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Greatest Pats Team Ever? My whatifsports.com Pats tournament

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by ivanvamp, Feb 9, 2012.

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  1. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Let's face it, the Pats have had some incredible teams over the years (and also, sadly, some real stinkers). But which one was the best? Clearly this is a fantasy exercise as there's no way to know how John Hannah would have done blocking Vince Wilfork, or if Wes Welker would have gotten open against Mike Haynes. But just for fun, I'm doing a whatifsports.com all-time Pats tournament. Based on my purely subjective standards (success, record, stats, eyeball test, etc.), here are the seedings:

    #1 - 2004 - 14-2, SB champ
    #2 - 2007 - 16-0, AFC champ
    #3 - 2003 - 14-2, SB champ
    #4 - 2001 - 11-5, SB champ (probably a little high, but hey, they were champs)
    #5 - 2011 - 13-3, AFC champ
    #6 - 1976 - 11-3, Ben Dreith moment
    #7 - 2006 - 12-4, AFC runner-up
    #8 - 1985 - 11-5, AFC champ
    #9 - 1996 - 11-5, AFC champ
    #10 - 2010 - 14-2, AFCE champ
    #11 - 1978 - 11-5, playoffs
    #12 - 1986 - 11-5, playoffs

    I'm going to give the top 4 seeds byes and go with this format (no re-seeding):

    Top half of the bracket
    #12 at #5 - winner plays at #4
    #9 at #8 - winner plays at #1

    Bottom half of the bracket
    #11 at #6 - winner plays at #3
    #10 at #7 - winner plays at #2


    I'll keep you posted on the results and stats. I'm going to try to be true to those teams' natures - for example, whatifsports allows you to set a run-heavy, a pass-heavy, or a balanced offense. The 1985 Pats will obviously be run-heavy and the 2007 Pats will be pass-heavy, etc.

    I'm actually going to predict that the 2007 Pats will win it all, because whatifsports is a stat-based game and the stats from that team - both offense and defense - were unbelievable. But we'll see.
     
  2. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Game 1: #12 1986 Pats at #5 2011 Pats

    '86 Pats: 35
    '11 Pats: 32

    And right away we have our first "upset". The stats tell one story, but the results tell another, as the 12th seeded 1986 Patriots stunned the 5th seeded 2011 Patriots 35-32. The '11 squad dominated on the stat sheet, racking up big advantages in all the major areas:

    Rushing:
    '11: 172 yds
    '86: 131 yds

    Passing:
    '11: 300 yds
    '86: 253 yds

    First Downs:
    '11: 33
    '86: 14

    Time of Possession:
    '11: 33:22
    '86: 26:38

    Despite the statistical disparity, the '86 Pats won the game thanks in large part to two turnovers: a Tom Brady interception and the first fumble of Benjarvis Green-Ellis' career. Here's how the game unfolded....

    The '11 Pats got off to a good start in the first quarter, as their defense held the '86 Pats to a 3-and out on their first possession. They then got the ball at their own 35 and proceeded to move the ball. The key play was a 52 yard completion to Chad Ochocinco on 3rd and 5 that put the ball on the '86 Pats' 8 yard line. A couple of plays later, Green-Ellis slammed into the end zone for a 7-0 lead.

    After another quick 3-and-out by the '86 squad, the '11 Pats marched downfield again from their own 28 down to the '86's 34 yard line where the drive stalled. Gostowski then clanged a FG attempt off the upright, keeping the score at 7-0.

    The teams then traded 3-and-outs before the '86 Pats finally got some offense going. They moved the ball to the '11's 30 yard line (key play: 26 yard pass to Irving Fryar on 3rd and 8), but on 4th and 2, Tony Franklin missed a 47 yard field goal attempt.

    On the ensuing drive, the '11 squad moved down the field effectively. The drive was a good mix of runs and passes and it culminated in a 20-yard TD pass from Brady to Hernandez, giving the '11 Pats a 14-0 lead. They clearly looked like the better team at this point.

