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Offseason Upgrades as we wait until 8:30

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by mgteich, Sep 10, 2009.

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  1. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The most obvious upgrades are the returning players who were on injured last year: Brady, Thomas and Maroney. Let's also look at ADDITIONAL upgrades to the various units.

    =================================================================
    OFFENSE BOTTOM LINE
    Major improvements with the return of Brady and Maroney, and the additions of Taylor, Baker and Matthews.

    Backup QB
    not much change from O'Connell to Hoyer, although an upgrade should be coming in next week.

    RUNNING BACK
    Taylor is again, but we have no fullback.

    WIDE RECEIVER
    Galloway and Edleman for Gaffney should be a wash

    TIGHT END
    upgrade at starter with Baker
    upgrade at #3 blocking back with Matthews

    OFFENSIVE LINE BACKUPS
    This should be an upgrade when LeVoir is back with the additions of Simmons and Vollmer.
    ==============================================================

    DEFENSE
    The defense has changed. The question is whether we will better overall, and especially on 3rd down and in the red zone.

    DEFENSIVE LINE
    The base unit has had a significant downgrade. Wright or Green will start in place of Seymour. The passing unit should be improved with addition of Burgess and Banta-Cain, but that doesn't make up for the loss of Seymour.

    LINEBACKERS
    This is a downgrade from last year. Guyton/Alexander 2009 may or may be equal to Bruschi/Guyton of 2008. Woods (with help from Banta-Cain) 2009 may or may not be an upgrade over Vrabel 2008. Obviously, the return of Thomas will offset some of the loss.

    SAFETIES
    I believe that McGowan and Chung will upgrade the contribution from this position as backups and special teamers.

    CORNER
    This is the critical upgrade that must make up from the losses of Seymour and Vrabel. And it certainly could do so. Bodden and Springs major, major upgrades over Hobbs and O'Neal. Wilhite has learned a lot and is better than any nickel we had last year. And we could get some contributions from Butler and Wheatley, or not.

    SPECIALISTS
    Ingram should be an adequate replacement for our snow angel.

    SPECIAL TEAMS
    The defensive units should be as good as last year. There will be some downgrade at kick returner. I like Maroney, but he isn't as good a returner as Hobbs.
  2. JSn

    JSn Rookie

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    Why not mention Pryor and Brace?

    I recognize they are unknown quantities, but they COULD be big-time additions to this team even by mid-season. Maybe even Pryor more-so than Brace, if news of teams calling the Pats about him is accurate.
  3. BradyFTW!

    BradyFTW! PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #12 Jersey

    Are you talking about improvement over the end of last year or the beginning of last year? Because if it's the end, then our LBs, safeties, QB, OLB, tight end, CB and RB will all be improved. If it's versus the beginning of last year, then we won't be improved in much of anything except tight end and CB.
  4. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #11 Jersey

    I agree with most of your post, but this bit confused me. Every change is described as "may or may not be equal/better." What's the loss and downgrade, then?
  5. robertweathers

    robertweathers Rookie

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    Jsn has a very good point. Anytime you add 2 guys to your D-line who are both over 320 lbs ea and 6-1 and 6-3 respectfully, that can only help the run D.

    Losing Sey for the 09 season is a significant loss no question.
  6. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I don't expect the two rookies to have much of an impact. Even Warren didn't ahve much oif an impact in his first year. If they were forced to start, that might be a different story, but in that case the likely downgrade would be much higher.

  7. Fencer

    Fencer Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    You're falling into the fallacy of comparing season-beginning health this year with mid-season health last.
  8. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I believe that we will be weaker at least one of the linebacker positions that are changing and at best equal at both. I do believe that the most likely occurrence is us to be weakened in both comparisons somewhat offset by Thomas.

    COMPARISON 1 Woods/Banta-Cain in place of 2008 Vrabel
    COMPARISON 2 Guyton/Alexander in place of 2008 Bruschi/Guyton


  9. TheComeback

    TheComeback Rookie

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    Alexander isn't going to get playing time on defense. It's going to be Mayo and Guyton. If they're running a 4-3, it's possible Woods will play on 1st down, and Guyton on 2nd and 3rd.

    Woods/Guyton gives us a lot more speed than Bruschi/Guyton. Bruschi was a much better downhill linebacker than Woods is, unfortunately. Guyton is ridiculously fast for a man his size. I thought he looked excellent in the preseason, and could surprise a lot of people this year. He may be a great asset to have on the blitz. He's already shown us what he could be capable of in coverage (I am remembering that nice pass deflection Guyton made against the Jets on 2nd & 15 before our D blew it on the next play).

    I'm not sure if our linebacker corps is much worse off than last year. Vrabel was great against the run, but definitely showed his age (and possible injury) blitzing the passer. Woods has flashed the ability to get around the ball, but he needs to finish his plays. I hope he also surprises people, but I am not nearly as high on him as I am on Guyton. I see Belichick's faith in Woods as one of his few mistakes, but I hopefully the Pats prove me wrong.
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