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Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

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  1. Box_O_Rocks

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  2. nashvillepatsfan

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    I know alot people on here are really excited about the NEW secondary, and scared about the OLB position. Im the other way around. Without getting into the OLB debate, here's why im concerned about the seconday.

    Leigh Bodden, why all the love? Is it because he signed for one year, so he'll be motivated? Is it because he had one statistically good season? Lets keep in mind, 3 of those 6 ints were against Cinci. A team that most people feel was a bad team in 07. Game 1 against the Browns, Palmer threw all over the Browns for 401 yards, and 6tds. The fact that Bodden got 2 ints in that game is more of a side note. Game 2 against the Browns, Palmer had a qb rating of 44!! He just plain sucked that day. Why? I don't know, but im not willing to say it was all about Bodden. The other 3 ints he had that year were against QBs that were struggling. So, why all the love for Bodden? I know, he played in Romeos system, he's familiar with it. So was Hobbs, but everybody hated him. I think i'll just take a wait, and see approach on Bodden.
    Carson Palmer - Cincinnati Bengals - Game Log - NFL - Yahoo! Sports
    Leigh Bodden - New England Patriots - Game Log - NFL - Yahoo! Sports

    Shawn Springs, He's OLD, and apparently has some injury concerns. From what i see, he failed to start 16 games over the last 3 seasons.
    Shawn Springs - New England Patriots - Game Log - NFL - Yahoo! Sports
    So, i guess you could say im not really that excited about him either.

    Terrence Wheatley, 2 tackles, and then injured. Showed a little flash, but not enough for me to feel great about him starting. He's almost still a rookie, kinda like Crable.

    Jonathan Wilhite, 2nd year player, who showed some flashes last year.

    Darius Butler, rookie, so no need to talk about him yet.

    So really, why is everybody so confident that this group of CBs is going to be great, and we should not be concerned? This group is a couple injuries away from starting a rookie, and a 2nd year guy. That might be great, but it might not be. See what im saying? :D

    I didnt bring up the safetys, because honestly im not so worried about them. :eek:
     
  3. Box_O_Rocks

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    Valid points all Nash, but I also don't read too much pessimism into your post either. ;)

    Hobbs was a loss, I'd be more confident if BB had retained him, but I also wanted some interior depth on the OL and his trade brought in two promising OL (Orhnberger & Bussey).

    You've listed the negatives, let's look at some positives.

    Bodden - 73 TT, 3 FF, 11 PD, and 1 int on a horrible Lions team last season. His last season in Cleveburgh 88 TT, 14 PD, 6 int on a horrible Cleveburgh team. Those are the two seasons where he played a full 16 games, he only missed starting the one game in that stretch. In his first two seasons he started two games and saw playing time in 21, he still compiled 43 TT, 2 PD, 1 int, 1 FF in part time play. The next two seasons he played in 22 games and started 20, he's got 86 TT, 24 PD, 5 int, 3 FF. In the last four seasons he has 247 TT to Hobbs 198, 49 PD to Hobbs 36, 12 int to Hobbs 9, 6 FF to Hobbs 1. I like Hobbs, but Bodden appears to be a better play maker. There's room for some optimism.

    Springs - As you mentioned his recent injury history is a concern, like you I don't expect BB to use him as a primary starter, he will be the cagey veteran used situationally to help the youngsters develop smarter.

    Wheatley and Wilhite and Butler are all clones, more or less. Same size, same speed/quickness, same weight, Wheatley and Butler have more of a playmaking history, Wilhite is a more physical player similar to Hobbs. The key here is speed & quickness, think Hobbs athleticism with stronger playmaking skills in 2 of the 3. If they play no worse than Hobbs NE has three starters.

    As you've noted, this group is the one to watch, but I'm cautiously optimistic they will settle in nicely (especially with those stalwart Safeties to back them up).
     
  4. nashvillepatsfan

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern


    Agreed, I would feel better with Hobbs, but most of that is the return game. The CBs, if healthy, should be better than last year. I guess the excitement of the new guys from certain posters, had me curious. Yet everyone is worried about OLB, and im not. Either way, we'll get to see who's the man, and who isnt in a week. Ill be there on 8/2 with my trusted camera :D
     
  5. Scouse Patriot

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    It's not a dramatic concern for me, more of a wait and see how it goes. Theres alot of youngsters in the secondary now and they can't be expected to set the league alight right away, although it would be a nice bonus. Add to that the more experienced Bodden, Springs and Williams, Sanders and to some extent Meriweather and it's a million times better than last season.

