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Idle thoughts...the Bucs game

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by patfanken, Oct 26, 2009.

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  1. patfanken

    patfanken Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    this should be a shorter version of my usual diatribe. ;) This game was kind of an uneven effort. Its kind of hard to explain, but somehow this 35-7 effort left me feeling like I just ate Chinese food. The meal was good, but srangely left me feeling unsatisfied.

    1. The thing that REALLY jumped out to me was the speed of our secondary. I'm talking about closing speed. Even when the DL/LBs were creased by the Bucs running attack, what used to be 10-14 yd gains were cut short to 6-8 by a fast closing secondary. Compared to what we've seen for the past recently the comparison is startling. It was also good to see Pat Chung get some playing time. Between McGowan, Merriweather, and Chung, the Safety position is fast becoming a defensive strength on this team....and makes a very serviceable guy like James Sanders a bench warmer. That's not a bad thing.

    I like this secondary better EVERY GAME. Merriweather is becoming the big play guy the Pats hoped he'd be. McGowan has been a revelation, Butler is improving every game. Boddin has been like a rock, and Whilhite hasn't embarrassed himself either. Only Wheatly remains somewhat a disappointment.

    Even on the TD pass, Butler was in pretty good position (though he lost track of the ball). That TD was simply the product of a good route and a perfect pass...it happens

    2. Brady still hasn't regained his full form, though I don't have any doubts that he will get there by the end of the season. Like I said, the guy throws 3 TD passes and he left me wanting more. Go figure. :rolleyes

    3. Here's what has me disturbed about Brady. Remember back when he was having his best years. EVERY game by half time Brady had completed passes to 6 different guys. The ball was spread around. Now it seems like he looks to Moss or Welker or..... who?. That 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th guy hasn't been getting much play, and I wonder if its all the receivers fault. Its not like we have had a who's who of WRs here, and Brady STILL managed to spread the ball around. His seemingly total reliance on Moss and Welker worries me a bit...especially if one or both get hurt. We saw the results of not having Welker in the Jet game and it wasn't pretty. Also teams are going to start FORCING the Pats to look elsewhere, and I want to be ready...perhaps we will.

    He also doesn't yet seem quite comfortable in the pocket. Its not that he's less mobile, but in prior years, when he moved around in the pocket he was still able to maintain his focus down field better. Now he "seems" to have to REFOCUS when he moves and find his receivers all over again. Its only an extra second, but the D now has a better chance pressure him and react to the ball.

    Maybe its me, but there is a lot less of the drop back 3/5/or7 steps and release the ball in Rhythm, like we saw in 07. Maybe its Brady, or perhaps the loss of McDaniels. The receivers aren't getting as open, or open as quickly, or the timing is somehow JUST a little bit off. Or maybe I'm just asking too much too soon.

    4. It was good to see Tate in the line up. I'm surprised because I was certain we was going to be red shirted this season. He didn't do anything special, but he got a KO return, a pass and a run, and didn't embarrass himself in any of them. Welcome to the NFL Brandon.

    5. You know we are now very blessed with OTs. When Volmer went down, and Lavoir went in, there wasn't a drop off in play. For most teams having your 3rd string LT in the game would be a disaster. That being said, I was more impressed with Volmer's play today than in the snow vs the Titans. The results weren't as good, with the Penalties and all, but it was against faster people in better conditions. He is showing he can run with the big dogs, and will get better with more experience, but the fact remains...Matt Light is the best LT we have right now. We are fortunate to have Lavoir and Volmer in the wings.

    6. We didn't do much in the running game, though I thought Moroney ran very hard. Frankly it seemed like the Pats coaching staff decided that the Passing game was the way to go, and even though they were playing against something like the 26th rated run defense, the Passing attack was where we would make our biggest impression...despite the fact that we ended up being fairly balanced (60/40) balance.

    7. And Oh, I can't help myself. It was probably a good thing the they DID resign TBC. He had his best game of the season. :D

    Finally, I'm happy we got out of this scrimmage with a win. I'm hoping that Warren just has a sprain and will be back in a couple of weeks, and the same for Volmer. The NEXT month will give us a MUCH better idea of what kind of a team we have. It will be fun.
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  2. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    I'll give Wheatley some more time, after all he's fighting for playing time against some guys playing pretty darn well.
     
