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Lack of TE play: scheme or personnel?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by PaulThePat, Jan 12, 2010.

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  1. PaulThePat

    PaulThePat On the Game Day Roster

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    Back in the day Bledsoe/Coates was a big part of the NE offence. Around the NFL you have the likes of Romo/Whitten and no doubt many other examples of QB/TE combos which feature heavily in a teams offence.

    My question is what is the reason for the Pat's lack of TE play:

    Scheme - The offensive scheme employed by BB simply doesn't feature TE's catching the ball.

    Personnel - BB and the offensive coaches don't trust the current TE's to get open and catch the ball.

    Which is it ?
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2010
  2. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Re: Lack of TE Play...Scheme or Personnel ?

    They were used in protection a lot, sometimes they didn't even get release into route at all.
     
  3. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Lack of TE Play...Scheme or Personnel ?

    Both.

    10 char.
     
  4. tanked_as_usual

    tanked_as_usual Banned

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    Re: Lack of TE play: scheme or personnel ?

    the scheme has never had the TE catching the ball all that much
     
  5. xmarkd400x

    xmarkd400x 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    Re: Lack of TE Play...Scheme or Personnel ?

    Signed.

    I think the scheme calls for more blocking by the TEs than normal, but I don't think they ever made BB say "Hey, we need to get this guy the ball".
     
  6. satz

    satz 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    Re: Lack of TE play: scheme or personnel ?

    Both

    -Never developing a right gaurd behind neal as he seemed a little banged up.Even time he or his backup is there the RT needs to help which mean you hold 2 TE in for help.

    -Light injuring means they kept 1 TE on his side for quite a few games to help vollmer.

    -Wes tremendous season and intial success means the offence evolved.You do what works and it was wes and moss.

    -Later Vollmer play dropped off the cliff and they now needed to protect him.

    -When RB other than faulk are in there they did not trust them on blitz pickup so hold a TE back.

    - Wes operates in the middle where a traditional TE operates in pass catching.In passing down WES is your TE.

    -RedZOne for a TE to be very effective and have good redzone offence you need to run the BALL. If you can run then the little hitch and zone plays to TE open up.We could not run so cannot really run these .

    I actually disagree with your statement of NO play. TE were very involved in all phases except pass catching .
     
  7. Moe

    Moe Rookie

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    The routes that Welker runs are typically in the same areas as what a TE would run. Even with that being said, I'm still surprised at the lack of production from the TE's
     
  8. xmarkd400x

    xmarkd400x 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    I think the lack of TE involvement is interesting. BB has characteristically liked TEs, because they can create matchup problems. Either you have an LB smaller than the TE, and you always run at the LB with that TE, or you have an LB who can't cover the TE, so you run passes at him.

    I think part of the Patriots demise this year is that every player is more or less one dimensional. They can rush, catch, or block. There aren't too many offensive skill players on this team who can do all 3 at a professional level. This makes the Patriots very easy to game plan for. You know BB isn't going to use Randy/Wes to EVER run the ball. You know BB isn't going to use LoMo or to block too much, or Morris as a pass-catcher. You know Kevin Faulk is a change of pass/third down back. And, you sure as hell know Brady isn't taking one step past the LOS.

    I think part of the failures of this year's team were the one-dimensional players. It is too easy to isolate them and attack their weaknesses (ala Vollmer in the playoffs).

    The TEs are a big part of this, because the diversity that they usually bring can allow for some subtle but important deception and matchup problems. This is why BB usually drafts TEs high in the draft.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2010
  9. BelizePats

    BelizePats Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    This is a really good question. I'd say it was more scheme oriented. And this underscores a problem with the offense as it was constituted in 2009. In today's game where passing has really come to dominate the league, it is a mistake to scheme away a vital cog in the aerial attack. Now it seems to me that they did this because they felt that they had to to help out the offensive line with pass protection. If this is the case, then OLine is clearly a problem and that this problem needs to be addressed in the 2010 draft!
     
  10. Fixit

    Fixit In the Starting Line-Up

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    Both, but I lean toward personnel, particularly Ben Watson. I think that he's the most frustrating guy I've ever rooted for.
     
  11. StraightCashHomey81

    StraightCashHomey81 Practice Squad Player

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    It's the personnel. Not since Wiggins have the Pats had a TE with any "feel" for the passing game. Graham, Watson, and Baker are all great blockers with superior physical skills but lack the ability to find soft spots in zone coverage. Many other TEs in the league run option routes, yet I cannot imagine trusting any of our TEs with such a task. This is the main reason I believe the Pats gave up on David Thomas way too soon.

    Furthermore, not since Fauria have we had a TE who was a capable Red Zone target. Watson is not tall, coordinated, or instinctive enough to use body positioning to be "open" while beeing seemingly covered. His only strength is using his 4.38 speed by running up the seam to draw a LB away from Welker's underneath routes. Fauria was great at being able to position his large frame to present an open target to the QB while having one or two guys on him in coverage. Unfortunatley he offered little else by the end of the 2004 season. Ben Coates was a master at this in his hayday.

    As much as I like Watson personally, I believe his days in NE should be over. The Pats need a TE capable of finding the holes in zone coverage quick enough to provide a safety valve for Brady. Bo Scaife would present an ideal middle-class free agent this offseason. I also wouldn't mind seeing the Patriots draft a TALL, athletic project TE who could contribute at least in goaline packages as a rookie. Miami's Jimmy Graham and Alabama's Collin Peek are two mid-round options, as of now, who would fit this bill.
     
  12. robertweathers

    robertweathers Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Excellent post. Could not agree more.
     
  13. PaulThePat

    PaulThePat On the Game Day Roster

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    Re: Lack of TE play: scheme or personnel ?

    Fair point. However, catching and being an attacking weapon was what I was really meaning. Think the Welker point is a good one. Whenever I see a team in 3rd and short I'm thinking a dump to the TE for the 1st. In our offence this is usually Welker who does seem to work in the TE part of the field. Maybe without Wes the TE's will be more involved.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2010
  14. Tunescribe

    Tunescribe PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I agree, I don't understand why he's never blossomed into a consistent threat. He was a first-round pick with size and speed. It's hard to swallow that we had two first-round busts at tight end (including Daniel Graham) still playing in the league, assuming Watson goes elsewhere.
     
  15. SeymourTrophies

    SeymourTrophies Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    Re: Lack of TE play: scheme or personnel ?

    If memory serves, this is exactly why Ben Coates skedaddled.
     
  16. KontradictioN

    KontradictioN Do you even lift? PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Scheme. When the offensive line is doing it's best impression of a strainer, it's always scheme. Watson is actually quite talented in the passing game. Unfortunately, protecting the franchise comes first and when you have receivers like Moss and Welker available to throw to, the tight ends are relegated to blocking.
     
  17. JSn

    JSn Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    When Watson leaves here for [Kansas City] he will become a top TE. And then we will know.
     
  18. dhamz

    dhamz In the Starting Line-Up

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    I once heard Russ Francis talking about Watson. He said for all his athletic measurables that Watson was slow off the ball at the snap and slow coming out of cuts and that he didn't shed jams well for a TE. He said that made him much easier to cover than you would expect if you simply looked at his size and speed on paper.
     
  19. robertweathers

    robertweathers Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Ben Watson will not be a top FA. You are kidding yourself if you think he is an elite TE. Hes a nice niche player- nothing more.
     
  20. JackBauer

    JackBauer Pro Bowl Player

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    I'm still wondering why we got rid of Dave Thomas.
     
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