consistent pass rush certainly hasn't helped. And it appears that the technique practiced by the Patriots hasn't jived with the players they have chosen to keep/play.
IMHO these are the items that Curran could speak to....items that dig into the nuts and bolts of the secondary's trouble.
The good news is?? With a routinely ineffective secondary in 2011, the Patriots were a play or two from being SB champs. Let's see if that kind of magic can happen again this year (in lieu of what seems like the impossible dream! An effective secondary).
What is so elusive? The players are making mistakes. Coaches are trying to teach them not to make mistakes but aren't doing the best job of it.
Just a reminder last week our starting D backfield, totalled less than 6 years NFL experience.. so they need a lot of time to develop.
The lack of padded practices also impedes their progress..
Just read BB's explanations in this article......his D philosophy is clearly stated...."Manage the Damage." While the best D's in the league try to stop offenses, a Patriots D tries to "Manage the Damage"......aka...Hope the other team shoots itself in the foot. The Pats are very lucky that very few quality QBs are on their schedule
its funny though...because the run d is very good. thats not 'managing the damage'...thats stopping the run. the secondary isnt managing anything but to give up huge plays. they are getting damaged more.
Everything Bill does is based on percentages. He'd love to have a talented stand alone secondary, but it's been a long time. It is what it is, which is why getting the offense back into a more consistent ryhthm and eliminating mistakes (by players and coaches including bizarro seemingly agenda driven personnel decisions) that are leaving points all over the field actually has to be job 1.
Every play an offense is on the field is a play the offense could screw up. That's pretty basic stuff, and BB's not wrong there. The problem is that this defensive backfield has a very difficult time limiting plays. You'd rather give up a 20 yard completion than a 50 yard completion, but even giving up the 20 yard completions sucks.
This team has some defensive pieces:
Love (sort of)
but two of those are rookies and none of them are in the defensive backfield. There's no Rodney Harrison, no Ty Law, no Asante Samuel, or even a James Sanders. This year's draft is supposed to be excellent for safeties. If the Patriots can draft the right one, we could see a very dramatic improvement in overall defensive play.
I would like to see our Linebackers blitzing more often.
1. We have THREE linebackers who are good at blitzing
2. Our 4 man DLine obviously can't apply enough pressure on their own in some games.
I think that Tommy Boy steals his best stuff from Mary
Makes sense to me on a couple of levels.
Completely agree with what you said (and said almost the same thing as you just did in a post in the 'Dennard' thread). The Patriots/BB have a roadmap for victory that is largely effective even with a largely ineffective secondary.
And while the offense is not hitting on all cylinders, I believe it will come around. The same thing happened last year with arguably a less capable offense (it was a tough stretch in the middle of the season where the D actually played a couple of good games). The offense did eventually re-hit its stride....and I don't see anything to make me believe that won't happen again. There are just too many strengths on the offensive side of the ball for it not to be a highly effective offense.
I still have no idea why they cut Sanders. They guy wasn't the fasts/most athletic, but he knew where everyone needed to be and could QB the backfield. More than anything that is what it seems they are lacking right now.
They likely saw him on a decline. That would explain why he is already on his second team in 2 years since his release.
It was a mistake, just as the Meriweather cut was a mistake. They weren't necessarily mistakes based upon the players themselves. They were mistakes because of what was replacing them.
Sanders couldn't be that QB in the backfield because he couldn't play the position well enough to remain on the field. Sanders was one of those high floor low ceiling players whose range between his floor and ceiling kept shrinking once he was extended. He reportedly came in to camp after the lockout out of condition and he had begun to have some attitude issues with the difference in perception the team was developing about his performance having peaked or regressed. That made him something Bill won't even tolerate in a much more talented player or one with remaining upside, a potential negative leader.
Meriweather was just an uncoachable idiot. Maybe because he saw or was told how the writing on the wall reads here. He determined he would take his own approach to playing the position and trust his own instincts as opposed to doing what the coaches dictate. That will never fly here. Even Ty Law had to change his approach or preference to playing his position and play it Bill's way. And Ty was an elite talent. He had to do what Bill determined was in the best interest of the unit overall schematically and go from there. It worked (he still got to make his plays) so he was OK with it.