    But the '86 Pats would come up with two huge plays to strike quickly. First, on 3rd and 6 from their own 28, and facing another 3-and-out, Tony Eason hit Stephen Starring for a big 44 yard gain deep down the sideline, setting the '86 squad up on the '11 Pats' 28 yard line. On the very next play, Eason hit Tony Collins on a swing pass that went for 28 yards and a score, cutting the lead to 14-7.

    The '11 Pats moved the ball well again on their next drive as the half was winding down. Brady hit Gronkowski with passes of 18 and 14 yards, getting them down to the 7 yard line before Brady missed on two TD attempts in the end zone. Gostowski's short field goal gave the '11 Pats a 17-7 lead with :52 seconds left in the half.

    But the '86 Pats had one last quick-strike drive in them to finish the half. From their own 28 yard line, Eason hit Greg Baty for a stunning 62-yard completion as Baty shed some tackles as he rumbled down to the '11 Pats' 10 yard line. Then, with 16 seconds left, Eason hit Fryar for a 9-yard TD pass to make it 17-14 at the half.

    The '11 Pats received the ball to start the 2nd half, and that's where disaster struck. Green-Ellis, on 1st and 10, coughed up the ball and the '86 Pats recovered on the '11 Pats' 37 yard line. On 2nd and 7 from the 34, Eason hit a streaking Stanley Morgan for a long TD, giving the '86 squad a 21-14 lead.

    Tom Brady gamely moved the '11 Pats down the field on their next possession, taking them to the '86 Pats' 33 yard line, but on 3rd and 12, he was intercepted by Ronnie Lippett, who returned the ball to the '11 Pats' 42 yard line. On 3rd and 12 from the 29 yard line, Collins fumbled but the '86 Pats recovered their own fumble, saving the drive. A few plays later Eason once again found Morgan for a 14-yard TD pass, making it 28-17.

    Reeling, the '11 Pats tried to regroup. Brady drove them down the field where they faced 3rd and 9 from the '86 Pats' 42. Steve Nelson then crashed through the line on a blitz and sacked Brady for a 6-yard loss, forcing a Mesko punt.

    After a couple of good runs, the '86 Pats had to punt again, and the '11 Pats took over at their own 18. Brady hit Ochocinco and Gronkowski for moderate gains and they moved the ball to the '86 Pats' 38 yard line. Facing 3rd and 3, Brady missed Branch over the middle, and they went for it on 4th and 3. Trying a bit of trickery, the Pats used a draw play to Faulk, who got stuffed for a 4-yard loss, giving the ball back to the '86 Pats.

    On the ensuing drive, James and Collins ran hard (Collins with a 28-yard run), and Eason hit Collins with a nice 12 yard screen pass. On 3rd and goal from the 14, Eason hit Morgan in the left corner for a TD to make the score 35-17 with just 4:28 left on the clock.

    The '11 Pats raced down the field as Brady hit Welker twice and Branch once. The drive culminated in a 7 yard TD run by Ridley to cut the lead to 35-24 with 2:49 left. They then held the '86 Pats and forced a punt.

    Starting at their own 35 with 1:57 to go, Brady again moved them downfield quickly. He hit Welker for 16, Branch for 11, and Gronkowski for 16, before hitting Welker in the end zone for a 3 yard TD pass with :10 left on the clock. The 2-point conversion (Ridley run) made it 35-32. They tried an onside kick, but the '86 Pats recovered to seal the game.

