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Mike Reiss off the mark on McKenzie analysis

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by BradyManny, Aug 23, 2010.

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  1. BradyManny

    BradyManny Pro Bowl Player

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    Pats defensive snapshot vs. Falcons - New England Patriots Blog - ESPN Boston

    For two weeks, Mike Reiss has been killing on McKenzie for coming into the game after Fletcher (week 1) and Alexander (week 2).

    His analysis makes no sense - obviously, McKenzie plays a different position than those two guys. Fletcher and Alexander backup Mayo on the weakside. McKenzie backs up Spikes on the strongside. We've never heard of McKenzie taking any substantial reps at any position other than SILB at practice. Likewise, we've never heard of Fletcher/Alexander taking reps at positions other than WILB.

    They play different positions. I think users in his comment section have even pointed this out to him each week.

    The end result is he's trying to make a bold analysis (McKenzie could be cut b/c he's the 4th LB into the game) when the foundation for that analysis is way off. Reiss may be my favorite blogger, but its an amateurish mistake, and he's misleading his readers. If McKenzie is going to get cut, it's b/c they feel depth at Strongside Inside linebacker is good enough without him - Eric Alexander, Dane Fletcher, Jerod Mayo and anyone who mans the WILB spot have little to do with him.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2010
  2. betterthanthealternative

    betterthanthealternative In the Starting Line-Up

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    I think Reiss, and all of these new guys, just don't work very hard. Maybe its just because all the info is available to everyone all the time now, so nobody has to work hard. But they definitely seem to get lazy at times.
     
  3. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Reiss left McKenzie off his roster projection a week ago, too. That's his out-on-a-limb prediction and he's sticking to it. If he turns out to be right, we should all tip our caps to him. But if he turns out to be wrong...in a situation where it appears that only boneheaded misunderstanding could lead him to his conclusion...well.

    Personally, I see the extra time for Alexander & Fletcher as a reflection of Guyton's absence more than anything.
     
  4. 5 Rings for Brady!!

    5 Rings for Brady!! In the Starting Line-Up

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    McKenzie's roster spot looks much more tentative now than I thought originally, and it would not surprise me in the least if he is released. They just have other guys at other positions who add more value to the team, including probably Alexander. I think Reiss was right in pointing out McKenize's precarious position, and we will find out pretty soon anyway.
     
  5. patriot lifer

    patriot lifer 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    in the first preseason game when Mayo came out of the game who was it that lined up next to Spikes? I seem to think it was Fletcher, who I assume was playing WILB (ahead of McKenzie).

    Reiss wouldn't be coming out of left-field. Maybe some strange injury will befall one of our Inside LB's and they are placed on IR. :)
     
  6. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    This is bad analysis by Reiss IMO. Alexander and Fletcher are competing for a spot. McKenzie is going to be backing up Spikes. MAyo doesn't need as many reps as Spikes who will be starting as a rookie and needs the extra reps. McKenzie has played well when he has been in especially against the pass.

    HE is a lock IMO. I will be shocked if he were cut.
     
  7. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I made it a point to watch McKenzie during the 2 pre-season games and I have to say I was somewhat disappointed. I'm not sure where his fire was, but he didn't seem to me to have it like he did during the practices.

    But, I will say this. It's still early yet and there is plenty of improvement for this kid to make and I believe we'll be watching him the next few years.
     
  8. patriot lifer

    patriot lifer 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    we'll have to pay mind to whether or not McKenzie is playing on first-team special teams next game. Reiss will likely post something covering who is in the first unit.
     
  9. BlueThunder

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    I project 24 on offense and 26 on defense and 3 ST. Reiss' guess is as good as anyone's when it comes to McKenzie.

    WR-6
    OL-9
    TE-3
    QB-2
    RB-4

    BB could also go with only 8 OL and add an extra RB

    DL- 6
    LB- 10
    CB- 6
    S- 4

    ST: 3

    BB might also go with 5 CB and add an extra DL or LB but I think 6 may be his number.

    Some vets or second year players on bubble:

    Bussey,Wendell,Ohrnberger,BJGE,Slater,Richard,Alexander,Woods,Ninkovich,McKenzie,Murrell

    PS: Larsen.Welch,Myers,Deaderick,Fletcher,Brown,Robinson, +1
     
  10. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    McKenzie is PSquad eligible.
     
