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How About the Oline??!!

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by RIpats88, Jan 15, 2012.

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  1. RIpats88

    RIpats88 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    all the talk about the pats offense/defense...but I think the unsung hero was the Oline...they kept brady standing the whole night mostly and it gave him time to be who he is...tom brady.

    a main difference between our last 2 first round exits and last night was that in the previous 2 the o-line had horrible games and consistently let the opposing team get to Brady which disrupted our offense.

    the Denver D-line is no joke, and the pats basically made them a non-factor....and if the O-line can play that way against the Ravens and keep brady standing I like our chances...I dont see the ravens stopping our TE's

    ive said it before, with all the talk about our defense/offense....the real key to getting to the superbowl is the Offensive line...if you keep brady standing, he will CARVE up ANY defense..but thats the key...keep him standing
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2012
  2. PATSYLICIOUS

    PATSYLICIOUS Pro Bowl Player

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    #12 Jersey

    This is without Vollmer too. Beastly performance, best I've seen since maybe the Jville divisional game in '07. Thing is though if they have a bad game in the next game or two this will all be forgotten like that one.
     
  3. The_Riddler

    The_Riddler 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    Nate Solder and Brian Waters have changed everything for this OLine.
     
  4. randomk1

    randomk1 In the Starting Line-Up

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    #12 Jersey

    Can't forget Connoly stepping in at center. Pretty impressive all things considered. Dude is like a swiss army knife for us. LG/C/RG all in one.
     
  5. Bostonian1962

    Bostonian1962 In the Starting Line-Up

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    I could not agree more. I can't remember a better game by the big guys up front. They literally did not even sniff Brady. It was amazing.

    Brady and the boys seem like they are on a mission. A month ago we heard that Denver is the only team Brady has a losing record against, and he/they blow them out twice. Brady has a deep hatred for Baltimore based many on one loud mouth defensive player of theirs, and of course Houston beat us in the Welker injury game. Pats should be focused and fired up no matter who they play next.
     
  6. patsfaninpa

    patsfaninpa In the Starting Line-Up

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    OL play will be the key to beating Baltimore. If they can block the Ravens front, Pats receivers will beat their secondary.
     
  7. Patriot Missile

    Patriot Missile Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #75 Jersey

    Best unit of the game last night. Brian Waters reminds me of Ted Washington in regards to impact signings. Imo it's a shame Solder doesn't get more run to ROY. He certainly is playing a seasoned veteran.

    To be honest I want Vollmer back but there is no doubt Solder should be the starter imo. To bring someone in who has played so little would not be wise. Rust is my biggest concern as well as continuity and we have that right now with what is on the field.

    It's nice to have Connelly back. Who would of ever thought he'd be such a good center? Wonder how he will match up against Ngata if Baltimore wins today?
     
  8. shmessy

    shmessy Maude Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #75 Jersey

    1) Everyone is talking (rightfully so) about the great pass protection last night, but how about 30 runs for 146 yards???? Against a pretty good defense???

    2) We should have Vollmer back and Mankins closer to 100% next week (with 8 days until the next game). The depth and quality on this line is perhaps the best we've ever had at playoff time. Hell, I have no qualms about our backups - - Wendell, Cannon, Thomas or Vollmer/Solder.

    3) We all love "Kope", but am I being sacreligious in saying I prefer Connolly at this point? Koppen was smaller and many here were complaining in recent years of him getting pushed around more and more. Connolly is a load and has shown tremendous nastiness. Obviously Brady loves Koppen's intelligence and ability to call out the plays for the line, but Connolly has been terrific at Center in my opinion.
     
  9. buile

    buile PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    No Jersey Selected

    To me, O-Line is key. I thought it pretty clear from last night's game that Brady proves ~again~ that you cannot give him time.

    That fact isn't lost on Baltimore, for sure. My feeling is the AFC Championship will be decided by O-Line performance, and how Brady/Receivers hook up in the face of blitzes.
     
  10. buile

    buile PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    No Jersey Selected

    I thought we should have drafted a center this year (to get someone ready to replace Koppen in the future). Glad to see I was wrong: Connolly was able to fill the gap. However, who is the long-term replacement?
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2012
  11. patsfaninpa

    patsfaninpa In the Starting Line-Up

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    Connolly just turned 29. Surely, he can play 3-5 years if you think he's the man for the job. He's a UFA along with Koppen. Will probably come down to one or the other. Wendell already signed as a backup.
     
  12. PatriotFan77

    PatriotFan77 Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    Most games are decided by O-Line performance.
     
  13. NEGoldenAge

    NEGoldenAge Banned

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    I believe that can be said about most of the O-line. Light and Koppen aren't versatile, but the rest of the O-line is.
     
  14. zipster9

    zipster9 Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Light & Solder did very well..

    Connelly playing better than Koppen (when he was the center)..

    I'm sure Pats will be draft a rookie Center (Konz?) for more depth.

    BTW - need to re-sign Light 1-2yrs?
     
  15. NEGoldenAge

    NEGoldenAge Banned

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    Absolutely. Although he did have a couple of rough games, the rest of the season he was excellent and even dominated against some elite speed rushers, something he was never known for. If this wasn't Light's best year, it was very close.
     
  16. MaineMan

    MaineMan 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    Connolly has, indeed, been excellent in passpro. However, Koppen's run-blocking up the gut is still significantly superior, IMO. Runs between the guards had been the main focus and success of the Pats ground game for years, accounting for 55%-60% of rush attempts, underscored by BGE's performance last season. This season, up the gut rush attempts are down to 44%. Some of that dropoff might be attributable to Waters at RG and/or to BGE's nagging foot injury (though, last season, even Woody had more runs and more success up the middle). But the loss of Koppen shouldn't casually be ignored as a possibly significant factor, at least.

    Which brings up a potentially difficult problem wrt off-season personnel decisions. Koppen and Connolly are both UFA for 2012.

    Koppen's 2011 cap hit was around $4.4M (sixth highest in the league for centers). He missed this season on IR and will turn 33 in mid-September. Can't be sure how much (if any) hometown discount Koppen would be willing to accept for a 1-2 year renewal.

    Connolly's cap hit was around $1.3M, which is not bad for a center, but actually on the low side for a quality starting OG. For a player who's shown he can handle BOTH starting jobs, I don't think it's unreasonable to speculate that a team with a shaky or older interior OL may offer him as much as $3.5M-$4.0M and that the Pats would likely have to match or beat that to keep him.

    I'd be mildly surprised if the Pats kept them both.
     
  17. JR4

    JR4 In the Starting Line-up PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I agree with this.

    The Oline is superb. I think it may be the best in the league.
    As someone said, if the Oline can keep Brady clean, no team will
    stop the PATS.
     
  18. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Everyone is signed for 2012 except Connolly and Koppen. Since both Connolly should get starting pay, I suspect that we will keep only one of them. It is just possible that Koppen might be willing to stay as a backup, but I suspect not.

    STARTERS: Light, Mankins, Connolly (or Koppen), Waters, Solder/Vollmer
    (with Solder as 3rd TE when Vollmer is healthy).

    BACKUPS: Thomas, Cannon, Wendell, McDonald

    BOTTOM LINE
    1) We have one of the very best OL in the league.
    2) We have found our center to replace Koppen; his name is Dan Connolly.
    3) We need to re-sign Connolly (alternative is to re-sign Koppen)
    ==========================

    Sure, we'll draft another OL or two for Dante to develop, but there is no draft need.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2012
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