    Individual Stats:
    '86 Pats
    Eason: 11-14, 258 yds, 5 td, 0 int
    James: 12 rushes, 62 yds, 1 rec, 7 yds
    Collins: 10 rushes, 43 yds, 2 rec, 40 yds, 1 td
    Tatupu: 6 rushes, 18 yds
    Morgan: 4 rec, 70 yds, 3 td
    Fryar: 2 rec, 36 yds, 1 td
    Baty: 1 rec, 62 yds
    McGrew: 8 tackles
    Nelson: 3 tackles, 1 sack

    '11 Pats
    Brady: 25-36, 315 yds, 2 td, 1 int
    Green-Ellis: 17 rushes, 53 yds, 1 td
    Ridley: 8 rushes, 47 yds, 1 td
    Woodhead: 8 rushes, 47 yds
    Faulk: 5 rushes, 14 yds, 1 rec, 8 yds
    Welker: 9 rec, 82 yds, 1 td
    Ochocinco: 3 rec, 80 yds
    Gronkowski: 4 rec, 53 yds
    Branch: 5 rec, 50 yds
    Hernandez: 1 rec, 20 yds, 1 td
    Mayo: 6 tackles
    Ninkovich: 5 tackles, 1 sack

    The 1986 Patriots now move on to play the 2001 Patriots.
     
  3. brdmaverick

    brdmaverick In the Starting Line-Up

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    #32 Jersey

    Something tells me homefield advantage will not factor in too heavily since they have the same fan base. Most of the teams with home field played in Gillette Stadium.
     
  4. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Game 2: #9 1996 Pats at #8 1985 Pats

    '96 Pats: 10
    '85 Pats: 7

    Not a lot of action in this game as the 1996 Patriots beat the 1985 Patriots 10-7. The 1996 Patriots' defense was impressive, holding Tony Eason to just 8-23 passing for 96 yards.

    The '96 Pats got all their points in the 2nd quarter, as Bledsoe (18-28, 177 yds, 1 td) hit Troy Brown with a 1-yard TD pass. On the drive, the '96 Pats converted three huge 3rd down plays. On 3rd and 10 from their 35, Bledsoe hit Shawn Jefferson just past the sticks to keep the drive alive. Then, on 3rd and 12 from their 43, Bledsoe connected with Terry Glenn for a big 22-yard gain to the '85 Pats' 35 yard line. A few plays later, the '96 Pats faced 3rd and 9 from the 23, and Bledsoe once again found Jefferson, this time for 17 yards. Bledsoe later hit Brown for the score.

    Later in the quarter, Bledsoe hit Coates, Martin, and Glenn twice to set up Adam Vinatieri's 21-yard FG to give the '96 Pats a 10-0 lead.

    The '85 Pats came out strong in the 3rd quarter, moving the ball from their own 20 down to the '96 Pats' 2 yard line. The big play in the drive was a 34-yard Craig James run. James finished the drive off with a 2-yard run to make it 10-7.

    From there, neither team could do much. The '85 Pats did have a chance to tie the game, as they moved from their 45 down to the '96 Pats' 23. But Tony Franklin missed a 40-yard FG attempt. Later in the quarter, with less than 2 minutes to go, the '85 Pats again moved the ball, this time from their own 21 down to the '96 Pats' 38. The big play in this drive was a 17-yard connection between Eason and Irving Fryar. But Franklin's 55-yarder fell short, and the '96 Pats held on.

    Individual Stats
    '96 Pats
    Bledsoe: 18-28, 177 yds, 1 td, 0 int
    Martin: 22 rushes, 30 yds, 2 rec, 8 yds
    Meggett: 6 rushes, 13 yds
    Glenn: 6 rec, 67 yds
    Jefferson: 4 rec, 54 yds
    Coates: 2 rec, 28 yds
    Brown: 2 rec, 16 yds, 1 td
    T.Johnson: 4 tackles
    Slade: 3 tackles, 1 sack

    '85 Pats
    Eason: 8-23, 96 yds, 0 td, 1 int
    James: 16 rushes, 73 yds, 1 td, 1 rec, 10 yds
    Collins: 10 rushes, 24 yds, 1 rec, 13 yds
    Weathers: 3 rushes, 20 yds
    Fryar: 3 rec, 42 yds
    Ramsey: 3 rec, 31 yds

    The 1996 Patriots move on to play the #1 seeded 2004 Patriots.
     
