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My '10 draft wish: stop drafting STer's!

Discussion in 'Patriots Draft Talk' started by jeffbiologist, Jan 3, 2010.

  1. jeffbiologist

    jeffbiologist Rookie

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    There are a few teams that seem to continually draft and develop LBs and defensive players into playmakers(Pitts/Balt)... and they almost never draft STers! Special teams is a place for those players who are not only backups but development players. The past few years we have DRAFTED STers and still our ST is below league average. In a day where the difference between keeping a guy and letting him go to free agency can cripple a team, why not use those last 3-4 spots on the roster to build depth instead of becoming overly specialized? I am not saying that special teams arent important(or as important), but that the long term well being of the team and the roster would be better served using every spot to maximize VALUE spots on the field, not the number of plays each player is on the field for. Making plays takes a special type of player, we need more of them on this team.
  2. BillBelichickFan79

    BillBelichickFan79 Rookie

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    the only guy we recently drafted specifically for ST is slater if im not mistaken. as for developing lb's mayo and guyton arent too shabby. mckenzie and crable both are on ir so thats not bb's fault.

    as for balt and pitt, i assume you're talking olb. we're never really going to have a harrison woodley or suggs with double digit sack totals. willie mac and vrabel had like one double digit sack season each with us. the system we play doesnt produce an elite lb numbers-wise. we play more coverage while those guy blitz a lot more.
  3. DaBruinz

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

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    Reviewing the Steelers and Ravens previous drafts, I found the following regarding "STers" over the past 3 years.

    Steelers:
    Daniel Sepulveda

    Ravens:
    Yamon Figurs
    Ladarius Webb

    The Pats only drafted ONE pure special teams player in the last 3 years. That was Matt Slater. Yes, if you go back 4 years, you'll pick up Gostkowski and 5 years to pick up Willie Andrews. So, that kind of debunks the idea that the Steelers and Ravens don't draft special teamers.


    Going to NFL.com, here is what I found about the Pats Special Teams.

    1) Kick Offs - The Pats rank 6th in the league with 85 kick offs. They rank 4th in the league at 67.7 Yards per kick off. They are 8th in the league in Touch Backs. Now, they are 8th worst in returns allowed at 24.1 YPR. However, they've allowed NO Kick Returns for TDs. The Steelers are 15th in the league with 74 kick offs with an average of just 60 (59.96) yards per kick-off. They have the fewest TBs with 2 (not a good thing). They've given up 68 returns for an average of 25.1 YPR and 4 KRs for TDs. The Ravens are 9th in the league with 80 kick offs. The Ravens are 19th in the league with 64.2 yards per kick, and are 31st in the league in TBs. The Ravens are 5th in the league in Kick Return Yards allowed at 20.5

    2) Punts - They have the 3rd fewest punts in the league with 53. They've had 7 punts OOBs and 6 punts downed. They've had 16 punts inside the 20 (30%) and 16 punts that resulted in fair catches. They've had 19 of 53 punts returned ( 35.8%) for 149 yards (7.84 YPR). They've also not allowed a punt return for TD. The Ravens have punted 68 times and the Steelers have punted 70 times. The Ravens have had 7 punts go OOBs and 9 punts downed. The Steelers have had 2 punts downed and 15 go OOB. The Ravens have had 25 Punts go inside the 20 (29.4%) while the Steelers have had 25 (35.7%). The Ravens have had 36 returns (52.9%) for 280 yards ( 7.78 YPR) and the Steelers have had 32 returns (45.7%) for 322 yards (10 YPR).

    3) Kick Returns - The Patriots have had the 3rd FEWEST Kick returns in the league at 48. They've gotten 1072 kick return yards for an average of 22.3 YPR (16th in the league) . The long has been 52 yards. They've had 34 returns of 20+ yards.. They've not had a kick return for a TD. It should be noted that, due to injuries and shuffling on the return unit, the Pats have used 7 different returners. Only Maroney and Edelman have more than 10 returns.. The Ravens are 2nd in kick returns (25.6 YPR) and the Steelers are 11th (23.8). The difference? Both teams have only 1 Returner with more than 30 returns. The next closest returner has less than 10.

    4) Punt Returns - The Pats are tied for 9th in the league with 38 punt returns and 18 Fair Catches . They have 432 Punt Return Yards, good for an 11.4 YPR average and 5th best in the league. The Steelers have had 34 Punt returns ( good for 16th) and the Ravens have had 37 (good for 12th). The Steelers are 20th with 7.3 YPR and the Ravens are 23rd with 6.9 YPR.

    Now, looking at this, the only area that it seems to me that the Patriots are lacking is on kick returns. Otherwise, they are better than the Steelers and Ravens. Can they improve in ALL areas, of course they can. But you acting like the Pats just stink on special teams is ridiculous. The primary area they could use improvement is kick coverage. But kick coverage is also the area where they've had the most turnover. Plus, the new "anti-wedge" rules are so poorly enforced that teams that do it per the rules are actually penalized.

    So, all in all, the Pats Special Teams are better than you think, The Ravens and Steelers Special Teams are worse than you think and both teams draft Special Teamers, though you don't want to admit it.
  4. FreeTedWilliams

    FreeTedWilliams pfadmins PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The Pats drafted a long snapper in last year....

    Slater was suppose to be a Kick returner, he is lucky that he has emereged as a gunner or he would be out of the league by now.
  5. Ochmed Jones

    Ochmed Jones Rookie

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    I would like to see the Pats draft and develop a nice cold weather punter.
  6. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    A good punter in any weather would be nice.
  7. Ochmed Jones

    Ochmed Jones Rookie

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    Very true, but BB does prefer veterans at this position.
  8. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Ingram, Slater and Gostkowski have all been good contributors drafted in the second half of the draft, why would anyone complain about that? :confused: Even Willie Andrews returned good value for a 7th-rounder until his character meltdown. The ONLY draft pick I can think of in the past 5 years who might fit the description of overdrafting for ST is Bo Ruud.

    Jeffbiologist, time to name names. You say the Patriots are wasting 3-4 roster spots on drafted ST-only players, spots that should have gone to 3-4 late-round developmental position players. Who?
  9. jeffbiologist

    jeffbiologist Rookie

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    As much as I aint a squealer, OK. Guys like Alexander, Ruud, and Slater of course. And there is always the "extra value" of guys that played ST in college that hardly ever pan out(Wheatley, Chung,etc). Now I understand the value and need for players at the end of the roster like Ventrone(fa) and Andrews(7th)--Andrews returned a kick for a TD. But how many years now have we complained about our depth at LB yet Woods and Alexander stick around? Cant we find younger players to play ST and LEARN to START?? Dont give me the IR excuse, every year there are LBs and DBs all over it. When they play on defense dont you think they are STers playing defense instead of the other way around?? Now I gotta figure maybe its the coaching that doesnt really want to spend the time developing players....with 1 exception. Dante on the OL takes the time and develops HIS players almost like a team within a team. I just dont see the dedication to development, maybe that has alot to do with the continuing coaching changes, who knows. Sorry for the ramble....
  10. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Except Alexander wasn't drafted and Ruud isn't on the team. You said there are 3-4 roster spots wasted on these guys, and that we've been routinely DRAFTING them (caps are yours, not mine) the past few years. Slater's the only potential example, and every team carries a gunner.
  11. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Find me one statement from the Patriots that says they drafted Slater with the specific view of having him return kicks.
  12. DaBruinz

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

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    Damn, I forgot about Ingram.
  13. DaBruinz

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

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    #50 Jersey

    I disagree about Slater being out of the league. At one point, he was ahead of Tate and behind only Maroney in terms of Yards per return..

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