    It's a gradual build we are just going to have to be patient with. They wouldn't be so exposed if we got more pressure on the QB anyway, thats my talking point going into this season.
     
  6. Dagg

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    While its not rock solid look what we had last year /puke, its definatley better IMO. History has shown it doesnt need to be great but Ill set for good or ok.
     
  7. patfanken

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    That was a great post Nash, but I think the key work here is "great". I don't think anyone expects the secondary to be "GREAT". All we are looking for is it to be "BETTER". As bad as the secondary was.... As bad as the pass rush was... We DID win 11 games. How much better does the secondary have to be for us to win 2 or 3 more...even with a "seemingly" tougher schedule. The Pass rush should be better. The offense should be better, though it will be tough to top the offense of the last few games.

    Size Matters, and I think that adding Springs and Boddin gives us an element that's been missing for the last few years and that's some size in the secondary, especially on the GL (also see Tank Williams) The other things that we now have that we didn't last season (at least at the start of the season, is QUALITY depth.

    We won't have to trot out JAGS like Lewis Sanders and Mike Richardson as starters. We WILL be able to have the depth with all those DBs to present the FULL package of defensive looks, instead of the Cliff notes version we used last season because of all the injuries.

    Springs and Boddin, with all their baggage, are proven NFL starter, who have had some success in the league. Willhite and Wheatley are 2nd year players who both seem like they have the talent to have a chance to start someday....and Butler might eventually be the best of all of them. I think this a massive improvement over last year's injury riddled group and translates in to the highened expection of fans that the Pats secondary, while not likely to be "great" IS likely to be "better".

    Just a thought - how can ANY secondary be concidered "great" when average QB's ROUTINELY complete 60% of their passes, and good one close to 70%. Back in my day, when a QB completed FIFTY percent of his passes he had a good day.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2009
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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    The Pats did more than expected to address this issue. IMO, this isn't an issue for '09 unless an abnormal rash of injuries occurs.

    That was the only time I recall Hobbs playing his man (Fitz) without a cushion. Hobbs was smoldering after that play and he returned to his sideline with his head hung low. I guess the team felt that, with the game in hand, moving Hobbs up to the LOS was okay.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2009
  9. Synovia

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    According to Football Outsider's charting project, before going to the lions, Bodden may have been the best corner in football. According to their charting project, Springs, last year, was a top 5 guy. If Bodden can get his **** back together, they've got 2 of the 5 best CBs in the league. And thats before the two 2nd year guys who looked great, and the 2nd round pick they just used.
     
  10. BradyFTW!

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    Secondary hasn't become a primary concern- it's been one since about 2005.
     
  11. bostonia3333

    bostonia3333 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    The secondary deficiencies can be masked by a well-sustained pass rush. If Crable can turn into that Rosie Colvin type of player, the secondary only needs to be average at best for this team to achieve their goal. Looking at the Pats schedule this year, it appears that the games against New Orleans, ATL, and Indy are the ones where are secondary could be torched. Other than that, the Pats secondary really should be a non-issue with all the "game manager(AKA run-run-pass)" quarterbacks they will be going up against.

    But I agree with Nashville Pats fan---all the Pats did this year was CHANGE their secondary, not necessarily revamp and restock it. I am elated Hobbs is out of the secondary this year. He cost Tom Brady 2 Super Bowls. That my friends is unforgivable.
     
  12. Metaphors

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    So your point is that the Pats would be in trouble at a single position if they had injuries to BOTH starters at the position?

    The Steelers are 2 injuries away from starting who? Keiwan Ratliff? William Gay? Joe Burnett?

    The Giants are 2 injuries away from starting who? Kevin Dockery? Terrell Thomas? Bruce Johnson?

    What team would be better off than the Pats if 2 starting CBs went down? Possibly the Colts since they've invested picks in CBs in the recent past and don't ask them to do too much in their scheme. So the question isn't if the Pats would be in trouble...the question is would the Pats be in more trouble relative to other teams.