  5. The Brandon Five

    The Brandon Five Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #75 Jersey

    Not to look to deeply into this because it is a simulation, but how did they keep the ball after a fumble on 3rd and 12? Did they convert on 4th and 12? Did they somehow advance the ball on the fumble?
     
  6. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Ah, great question. I have x'd out of that game page so it's unrecoverable!! I think it might have been 2nd and 12 actually. I don't think they went for it on 4th down. Sorry!!!!
     
  7. brdmaverick

    brdmaverick In the Starting Line-Up

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    #32 Jersey

    I like what you're doing and am interested in the results, but I do have to call into question this simulation program that is being used. After all, if a simulation program is to simulate a game using statistics, how could Benjarvis Green-Ellis fumble the ball?
     
  8. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Another good question. I have created, on my own, a kind of strat-o-matic (if you know what that is) dice baseball game. One of the issues comes up, for example, when you have a hitter with very little by way of stats in a particular category. Say you have a guy with 100 ab but zero homers. According to his stats, he can never hit a homer.

    But what if he's facing a pitcher that gives up a TON of homers.

    If you use the hitter's card only, he'll never get a homer. If you use the pitcher's card only, he'll likely give up a homer. My game uses hitters' cards in certain situations, and in others, the pitchers' cards. Maybe whatifsports.com runs their sim in a similar way. BJGE never fumbles, but maybe the team he is facing causes a LOT of fumbles. I bet if we ran the sim a bunch of times, BJGE isn't likely to fumble often at all, but this happened to be the one time he did.

    Bad luck!!
     
  9. brdmaverick

    brdmaverick In the Starting Line-Up

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    #32 Jersey

    Also, I'm going to predict the 2010 wins this tournament.

    Good, efficient offense (Brady, Welker, Hernandez, Gronk)

    Great Turnover differential (record low 10 giveaways)

    ..and even descent special teams (Brandon Tate)
     
  10. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Game 3: #11 1978 Pats at #6 1976 Pats

    '78 Pats: 27
    '76 Pats: 15

    Continuing the theme of "upsets", the 1978 Patriots beat the 1976 Patriots 27-15 in a game that featured a lots of rushing, a punt return for a TD, and a safety.

    The '76 Patriots exploded on the ground for 212 rushes on 37 carries (5.7 ypc), but couldn't do much in the air, as Steve Grogan (78) was just 10-21 for a mere 127 yards, 1 td, and 2 costly interceptions.

    The '78 Patriots also ran well (36-155), and their Steve Grogan fared better in the air, going 10-19 for 167 yards and a touchdown.

    After a scoreless first quarter, the '78 Pats struck first, with a long scoring drive culminating in a 36 yard field goal. On the drive, Grogan hit his tight ends for two big gains - one to Don Hasselbeck for 16 and the other to Russ Francis for 26.

    After a punt by the '76 Pats, the '78 Pats once again went down the field for a score. Grogan hit Francis for 14 and Stanley Morgan for 15, leading to a Sam Cunningham 2-yard TD run.

    On the ensuing possession, the '78 Pats forced a punt, and, after receiving it on the 21, the '78 Pats returned it 79 yards for a TD to make the score 17-0. The rout was on.

    Jon Smith made it 17-3 late in the 2nd quarter after he hit a 38 yard FG.

    In the 3rd quarter a strange sequence led to a safety for the '76 Patriots. The '76 Pats moved the ball downfield from their own 25, mixing in runs by Sam Cunningham and passes by Grogan. Facing a 3rd and 3 from the '78 Pats' 8 yard line, Grogan's pass was intercepted by Steve Nelson, who was tackled at the 2 yard line.

    One play later, Andy Johnson (no not Patsfans' Andy Johnson...at least, I don't think they're the same guy) was drilled in the backfield for a safety, making the score 17-5.