  3. Remix 6

    Remix 6 Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    Volmer was doing well until he started "hobbling to the line" and then it just went bad until he got taken out
     
  4. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    C'mon BOR, a little more insight please. :)
     
  5. Remix 6

    Remix 6 Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    he was picked in 2nd round. his expectation level was high and hes a healthy scratch =/
     
  6. shirtsleeve

    shirtsleeve In the Starting Line-Up

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    That has been my biggest concern re: Brady this season.

    Oh, and you are far too kind to the O line!

    Nice work ken. I always enjoy these.
     
  7. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    My Responses.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2009
  8. Box_O_Rocks

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    I try not to get too wrapped up in "expectations." Wilhite had the advantage of playing a full season while Wheatley was lost just as he began to grasp the defense. He came into this season at a disadvantage to the guys the team has playing ahead of him, only Butler was on the same basic level and I don't think any of us are going to complain about Butler playing before Wheatley. Like I said, I'm pleased with the CB depth this season.
     
  9. skri65

    skri65 Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    It's pretty amazing that, at this point, we are able to play our CB's based on matchups. We have four starter quality CB's, which means we are able to gameplan individual abilities instead of simply playing the best two or three. It's amazing what a single offseason can do for you.
     
  10. DarrylS

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    really like our D secondary, every week more experience.. suspect that by the end of the year, BB will be using these guys in very innovative ways.... they are fast, young and most are big hitters...

    Have not seen this much quality, depth and speed in a very long time...
     
  11. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    It's funny how the front 7 were our strength and now it's becoming our secondary. If we can get some beast linebackers who can rush the passer and collapse the pocket, we're looking at a top 3 defense in the next few seasons.
     
  12. tedylb

    tedylb Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    Great commentary, as usual, by Ken & the others. I do think there's some nitpicking on Brady. His timing may be a little off, but his is pocket presence is damn good. The Bucs pass rush wasn't bad, causing a few hurries, and only 1 sack (partially due to pretty good pass blocking).

    And can we argue, for the season, with 15 passing TD' s, 4 picks & a QB rating of 99.9 in 273 attempts? And yesterday he completed 73%.
     
  13. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    I was waiting for the drugs to kick in this early a.m. and noted thoughts on individual plays as they got my attention.

    14:19 1st Qtr, 2nd and 8: Bucs run Williams up the middle for a first down.
    Analysis: NE was in a 2-5 Nickel, "5" because McGowan was playing on the line outside Burgess who I'm also counting as a LB, but Burgess was down in a three-point stance. Warren slid over the Center and Wilfork was lined up as a 5-Tech over the LT. It's clear the Pats were playing pass and wanted a "speed" team on the field to contain the Buc's QB. Chung with an assist from Guyton. 9 yds.

    13:42 1Q, 1st and 10: Pass to Winslow in the left flat, pushed oob by McGowan.
    Analysis: This is the third play of the Bucs first drive and NE is again playing pass with a 4-2 Nickel. McGowan is man on Winslow, looks like a man-under, Cover Two with Guyton and Mayo spying the QB from shallow zones.

    The Pats stay in the 4-2N and stuff the run on the next play.

    For Meriweather's pick-6 the Pats were in the 1-4 Dime with Pryor on nose and TBC/Burgess as DEs. They blitzed Wilhite from the slot with Meriweather playing a loose man over the slot WR, which had the Buc's rookie QB automatically going to the blitzer's side without seeing the trap. He failed to read Meriweather creeping up before the snap to cover Wilhite's man, reading Bodden it looks like the Pats went to a Cover Three...either that or Bodden just let his man go after reading the QB's eyes.

    Sanders has looked good on the first two KRs.

    Jarvis Green got his butt handed to him on the first snap of the second Buc's drive, this allowed Williams to sail through the left side for a first down run.

    I'll tell you right now NE is not playing the run, they are daring the Bucs to run on them. 11:05 1Q, 2nd and 10: Pass to Williams running a wheel route for a 1st down. NE was in a 4-2N and blitzed Guyton while Mayo spied leaving no one to cover the RB. Nice hold to keep Guyton from the sack - it really was a nice sneaky grab, jerk, and release that went too fast for the ref to see from his angle.

