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Improving a division winner

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by mgteich, Jan 14, 2010.

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  1. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    A casual reader might think that we went 6-10 this past season last season, instead of 10-6 (and might have gone 11-5 if we played our starters for all of the last game).
    ============================================
    The open question is how the division winning 10-6 NEP can maintain and improve as they go from this year to next, given that they have 4 draft picks in the first two rounds, and no cap or free agent restraints.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2010
  2. PowerRunRevival

    PowerRunRevival On the Game Day Roster

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    Love this thread title. I think the high expectation of a super bowl at the start of the year really has contributed to the "sky is falling" mentality among Pats fans after the Ravens loss, it is nice to see someone be positive.

    Next year we should be better in almost every phase of the game, provided we can keep Wilfork, Bodden, Watson and Faulk. If we can keep those four we are not losing anyone of consequence, and getting better in the draft and free agency. I expect Welker to be completely healthy and playing at the 09' level by the playoffs next year at the latest.

    We finished 10-6 with a team full of holes. Most of those holes should be filled next year by the draft free agency and the improvement of young players. If we can got 10-6 with a team with many problem areas what is to stop us when we solve those problems?
     
  3. Kulko

    Kulko Practice Squad Player

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    I think it has been said already in a lot of places, and just tends to get lost in all the hyperbole.
    Immediate Needs:
    A decent WR2
    one or two LBs to improve on run defense and pass rushing

    Mid Term Goals
    I think every part of a needs regurlar influx of fresh blood, but I think LB, OL, WR, DL should be favored.

    Coaching
    I would also try to hire an OC or DC from the outside who is willing to buy into the basic philosophy of BB but brings in fresh ideas and is not afraid to challenge the HC.

    Focus even more on fundamental training like tackling and blocking in the offseason. Tailored Gameplans only help when the fundamentals are in place.

    Run this first 10 plays of the baltimore game on a continous loop in the entry hall.
     
  4. Kulko

    Kulko Practice Squad Player

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    I love your enthusiasm, but holes are not that easy to fill in the NFL. For instance we are trying to fill that LB Hole since 2005 and while it is certainly better than in the halcyon days of the AFCCG we are still not where we want to be.

    NEvertheless I am confident, that we can fix more holes than naturla erosion can create, so we should be contending again.
     
  5. PowerRunRevival

    PowerRunRevival On the Game Day Roster

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    Exactly we don't need to fix all the holes because even championship teams have some holes, we just need to make sure that we fill in some of the holes part of the way.

    If we were 10-6 with the holes we have now who's to say that a new few new free agents and draftees don't make us 3 games better? That would make us 13-3 with a bye and a better chance of winning the super bowl.
     
  6. Tunescribe

    Tunescribe PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #61 Jersey

    I think the running game needs to be emphasized BIG TIME, on both sides of the ball. I'd like to see us draft a guard or two, a big fullback who can move the pile and a shifty speed back. We also need a kick returner. Otherwise, OLB, DE and WR are the obvious priorities.

    Keeping ahead of the Green Beans is key, so we need to beef up run offense and defense.
     
  7. Badluck

    Badluck On the Game Day Roster

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    Leadership on D
    as great as Mayo is i dont think hes the guy to get in people face and tell them what their job is. merriweather does not seem to be the guy. Thomas? lets move on
    i was really hoping a CBA could be worked out so we could grab merriman, i know some of you might not like that but he would bring an intensity and leadership to the team



    also how about a offensive coordinator that will commit to the run

    and an old brady that will spread the ball around and his favorite receiver was the open receiver
     
  8. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The players have indicated that the leader on the back of the defense is James Sanders. He calls signals and has been a leader.

     
  9. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Pioli used to talk about the player pool being more limited for this team because of the system requirements. I fear it has tightened exponentially in the wake of 2009. We need an infusion of talent, but we can't take any risks based on our leadership limitations.

    I wish we could get a couple of former players on board as coaches, but I fear the combination of salary increases over the last decade the the popularity of this team opening doors to secondary careers that are a lot more lucrative and less demanding, won't allow for much of that. We seem to have focus and intensity issues that need to be addressed before we find ourselves needing to change an entire culture again.

    There are only 4 guys left here who understand based on experience what it takes to win a championship here. Only one of them plays on defense. And only 1 dates back to the time we knew what a sub .500 season felt like. He can't babysit them all.

    I always figured the hardest thing to replace here would be the core. That's why I used to laugh at all those who preached about getting younger and faster as if that's all it ever entails. Always reminded me of those old adages like you can't coach speed or speed kills and youth is wasted on the young. Talent doesn't win championships in this league or we'd have less and teams like SD and Washington and even Indy would have some or more. Teams win championships, and it's the core that seperates paper contenders from those left standing in February. The core is what pulls a competitor through the rough spots in a season. Keeps teams from losing two or three in a row and allows them to go on a double digit run. Maybe we were victims of our own core success, since it was so strong here for so long no one felt they could or should or needed to step up and assume the role.

    I think you need to improve a division leader when it shows signs of struggle to just be that or it runs the risk of not even being able to be that going forward. People forget as well that the 2010 team won't be the 2009 team plus some more talent. The 2010 team is already minus some 2009 talent out of the gate. That has to be re-signed or replaced in addition to improved on. Bill has a famous old saying, if you're not getting better you're getting worse. Because every other team in the league is intent on getting better.
     
  10. FootballFan85

    FootballFan85 Banned

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    Whatever they do, the whole "Division winner" part shouldn't be taken for granted and sat on.

    The Sanchize is going to be in his second year next year, with a whole season and at least 2 playoff games under his belt. Remember, Peyton Manning threw a ton of picks his first year too and look at what he developed into. Imagine if Sanchez could get his picks down and get his game under control over the next few years.

    Imagine if Miami had a name-brand starter behind centre.

    The AFC east is not a weak division any more. I fear for the Bills next year I'll tell you that much. They'll be lucky to pull out one win against div. opponents.

    I think competition for that division title could be very stiff next season.
     
  11. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Sanders isn't a core leader. He's a signal caller. There is a difference. He wasn't even a starter for most of the season. Leaders don't have to be the highest paid or superstars or pro bowlers, but they have to be regular contributors with some status within the locker room. And they also have to have the persona to be taken seriously. Sanders isn't that guy. He's an onfield diagnostician and communicator. Leaders have to be able to get in a teamates grill and command their attention in the locker room, on the practice field, in meeting rooms and the weight room. And they have to be willing to do that consistently, not just when things appear to be unraveling. Whole different animal.
     
  12. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    As of NOW, I wouldn't think that we are favored to repeat. Still, the situation is the same. We ARE at the top of the division and need to improve to repeat and to expect to move deeper into the playoffs.
     
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