    The '76 Pats would hold on the next possession, and then took the ensuing punt and drove the ball downfield again, setting up John Smith's 38 yard FG to cut the lead to 17-8.

    They had a chance to cut the lead further at the start of the 4th quarter, facing 3rd and 3 from their own 40, but Johnson was stopped inches short of the first down. They went for it on 4th and inches, but Grogan was sacked by Dick Conn to turn the ball over to the '78 squad.

    The '78 Pats took over at the 37 of the '76 Pats. Andy Johnson (78) rumbled for 18 yards to set up a 37 yard field goal to make it 20-8.

    The '76 Pats got the ball back and picked up two first downs - one on a Grogan 12 yard scramble and the other on a 9-yard Cunningham run. But then, on 1st and 10 from the 45 of the '78 Pats, Grogan was intercepted by Mike Haynes. From there the '78 Pats marched on an 11-play, 67 yard drive, capped by a 9-yard TD pass to Russ Francis on 3rd down, with just 1:55 to go in the game.

    The '76 Pats cut the lead to 27-15 after moving down the field quickly, scoring on a Grogan-to-Johnson 14-yard pass, but it wasn't enough as the '78 Pats held on for the win.

    Individual Stats
    '78 Pats
    Grogan: 10-19, 167 yds, 1 td, 0 int, 5 rushes, 35 yds
    Johnson: 11 rushes, 52 yds
    Cunningham: 15 rushes, 45 yds, 1 td, 1 rec, 15 yds
    Ivory: 4 rushes, 22 yds
    Morgan: 3 rec, 61 yds
    Francis: 3 rec, 49 yds, 1 td
    Fox: 10 tackles
    Conn: 7 tackles, 1 sack
    Nelson: 3 tackles, 1 sack, 1 int
    Haynes, 5 tackles, 1 int

    '76 Pats
    Grogan: 10-21, 127 yds, 1 td, 2 int
    Cunningham: 18 rushes, 104 yds, 1 rec, 10 yds
    Johnson: 13 rushes, 92 yds, 2 rec, 25 yds, 1 td
    Francis: 3 rec, 43 yds
    Stingley: 2 rec, 32 yds
    Beaudoin: 8 tackles
    Fox: 7 tackles
    McCray: 4 tacles, 1 sack

    The 1978 Patriots move on to play the #3 seeded 2003 Patriots.
     
  11. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Well, they're off to a good start....

    Game 4: #10 2010 Pats at #7 2006 Pats

    '10 Pats: 31
    '06 Pats: 6

    The 2010 Patriots dominated the 2006 Patriots in the last first-round game of the all-time Patriots whatifsports tournament. The win meant that all four "underdogs" won in the first round.

    Tom Brady (10) had a tremendous performance, going 17-23 for 262 yds, 4 td, and 0 int, leading the 2010 Patriots to a decisive victory.

    The '10 Patriots got off to a good start, taking the opening kickoff 54 yards from their 20 to the '06 Pats' 26. The '10 Patriots converted three straight third-down plays on passes to Brandon Tate (8 yds), Wes Welker (18 yds), and Danny Woodhead (13 yds), before the drive stalled and Shayne Graham hit a 43-yard field goal.

    After an '06 Pats' punt, the '10 Pats struck quickly. Woodhead took a draw and sprinted 61 yards down to the '06 Pats' one-yard line, setting up a Brady-to-Aaron Hernandez one-yard strike for a 10-0 lead.

    Again, the '06 Pats couldn't move the ball, and the ensuing punt was returned all the way to the '06 Pats' 37 yard line. After a couple of runs by Benjarvus Green-Ellis netted 5 yards, Brady hit Welker in the slot and Welker outran the defense for a 32-yard touchdown and a 17-0 lead.

