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Jake Ballard - Difference Maker Next Year

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by RI Patriots fan, Jan 27, 2013.

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  1. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    I truly believe that having that 3rd TE who can be a receiving threat will make a world of difference next season. Assuming he heals up, I think Ballard will help make our TE line-up the best of all time.

    Ballard is big and strong and isn't afraid to put his head down to gain more yards. Although he isn't fast, he has the ability to run decent routes to get open. I think Brady will love the way he catches the ball.....running catches, diving catches, and he's never fumbled the ball.

    Here's his youtube video and I have a feeling some of his catches might bring back some bad memories. But just remember....he's playing for the good guys now. :D


    Jake Ballard Highlights - YouTube
  2. PatriotsInGA

    PatriotsInGA Rookie

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    I can already see the dream formation next season. Brady under center, Ridley in the backfield, Gronk and Ballard on the ends of the line, and Welker and Hernandez spread wide.

    This offense will be one of the best of all-time next season.
  3. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I just hope he doesn't get a chance to be too much of a difference maker, if you know what I mean.
  4. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    It hasn't taken long for endofseasonitis to take hold has it?
  5. SammyBlueCat

    SammyBlueCat Rookie

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    If his knee has healed and and plays like he did during the highlight video, he will save some wear & tear on Gronk.
  6. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    The offense was one of the best of all-time *this* season.
  7. Get it shawtaay

    Get it shawtaay Rookie

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    Based on what? Points and yards? Between the Seattle, Arizona, and Baltimore games, I find that statement very hard to agree with.
  8. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Third most points in a season
  9. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    Points scored.
    Yards gained.
    3rd down conversion rate.
    DVOA.

    What metric do you want to use? Pretty much by any measure they were one of the best offenses of all time.

    The 2007 Patriots were *the* best offense of all time, and yet they had plenty of games where they didn't produce a ton of points:

    20 points in week 15 vs. the Jets
    21 points in the AFCCG vs. the Chargers
    14 points in the Super Bowl vs. the Giants

    In those three games, the highest scoring offense in history averaged 18.3 ppg. In the three games you mentioned above, the 2012 Patriots averaged 18.0 ppg.

    So I fail to see your point.
  10. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Heck, if he keeps GRONK off STs. . . . :eek:
  11. TommyBrady12

    TommyBrady12 Rookie

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    the players who are on the field have to execute better. it doesn't matter who the personell is if they don't do their job. would jake ballard have made a difference this year against the ravens? no, the team as a whole didn't play well. brady was missing passes, welker dropping balls, bad coaching, etc. so all this talk of getting revis, signing bowe, or inserting ballard into the lineup is pointless unless the team executes in a way it hasn't in the past 8 years. in big games these guys simply don't want to rise up and meet the challenge - they play tight and timid.
  12. Ive_Killed_People

    Ive_Killed_People Rookie

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  13. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Rookie

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    lol yeah that would be nice. if only we could take back that meaningless extra point injury.

    ballard gives us depth that we need. shiancoe and fells have done nothing even with opportunities shown their way.
  14. SacPete1

    SacPete1 Rookie

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    I am so on board with the thought have another TE who is a good blocker and a decent receiver which really fits Ballard. If healthy, I see a new formation with he and Gronk along with Hernandez (WR = Lloyd) which would offer simply another formation/player grouping that would require a heavy defense.
    Blocking from our TE's with Gronk out of the lineup was average at best and was really evident in the Baltimore game.
  15. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Fells was supposed to back up Gronk and was a disappointment this year. Ballard if healthy will fill that role nicely, Hooman will be the backup for AH. The TE position will be very solid going forward.
  16. DarrylStingley

    DarrylStingley Rookie

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    Yep. I don't see Ballard being a huge difference maker but having a solid third TE in this offense, and really more of a classic TE than Hernandez, will be nothing but positive.

    If he's in fact a huge plus for the Pats offense, the pain and aggravation that it will cause Tom Coughlin and Giants fans will be nothing but glorious. Never ending pleasure. Sportsgasm. :rocker:
  17. DocHoliday

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    He's huge but so damn slow.

    He's literally an O-lineman running around the field. Interesting to note that some scouts said he could be an offensive lineman.
  18. Fencer

    Fencer Rookie

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    If he were THAT good, wouldn't he still be a Giant?
  19. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    For reasons I cannot understand, the Giants put him on IR too early in the offseason, which required them to expose him to waivers first. [IR still counts as one of the 90 roster spots, so it wouldn't have given them a roster spot.]