    The talent level of the CBs on the Pats is pretty high. They still have to show that talent translates to the field, fits the scheme and works well with the other DBs next to them.

    Having a boatload of new talent at a position is like having a bunch of wrapped presents under the Christmas tree. They could be a complete bust and you are left with socks and aftershave, but chances are good there are electronics, sporting equipment and power tools in there somewhere.
     
  13. Deus Irae

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    There is only 1 cornerback on the Patriots roster that can reasonably be considered proven NFL starter quality, and that's the old man of the group. That player, Springs, has a recent history of missing games due to injury.

    The "boatload of talent" is just a hope that physical skills (which nearly every NFL hopeful has in abundance) will translate to NFL success. It's not a reality.
     
  14. Box_O_Rocks

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    If we can get past the Cincinnati debacle and look at Bodden, not as a savior or closet elite, but as a solid starting CB who has been productive within the same standards we set for Hobbs (an acceptable standard to most), I'd argue there are two proven NFL starters, and part of another with Wilhite. I still look at Samuel, Gay, and Hobbs transitions from rookies to starters and see Wilhite and Wheatley well along those same timelines. Give Butler half a season and he'll likely be there too. I still like Richardson to boot.

    Speaking as someone who's had to develop youngsters into leaders, the kids are alright, not old Ty Law or Champ Bailey, but alright.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2009
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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    Bodden was cut by an 0-16 team, and it was not all because of his contract. While it's quite possible that he'll bounce back and give the proverbial finger to the Lions, it's also possible that he'll be Fernando Bryant, Part II. I'm not calling the man a stiff or attempting to denigrate him in any way but, given his history, I can't credit him as being verifiably NFL starter quality as of this time.
     
  16. Box_O_Rocks

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    Sure and he was cut by Detroit, and we can't be knowing all the ins and outs of their lockerroom or GM's spreadsheets, but we can also look at his numbers and say the man is around the ball and making plays - and given the support his teammates from those Cleveburgh and Detroit teams offered, his production is encouraging. He's been a starter in the NFL for four years, granted on poor teams, but then so was Wes Welker. We can agree to disagree as to his baseline. :cool:
     
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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    He didn't do that in Detroit. That's the point. Sure, he looks pretty good if you just ignore his time in Detroit. Unfortunately, we can't do that.

    I have no baseline for him, by the way. There are too many examples of both good players looking bad on bad teams, and of poor players being exposed when they change teams, for me to put any baseline on the guy before I see him playing in the Patriots scheme.
     
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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    It mystifies me why a substantive thread like this one with well considered posts from all sides gets rated One star.
     
  19. Metaphors

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    Springs had a lingering calf injury last year and previously fractured his shoulder blade. His other injuries have been groin and hamstring pulls, which are going to happen. Assuming there aren't any lingering concerns over the calf and shoulder injuries (and you would think the Pats checked him out), he really doesn't have a history of chronic weakness or problem areas. He is 34 so injuries are obviously a concern but Springs still plays very well when he is on the field.

    Bodden is 27 so he is at the peak of his physical/experience development. When you classify him as not being "proven NFL starter quality", I'm not sure what that means. He has started in the NFL and I can prove it. That only leaves "quality" in question, which is a little difficult to gauge given the teams that he has been on. I personally haven't seen enough of him to make a judgement, but reports are generally positive.

    Wilhite seems like a competent player that can do what is asked of him (as long as you don't ask too much). Wheatley and Butler are high draft picks with elite skills.

    Taken individually, the questions/concerns about each are worrisome. It is like you had family members in 5 different high-risk (earthquakes, hurricanes, volcanoes, etc.) but highly desirable areas of the world. You would worry about each of them, but the odds that your whole family gets wiped out would be remote. I think enough of this DB talent pans out on the field in 2009 to make the Pats secondary a strength by the playoffs.
     
  20. Deus Irae

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    Re: Farley - Patriots’ secondary has become a primary concern

    The bolded part is really the point on Bodden, and the other (Non-Springs) players are untested.

    As for the odds of the family stuff, that really doesn't work as an analogy.
     
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