    The '06 Pats mustered one first down on a 10-yard run by Corey Dillon, but they were once again forced to punt. On the ensuing drive, which began at the 2010 Patriots' 24, the Pats began to march again. Green-Ellis ran for 6, and then Brady hit Rob Gronkowski for 40 yards down the middle, moving the ball to the '06 Pats' 30. On 3rd and 12, Brady connected with Welker for a 15 yard gain. Three plays later, Brady hit Gronkowski, who broke a few tackles on the way to an 11-yard TD, making it 24-0.

    The '06 Pats were helpless on offense, as the 2010 Patriots smothered them at every turn. After a first down scramble by Brady, they were once again forced to punt, and the '10 Pats took over at their own 21. Brady got the drive going with a 16 yard strike to Deion Branch. Green-Ellis rumbled for 8 more. A few plays later, on 3rd and 9 from the '06 Pats' 49, Brady hit a streaking Julian Edelman for 39 yards, all the way down to the '06 Pats' 10 yard line with just 1:50 to go in the half. With 1:35 left, on 2nd and goal, Brady connected with Branch for a 9 yard scoring strike, making it 31-0.

    There was enough time for the '06 Pats to finally muster some offense, as they moved the ball downfield and, as time expired in the 2nd quarter, Stephen Gostowski connected on a 39 yard field goal to end the half.

    In the second half, the '06 Pats once again drove down the field, aided by a big 33-yard run by Corey Dillon. But they had to settle for a short Gostowski field goal, cutting the lead to 31-6. That would be the last score of the day as the teams traded drives and punts the rest of the way.

    Individual Stats
    '10 Pats
    Brady: 17-23, 262 yds, 4 td, 0 int
    Woodhead: 7 rushes, 58 yds, 1 rec, 13 yds
    Green-Ellis: 14 rushes, 48 yards
    Faulk: 4 rushes, 21 yds
    Taylor: 7 rushes, 20 yds
    Welker: 5 rec, 80 yds, 1 td
    Gronkowski: 3 rec, 62 yds, 1 td
    Branch: 4 rec, 51 yds, 1 td
    Edelman: 1 rec, 3 yds
    Tate: 2 rec, 16 yds
    Hernandez: 1 rec, 1 yd, 1 td
    Mayo: 8 tackles
    Banta-Cain: 5 tackles, 1 sack
    Chung: 4 tackles, 1 sack

    '06 Pats
    Brady: 12-20, 122 yds, 0 td, 0 int
    Dillon: 11 rushes, 73 yds
    Maroney: 10 rushes, 52 yds
    Evans: 1 rush, 52 yds
    Caldwell: 3 rec, 34 yds
    Brown: 3 rec, 31 yds
    Watson: 2 rec, 25 yds
    Jackson: 1 rec, 16 yds
    Warren: 7 tackles, 1 sack
    Green: 6 tackes, 1 sack
    Bruschi: 5 tackles

    The 2010 Patriots move on to play the #3 seed 2007 Patriots.

    Here are the updated brackets:

    #12 (1986) def. #5 (2011), 35-32
    #9 (1996) def. #8 (1985), 10-7
    #11 (1978) def. #6 (1976), 27-15
    #10 (2010) def. #7 (2006), 31-6

    #12 (1986) at #4 (2001)
    #9 (1996) at #1 (2004)
    #11 (1978) at #3 (2003)
    #10 (2010) at #2 (2007)

    First round MVP: Tony Eason (1985): 11-14, 258 yds, 5 td, 0 int, in first round victory over 2011 Patriots.
     
  12. scott99

    scott99 In the Starting Line-Up

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    #87 Jersey

    [QUOTE
    First round MVP: Tony Eason (1985): 11-14, 258 yds, 5 td, 0 int, in first round victory over 2011 Patriots.[/QUOTE]

    This in itself takes away all credibility of this simulation. Eason couldn't do this in his prime, even with no defense on the field.
     