    And dangling a TE with 38 catches for 600 yards was just begging Belichick to put in a waiver claim.
  20. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    I think some posters are underestimating just how good Ballard is as a TE. He had more yards (604 versus 563,546) and a better YPC average (15.9 versus 13.0,12.5) than both Gronk and Hern his first year.

    Our TEs also missed a combined 11 games last year, so that means we didn't have a second quality TE for most of the season.

    If you include the Cardinals game and the playoff loss to Baltimore (since Gron and Hern were both out at the very beginning of each game) 4 out of our 5 losses have come when either Gronk or Hern weren't playing. The one loss we have when they were both playin was in Seattle with a less than healthy Hern.

    I think having a number 1 TE (and yes, he is clearly a number 1 TE) like Ballard to back up Gronk and Hern will make a huge difference next year on the offense. The odds are very likely that both TEs will not be healthy all 16 games (Hern has missed 10 games in 3 seasons).

    I really believe that we will see the greatest TE line-up of all time next year and I believe it will make all the difference.
  21. shmessy

    shmessy Maude Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013
  22. tonyto3690

    tonyto3690 Banned

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    Sciz, you should already know that the future of the offense is the jumbo-spread.

    Ballard will be on the field for no less than 85% of snaps next year.



    --
    I don't actually believe that the number will be that high, but I expect him to see a lot of time next year. Belichick loves the 3 TE sets with Solder/Crumpler. The problem was that neither of those players were capable receivers which Ballard is. Obviously not Rob Gronkowski, but he's an underrated pass catcher.

    Also while Hernandez is a better player, Ballard fits the scheme better.
  23. TommyBrady12

    TommyBrady12 Rookie

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    Nice analysis but ballard is coming off an ACL. He won't be the same until
    2014.
  24. HowardRoark

    HowardRoark Rookie

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    Easy there Debbie Downer. Welker was very productive his season back from ACL injury, which happened the end of the season before. Ballard was the end of last season.
  25. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    The fact is we don't know how he will be in 2013. Players heal at different rates. Look how quickly Welker healed.

    We know for a fact that Ballard was operated on in February of last year. So by the time training camp comes around the end of July, it will be 17 months since that operation....18 months when the season starts.

    Even on the long end, assuming things have gone well, he should be able to make a difference on the field. Besides, it's not like he was "The Flash" anyways. He had some decent quickness in turns and could make great catches. As long as he can make those turns in his routes, I see him being a big difference maker.
  26. DarrylStingley

    DarrylStingley Rookie

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    Yup. It's hard to say that Ballard will be fully healthy and will be on the field for 85% of the plays (as someone said up thread). Even if healthy, he's still the third TE and it's not as if the third TE ever gets on the field THAT much.

    But this guy could be a very nice piece and hedge against injury risk.

    And his play could make NY Giants fans vomit.

    And I hate this sports week so I need good thoughts like these to distract me.

    And Bernard Pollard should have very bad things happen to him.
  27. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    Injury issues aside, next year the Patriots will have three TEs on the roster who have all had very productive years since 2010.

    Gronk (every year in the league he's been tremendous)
    Hernandez (2011 - 79 rec, 910 yds, 7 td)
    Ballard (2011 - 38 rec, 604 yds, 4 td)

    They can rotate the three guys and not lose a whole lot with any combination. It'll keep them fresh and reduce the risk of injury. And then, since Gronk and Ballard both block like linemen, they can go with a jumbo package of Gronk and Ballard, and then, with them isolated on run-stuffing LBs, split them out wide and they'll have one-on-one matchups. Nice. :)
  28. TommyBrady12

    TommyBrady12 Rookie

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    Welker was NOT 100% when he got back, yes he was productive but he was clearly not the same until 2011. Just compare his 2010 numbers with his 2011 stats.
  29. RI Patriots fan

    RI Patriots fan Rookie

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    Yeah, but again, Welker was back the next season after he was hurt. Ballard won't be coming back until the following year (2nd season after he was hurt). Plus Welker relies almost exclusively on quickness to get open, while Ballard uses his size and his strength as well.
  30. Ochmed Jones

    Ochmed Jones Rookie

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    Given Gronkowski's inability to stay healthy this past season, having Ballard to pick up the ST snaps and hopefully contribute in the base offense is a huge boost for us.

    Keeping Grnkowski healthy and fresher come playoff time could be the missing puzzle piece for our offense.
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