You don't stick with something you know isn't working at the expense of seeking out potential better alternatives in the Not For Long league where if you aren't getting better you're getting worse. Hasn't worked out better in hindsight, but the alternative was no more viable long term. As Bill says, you never know what you have until you see it perform in your system. After 3-4 seasons, Sanders and Meriweather weren't cutting it for multiple reasons, and unless you have the stones to move on you will never get it where it needs to be. It's the same risk reward calculation coaches find themselves facing annually which is why most teams turn nearly their entire roster over every 4-5 seasons.
In interviews Ty and Rodney, and for that matter Tedy, Ted Johnson and Vrabel, would talk about how they would see something in the offense and switch assignments post snap to confuse the offense and often this would result in turnovers and big plays. These guys were all established vets and Romeo and Bill allowed them to do it because they knew the system inside and out and could do either job.
I'm sure Meriweather and to a lesser degree Sanders saw himself in this light and got exposure to them making these plays and thought they should be given more latitude on the field to do so but they couldn't even get base right most of the time.
I agree with Tom Curran. Patricia and Belichick respond to questions about
the Patriots' leaky pass defense using doubletalk.
All you have to do is watch a game from the stands to see wide receivers open everywhere.
I agree that Merriweather was one of the more talented and physical DBs on the Patriots when he was let go two years ago But Merriweather was released for a host of reasons: his on-field lack of discipline and unnecessary penalties, his purple Camaro, and his off-field behavior with guns and booze and unsavory characters.
All of the shenanigans continued in Chicago, and he couldn't handle being criticized by Lovey Smith. His brief tenure in DC hasn't been any better. The guy was a headache and wasn't worth the distractions he created.
Which is truly unfortunate because if he was even moderately coachable he likely was going to be a great player. It's kinda the inverse of AHern.
You don't cut Sanders and Meriweather and replace them with the likes of Brown and Ihedigbo. Belichick completely screwed the pooch with that defensive backfield last year. And, yes, sometimes you do stick with something that isn't working at the expense of seeking out potential better alternatives. Sometimes the devil you know is better than the devil you don't.
It's rather like complaining that water is wet. Yes, it is, but that's the nature of water - or the Patriots coaching staff.
Man...that is revealing!
I have not been to a Pats game in three years and so can't comment but hope you were exaggerating a bit.
I know, we might have gotten to a superbowl had we not moved on to those lesser talents... Sometimes it's a coin flip, but having flipped it at least then you know.
I don't deny that BB did a lacklustre job in the D but puzzled at the way you frame things with none of us knowing what happens in the practices/meetings/team strategy.
What if at that time BB saw something relatively better in Brown and Ihedigbo and decided to take a chance? If the devil you know isn't working and the other devils show more promise, why not roll the dice? After all, BB did give a sixth routh back-up QB some chances a decade back, right?
And do you really think that BB or any coach for the matter have the luxury of waiting around for potential better alternatives? Maybe there are other coaches who might sink a season sticking to players who don't want to change but BB doesn't seem one of them.
That's your response? I thought you were trying to be serious with your posts. My mistake.
I don't know what's puzzling you here. Just to use an example, and I'm not saying these are accurate numbers, but I'm using high ones to avoid getting sidetracked: when you replace a 100 with a 95, you have downgraded. In the case at hand, anyone arguing Sergio Brown was an upgrade over Meriweather or Sanders should immediately check themselves in for an MRI, because there's something wrong with them.
He screwed up. Seeing something is one thing. Seeing something that's not there is another.
Of course they wait around. It happens all the time, on every team, in every sport. We see it on this team every year. You don't see them cutting every non-All Pro, do you?
Am I right that you have no inside knowledge of the Pats and what you opine is based on what public information?
If yes, what's puzzling me is this: neither you nor I or I guess any of the fans on our site have inside track as to what is going on in the practices, how the coaches view the players and where they fit in the schemes; and yet you make a statement that you don't cut XYZ and replace them with ABC. (note that I am not disagreeing that BB did a less than steller job on the D side for the last few years.)
To borrow your example: you as a fan assign a value of 100 and 95 and so says ergo, 95 < 100 and so it is wrong to substitute. I am pointing out that BB and the coaches probably have a different scale/valuation that could have assigned different ranks in various categories that might have led them to choose one over the other.
So, don't know how you think I shouldn't be puzzled.
Agree on the second post.
Third one - I don't deny that all coaches will be on the lookout for the persons who can contribute more to a team and have to wait if need be with what they currently have. But to extend that argument and claim that poorly performing players (again by the coaches scale/ranking, not the rank you or I give them) should not be cut is a poor one. Let me know if I misunderstood your stance.
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