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Patriots have the second oldest offensive line in the NFL

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  1. PATRIOTSFANINPA

    PATRIOTSFANINPA Rookie

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    Age and the OL - Why the 2010 Cowboys could be all sizzle, no steak - Bleeding Green Nation

    Interesting notes here is that only Jeff Saturday of the Colts is the only projected OL starter in the league over 34 years old.

    As we look into 2011,the RBs on the Pats aren't the only area that needs to get addressed for younger players.

    Without doing mathematics,I think Vollmer who is all but penciled in as a starter this season is probably what keeps NE from having the oldest OL over Dallas,but the age between oldest OL and mid pack is only a matter of a year or less in most cases.

    I think Larsen (if he makes the team) will be a start to next season of getting younger at the position as we go into 2011.
    Last edited: May 2, 2010
  2. pats1

    pats1 Moderator PatsFans.com Supporter

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    That's what happens when you draft a 26-year old (Kaczur)...
  3. pats1

    pats1 Moderator PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Larsen isn't exactly the first of his kind. He's currently joined by Ohrnberger, Bussey, and Welch and was preceded by Mike Elgin, Corey Hilliard, Clint Oldenburg, Dan Stevenson, and Ryan O'Callaghan, all of whom were Day 2 picks since 2005, when the Patriots first used a Light-Mankins-Koppen-Neal-Kaczur setup. So despite all of the action behind the starters, the starting situation hadn't been clouded at all (except for injuries) until Vollmer was drafted in Day 1. In fact, the most reliable backup OLs the Pats have had since 2005 were all free agent pickups - Hochstein, Connolly, LeVoir, and Britt.

    In other words, the starting situation won't change until the Pats make more Day 1 picks to replace their current starters. Vollmer so far has been the only one; some could say Larsen counts as a Day 1 pick because of the high grade he was apparently given by Belichick vis-a-vis the poor grades he gave the 2007 picks (Elgin, Hilliard, Oldenburg).
    Last edited: May 2, 2010
  4. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    Not a serious issue IMO, we'll likely re-sign Mankins, him and Vollmer along with the mediocre Kaczur give us 60% of the starters going forward and we have a slew of recent draftees who should be competent. Similar to saying Moss and Holt are the oldest pair of WR (if they are) but not mentioning that we've drafted young players with an eye towards replacing the old players when necessary.
  5. PATRIOTSFANINPA

    PATRIOTSFANINPA Rookie

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    Question is how many backups that we will have this season will be good enough next season to be starters if BB shakes up the OL a little.

    We know Mankins and Vollmer are the most likely players almost a lock for next season on the line...I would not bet on any of the others being there for certain.

    Pouncey would have been a nice addition,but we had so many needs this year other than OL that it was not going to happen in this years draft and we weren't going to trade up to get him anyway.
    Last edited: May 2, 2010
  6. KontradictioN

    KontradictioN Do you even lift? PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    Stephen Neal (33), Matt Light (31), and Dan Koppen (30) are the primary reasons for this. IMO, Neal is the only guy on the O-Line whose body was looking like it was beginning to break down due to age and injury last year. Light is still a very capable LT and will hold the spot for one more year while I expect Vollmer to take over at RT (then move to LT in 2011). Koppen is 30 and could be upgraded, but it isn't like he should hit the retirement home. 30 years old is still relatively young in this league. Mankins is only 28 and Vollmer is 25, in his second year in the league.
    Last edited: May 2, 2010
  7. pats1

    pats1 Moderator PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Why would you consider Kaczur part of the plan going forward if he is only a few months younger than Koppen and just over a year younger than Light?

    Kaczur will be 31 by the time training camp begins. He's a heck of a lot older than Vollmer and Mankins.
    Last edited: May 2, 2010
  8. KontradictioN

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    #24 Jersey

    Just a nitpick, but you shouldn't count Kaczur as a starter anymore. He was supplanted by the rookie Vollmer in the last few games of last season at RT (including our playoff loss to the Ravens).
  9. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    Both Koppen and Kaczur have a ton less wear and tear on their bodies than Neal who is the only truly old body on the OL. I don't expect Koppen to be gone any time soon but he's only signed through 2011 and would probably get more on the open market than Kaczur; if Koppen signed an extension I'd be fine with him too (I realize Kaczur is only signed a year longer). Bottom line, Neal is the only one whose body is really old IMO.
  10. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    I'm expecting Kaczur and Vollmer to be the starters this time next year as Light's contract expires at the end of this season. Not that I love Kaczur, but that's what I expect to happen.
  11. PATRIOTSFANINPA

    PATRIOTSFANINPA Rookie

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    With all the talk that we should have taken Dez and that he will be a star for Dallas will mean that Dallas's old OL better give Romo time to find him or it won't matter how much talent he has.
  12. PATRIOTSFANINPA

    PATRIOTSFANINPA Rookie

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    There are some here that want LeVoir in Kaczur's spot...I don't know about that.
  13. KontradictioN