  13. brdmaverick

    brdmaverick In the Starting Line-Up

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    #32 Jersey

    Or if you look at the other way, it just goes to show how bad the 2011 defense really was. After all, we were giving up 300 yards consistently to "below average" QBs. I can't recall them giving up 5 TDs though.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2012
  14. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    This in itself takes away all credibility of this simulation. Eason couldn't do this in his prime, even with no defense on the field.[/QUOTE]

    You need to take a closer look at Tony Eason's career game log. He was better than most of us remember. My lasting thought of Eason was him turtling under the awesome Bear pass rush in the Super Bowl, but he was a pretty good quarterback.

    Here are some of his best games:

    9/30/84, vs NYJ: 28-42, 354 yds, 3 td, 0 int
    10/21/84, vs Mia: 19-29, 313 yds, 3 td, 0 int
    11/18/84, vs Ind: 29-42, 291 yds, 4 td, 0 int
    12/1/85, vs Ind: 20-28, 293 yds, 3 td, 1 int
    9/21/86, vs Sea: 26-45, 414 yds, 3 td, 0 int
    11/16/86, vs LARams: 36-52, 375 yds, 2 td, 2 int

    He was not Dan Marino, but he had some pretty big games from time to time. Look at his 1984 season:

    259-431 (60.1%), 3228 yds, 7.5 ypa, 23 td, 8 int, 93.4 rating, 122 rate+

    That's a tremendous season for 1984. That quarterback would easily have the ability to put up big numbers against the 2011 Patriots' pass defense.
     
  15. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Game 5: #12 1986 Pats at #4 2001 Pats

    '86 Pats: 30
    '01 Pats: 23

    The 1986 Patriots continued their surprising run in the all-time Patriots tournament, upsetting the #4 seeded 2001 Super Bowl champions.

    First round MVP Tony Eason continued his torrid play, going 16-21 for 315 yards, 3 td, and 0 int to spark the '86 squad. The '86 Pats dominated the stat sheet, outgaining the '01 Pats 450 to 311, and holding a six-and-a-half minute advantage in time of possession.

    The '01 Pats struck first, taking the opening kickoff and moving from their 11 yard line down to the '86 Pats' 32. The big play was a 37 yard wide receiver screen from Tom Brady to Troy Brown. Adam Vinatieri finished off the drive with a 49 yard field goal.

    The '01 Pats got a golden opportunity to increase the lead after Craig James fumbled on the '86 Pats' opening offensive play, and the '01 Pats recovered on the '86 Pats' 24. On the very next play, Brady hit Brown for a 24 yard TD, making the score 10-0.

    The '86 Pats needed a good drive and they got it on their next possession. Tony Collins and Craig James ran well, but two big passes by Tony Eason (a 41-yarder to Irving Fryar and a 15-yarder to Stanley Morgan) put the ball on the '01 Pats' 8 yard line. Eason then connected with James on a swing pass for an 8-yard TD strike to cut the lead to 10-7.

    The '86 Pats allowed two first downs but then held, forcing a punt by the '01 Pats. Taking over at their 21, the '86 Pats marched downfield again. Again, Eason connected with Fryar for a big gain, this time a 30-yarder on 3rd and 8 from the '86 Pats' 40. Eason capped the drive with a 24 yard pass to Greg Baty in the corner of the end zone to give the '86 Pats the 14-10 lead.

    After a 3-and-out by the '01 Pats, the '86 squad again moved downfield quickly. Eason hit Morgan for 23 and the '01 Pats had a big defensive holding penalty to keep the drive alive. Eventually, Tony Franklin nailed a 39-yard field goal to make it 17-10.

    After the teams exchanged possessions, the '01 Pats drove down the field in the waning moments of the half. The 70-yard drive, which featured passes from Brady to his tight ends Jermaine Wiggins and Rod Rutledge, culminated in a Brady-to-Kevin Faulk 3 yard TD score with just 0:26 left on the clock to tie the game at 17.