  11. DaBruinz

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    McKenzie won't make it through Waivers to get to the PS. Denver would snatch him in a heartbeat.
     
  12. Box_O_Rocks

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    Why Denver? Why would they snatch a guy who is still adapting to playing inside a 3-4?
     
  13. RussFrancis

    RussFrancis Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Reiss is a good reporter, so I wouldnt take any shots at him needlessly. But I think one of the problems with alot of reporting and reporters in general when it comes to actually analyzing positions, depth, performance, etc is that they never actually played any football. You can watch football all you want. You can cover it for years. But if youve never actually played it on any level, your expertise will always be somewhat limited. Not to say youre not qualified to write and report and entertain and sell stories, but your analysis as a reporter with zero actual experience should just be read with some degree of perspective. Having said all that, he's the best we've got on the Pats, and I appreciate pretty much all the stuff he writes.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2010
  14. BradyManny

    BradyManny Pro Bowl Player

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    I watched him rather closely as well - I wouldn't say I was disappointed, necessarily. He was rather inconsistent. He'd get off blocks on one play and get swallowed up on the next. But you can say that about anybody, really.

    Still, my point wasn't necessarily that McKenzie should or should not make the team. He may be a bubble guy, like Reiss suggests, but his reasoning is terribly flawed. McKenzie is not going to be on the field at the same time as Spikes, ever - they both play SILB, and neither really has the speed to backup Mayo at WILB. So to draw a conclusion from the fact that Alexander or Fletcher replaces Mayo when the 1's leave, and tie that conclusion to McKenzie, it's just asinine and really misleading to his blog readers.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2010
  15. AndyJohnson

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    A) McKenzie is making the team
    B) What order the 3rd or 4th LB enters a preseason game has little relevance
    C) Backup ILBs need to play both side. LILB and RILB...since we dont flip the LB there is no such position in our defense as SILB or WILB
     
  16. SEPatsFan

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    I know this part has been historically true, but my eyes (and others have reported seeing the same thing), tell me that Spikes and Mayo have been swapping sides fairly often presnap. Of course without knowledge of the defensive calls we have no idea why, but they have been doing it.

    SSDD
     
  17. bucky

    bucky 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    They've absolutely been flipping sides. Spikes has been playing the strong side next to Mayo. In the Atlanta game, you can even see them switching sides as the TE goes in motion.

    With regard to McKenzie, I actually think he's been fine in the first 2 games. Fletcher was clearly much worse in the 1st game and Alexander is what he is. The one part of McKenzie's game I've been disappointed with is his lack of participation on ST. If he was playing ST with the first unit, I'd say he's a lock for a roster spot. I would watch that more so that when he comes in to play LB to gauge his roster status.
     
  18. BradyManny

    BradyManny Pro Bowl Player

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    I'd strongly object to point C since I do see Mayo and Spikes switch sides depending upon where the strongside of the defense is. I'm rather certain we have a SILB and WILB, we've heard Belichick talk about these guys in terms of strongside and weakside as it is, so if he makes the distinction, we should, too.

    Not to mention its a moot point anyway - you don't want two slower, bigger, run-stuffing ILBs on the field at the same time in the 3-4 anyway. McKenzie backups Spikes; Alexander backs up Mayo - whether you call them LILB, SILB, or whatever, it's clear that the Patriots coaching staff are making a distinction between those two positions. And part of that distinction means McKenzie backs up Spikes.

    We clearly ask for two distinct ILB skillsets - quicker, lighter, faster & bigger, stouter, stronger. We're lucky Jerod Mayo is a freak and fits both, but McKenzie does not, so he's only lining up in one of the spots.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2010
  19. Box_O_Rocks

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    NE ILBs flipped sides all the time since one backer will usually have a tendency to line up on one side over the other. What AJ is referring to is the requirement for them to be formation ambidextrous since it may not be practical to flip around again once the offense starts motioning and shifting to create mismatches. Mayo, Guyton, Spikes, McKenzie, Alexander, Fletcher, and Williams all are trained to play both sides regardless of any personal tendencies to play one better than the other.
     
  20. crowell33

    crowell33 In the Starting Line-Up

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    Fletcher could also add value as a nickel pass rusher. Organized chaos.
     
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