    SF really missed out on how to use TBC, putzs.

    Pat's second offensive snap is a run to the right side, two TE's over there but Baker was driven back into the backfield disrupting the play.

    Adalius is primarily playing back on the defensive right side so far, that was his position last year.

    5:58 1Q, 2nd and 23: Bucs run a nice draw against a 3-4 front. Pryor is in at NT and doesn't force a double-team, which allows the Guards to stone Guyton and Mayo. TBC with a nice play to shed the TE before getting inside to make the tackle.

    Okay, that's as far as I got before I fell asleep...
     
  14. Spiral

    Spiral PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    I thought Pryor played an excellent game. He was getting some good push up the middle on pass plays, and just missed a couple of sacks. He looks like a steal.
     
  15. oldskool138

    oldskool138 In the Starting Line-Up

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    Well, Butler didn't even turn his head or raise his arms or anything to deflect or otherwise disrupt that play. It was embarrassing. I mean, when the guy you're covering looks back for the ball at least attempt to look at what he's looking at.
     
  16. Rob0729

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    This is more perception than reality. Right now the Pats have 6 players with more than 12 catches through 7 games. That means if this is held to form, they will have 6 players with 28 or more catches by the end of the season. In 2007, there were also 6 players with 28 or more catches. In 2006, there were 4. In 2005, there were 5. In 2004, there were 5. Granted this trend isn't likely to hold up since both Morris and Edelman are out for potentially extended periods of time.

    Yesterday, 6 different receivers caught balls from Brady and all but one caught two or more balls. Against Tennessee, 9 different receivers caught balls.

    Welker is on pace for 105 receptions for the season which would be his Patriots lowest granted he missed two games which would make it on track for his Patriots career average. Moss is on track for 98 receptions which would match his 2007 total.

    I don't see Brady being any different than in 2007 in terms of how much he relies on Moss and Welker. The biggest difference is that when he threw to Moss in triple coverage in 2007, Moss was more likely to come down with the ball than he has thus far this year. That is part on Brady and part on Moss (Moss has dropped several passes that he would have definitely made in 2007).
     
  17. patfanken

    patfanken Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Well thanks for the feed back. As you might guess, most of my thoughts are based on "impressions" rather than stats. I "sort of" feel better, but STILL.....I can't seem to shake that "impression" that Brady is focusing too much on just 2 of his options....and the league knows it. I'd really like to see Watson and Moroney figure more into the passing game.
     
  18. patfanken

    patfanken Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    Thanks Box, I hope you continue to give us more detailed analysis as this thread continues and you wake up. :D. I'd also like to know if you agree with me on the VASTLY improved speed of the secondary, especially in reacting to runs.

    In regard to the secondary, I hope no on sleeps on Ron Springs. There WILL be match ups where he will be important. I really think that BB might be saving him for the long haul and limiting his snaps early on. The development of Butler, Wilhite, and Chung make that pretty easy to do.

    Now if someone can figure out how to light a fire under Ron Brace, this draft will be a hundred percent home run. ;)
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2009
  19. JSn

    JSn Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Re: Idle thoughts....the Buc's game

    Ron Springs must be a secret weapon in the mould of Julian Endelman and Vince Wilfolk. I keep hearing about these guys but have never seen them on the field. :p

    The defense has a closing speed that allows the front to be a little less worried about the run, though that's still priority one. And as Pryor, Wright and Banta-Cain (who'd have EVER thought those would be your bigger names on D?) keep bringing the heat, along with Warren and Vince being great and even Burgess apparently making Bill happier than he makes PatsFans - yeah, this is becoming a playoff defense. The question is, can play settled down against Indy and New Orleans? I would say yes, we'll definitely be winning one of those games, maybe both.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2009
  20. Rob0729

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    Brady focused on those two options in 2007 too and it didn't stop him. In 2007, Moss and Welker made up 52.7% of the receptions by Brady. This year, they make up 49.7% of the receptions for Brady.

    Again, the only difference was several more of the balls Brady forced into Moss and Welker in 2007 were caught than this year. People forget all the times that Moss caught balls he should have never caught in double and triple coverage in 2007. There have been very few of those type of catches this year.
     
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