    But with just 23 seconds left, Eason hit Fryar for a 40-yard bomb down the sideline, setting up a Franklin field goal from 28 yards out as the gun sounded, giving the '86 Patriots a 20-17 edge going into halftime.

    The '86 Pats took the 2nd half kickoff and picked up right where they left off, shredding the '01 Pats' defense both on the ground and in the air. James ripped off a 19-yard run and Mosi Tatupu contributed a 24-yard run. Eason hit Baty for 19 and wrapped up the drive with a 19-yard pass to Morgan for the touchdown, giving the '86 Pats a 27-17 lead.

    Antowain Smith led the '01 Pats' ensuing drive, carrying the ball 4 times for 25 yards, and Brady completed two big passes, setting up Vinatieri's 39 yard field goal to cut the lead to seven.

    The '86 Pats upped the lead back to ten after a long drive led to a 39-yard Franklin field goal, making it 30-20.

    Needing a score, the '01 Pats took over with 12:03 left in the game and marched methodically down the field. A 14-play, 57-yard drive led to a 27-yard Vinatieri field goal, cutting the lead to 30-23, but that drive took nearly 7 minutes off the clock.

    Needing a stop, the '01 Pats couldn't get it, despite numerous opportunities to do so. On the first play, with 5:06 left, the '01 Pats stripped Tony Collins of the ball, but the '86 Pats recovered to keep the drive alive. Collins, James, Tatupu, and Robert Weathers all got carries as they converted key third downs. On one big 3rd and 22, with 2:22 left, Eason hit Stanley Morgan for 32 yards for the first down. Later, on 4th and 11 from the '01 Pats' 35 yard line, Weathers ripped off a 12-yard run on a draw. From there, the '86 Pats ran out the clock.

    Individual Stats
    1986 Patriots
    Eason: 16-21, 315 yds, 3 td, 0 int
    James: 14 rushes, 70 yds, 1 rec, 8 yds
    Collins: 13 rushes, 28 yds, 1 rec, 10 yds
    Tatupu: 6 rushes, 28 yds
    Fryar: 4 rec, 128 yds
    Morgan: 6 rec, 112 yds, 1 td
    Baty: 2 rec, 43 yds, 1 TD
    Sims: 5 tackles
    Blackmon: 4 tackles, 1 sack
    Lippett: 1 tackle, 1 int

    2001 Patriots
    Brady: 20-23, 236 yds, 2 td, 1 int
    Smith: 16 rushes, 57 yds
    Faulk: 4 rushes, 17 yds, 2 rec, 15 yds, 1 td
    Brown: 5 rec, 84 yds, 1 td
    Glenn: 3 rec, 52 yds
    Patten: 3 rec, 45 yds
    Law: 6 tackles
    Phifer: 6 tackles

    The 1986 Patriots now move on to the semifinals, where they will face either the #9 seeded 1996 squad or the #1 seeded 2004 squad.
     
  16. Palm Beach Pats Fan

    Palm Beach Pats Fan In the Starting Line-Up

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    #12 Jersey

    Your simulator may have to do some simulated drug testing.
     
  17. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Haha I know. Well, it's not "my" simulator. It's whatifsports.com, and they generally do a fantastic job of sports simulation. Of course, as you know, in a one-game situation all kinds of crazy things can happen. And Eason in 1986 was a pretty solid QB (especially for that era).
     
  18. NEP4Life

    NEP4Life Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    If the outcome of this simulation is Tony Eason averaging 4 passing TD's a game as he leads the 1986 Patriots to victory as the greatest Pats team of all time, I encourage you to have this thread deleted and ask the mods to lock your account. ;)
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
  19. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp In the Starting Line-Up

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    Heh. If it comes to that, I'll just repeat the simulation until Eason throws 3 int and the '86 Pats get crushed by the '07 Pats. :)
     
  20. brdmaverick

    brdmaverick In the Starting Line-Up

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    #32 Jersey


    Hey Look, Terry Glenn made a contribution!
     
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