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    #24 Jersey

    That's why I said it was a nitpick. This year, he doesn't look to be penciled in as a starter at RT and I don't expect him to be. The fact that he was pulled at the end of the season last year in favor of an extremely raw rookie who, a lot of times, required help from a TE speaks volumes about what BB and Dante thought of Kaczur. Neal leaving the line-up exposed his weaknesses just as much as they exposed Connolly's. The only difference is that Connolly was supposed to be a back-up (and we knew as much) while Kaczur was supposed to be a starter. I also find it funny that the only defense that anybody can come up with for him is that he signed an extension. WOW, what an Earth shattering defense! IMO, getting pulled from the starting line-up in favor of said rookie says more than signing an extension. Me? I sincerely hope that Kaczur is not the starter at RT in 2011. I like him as a back-up, though...
  14. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    I've never liked him that much, even when he was "ok" as a rookie that was just ok in the sense that he didn't totally suck, he wasn't actually good. Still, we've never had a great OL, just a decent, effective one. If Ohrnberger looks decent in camp this year, who knows but I guess they must have liked him for a reason, then a line going forward of Vollmer, Mankins, Koppen, Ohrnberger, Kaczur isn't wholly worse than what we've had over time. We may need a Guard where I have O penciled in.
  15. rodentstew

    rodentstew Rookie

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    If NE transitions to a more balanced offensive attack, the OL will be fine regardless of age. When you throw the ball 35 times a game, they'd better be able to hold their blocks and handle good edge rushers. Haven't we learned that by watching the difference between the Pats in the early 2000's vs 2007? A ball control offense makes an average OL good because their weaknesses aren't as exposed. ALL OL make a point that they enjoy run blocking more than pass blocking... that speaks volumes.

    The drafting of two TEs gives me hope that we'll see a more consistent use of the run game and play action. Please!

    OLine is fine. More rush attempts + more play action + short to intermediate passing attack = Brady protected + fresher defense. If my memory doesn't fail me, it also meant three SB victories.
  16. Sciz

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    What I love about Kaczur is that he can backup RT, LT, and presumably RG. I don't want him starting, but he's an ideal #3 OT.

    As for the OL as a whole, we've seen a big chance at LB and DB, so it's probably time to go back to the lines in next year's draft. As much as everyone wants a WR, I'm guessing those 2 firsts will be used on a DE and a OG.
  17. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    The stud WR is nice but for young "receivers" we have Tate, Price, Edelman, Welker (still young enough to be part of the plan going forward), Hernandez and Gronkowski. Unless the young guys really bomb out I don't see a top 15 pick being used on a WR.
  18. RayClay

    RayClay Rookie

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    #75 Jersey

    Kaczur has mostly avoided the wear and tear of blocking pass rushers, so he's fresh.:rolleyes:
  19. spacecrime

    spacecrime Rookie

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    So we need to get rid of our starting line and find guys who are a year younger at each position?

    I find it hard to get worked up over the fact that the average OLine is a year younger than ours, particularly if that average is low because they are starting rookies.

    But I guess when the sky refuses to fall year after year, desperation sets in and you'll take anything you can.

    Either we are starting unproven youngsters who have proven nothing and we desperately need veteran players, or we are too old and need to get younger.

    Anyway, shouldn't the goal be to be the best at what you do, not the youngest?
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  20. patsinthesnow

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    #87 Jersey

    I agree with the goal being the best over age. Our O-Line is good, but not what other fanbases thing it's amazing.

    However, we aren't the best at what we could be at RB.
  21. spacecrime

    spacecrime Rookie

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    Did you even read the article you linked? You are acting like an old oline cannot block as well as a young oline.

    Read the article as see what good it does to get younger at Oline.

    Here are the five youngest Olines in the league in order of age according the the article you linked:

    1. 49ers
    2 Broncos
    3. Rams
    4. Panthers
    5 Texans

    How many of those young olines were in the playoffs?

    Becasue when I look at the oldest Olines, I see teams like the Cowboys, Patriots, Packers, Giants, Saints and Vikings. Yeah, the Lions are in there too, but those other teams are all powerhouses. Who ever wrote that article is an idiot. His own data disputes his conclusion.
  22. bucky

    bucky Rookie

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    You said it yourself right there. Take out Neal and replace him with a 23 year old, and the entire OL gets 2 years younger - which puts us right in the middle of the pack. So this is really a non-issue. Age-wise, Light, Kaczur, and Koppen have at least 2 years left. Skill-wise, is an entirely different topic.
  23. TommyBrady12

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    #12 Jersey

    i say we use next year's pick from the raiders on a OL.
  24. supafly

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    #24 Jersey

    I will respectfully disagree here. We've had back to back years of top 10 rushing attacks with a RB by committee system. Last year I believe we were 9th, and in 2008 I think we were actually 5th. (you may want to double check, I haven't verified and am going off the top of my head)

    It may not be that exciting of a position to watch, but I don't think having an early rd pick would've made that much of a difference.

    I'm not sure BB cares whether or not we have 1 main RB, or a RBBC system, especially if we're putting up good numbers like the past 2 seasons. IIRC, wasn't 2008 one of our franchise's best running attacks? That's pretty good considering there's been 50 yrs of comparisons.

    I'm sure next yr we'll take a top 3 rd RB + maybe add another solid vet at the position, but as far as actual need, you can't fault a system that allows fresh players to rotate at a good cost/value. Not only that, but come playoff time, you're guaranteed a solid and fresh back for a stretch run.

    As long as you're getting approx. 4 yds/ave per carry, I don't really care if they're young/old, well known/no name, etc. Plus it's good for injury concerns and gives us obvious depth.
  25. spacecrime

    spacecrime Rookie

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    The above is meaningless. Everybody knows Maroney sucks and the Pats can't run the ball. Why do you insist on continually posting facts when emotional over-reaction is obviously what is called for.
  26. livinginthe past

    livinginthe past Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    Agreed.

    I think its reasonable to conclude that any RB in the NFL would do a better job. ;)
    Last edited: May 3, 2010
  27. Box_O_Rocks

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    Please check the injury reports for those games, you are using erroneous data to reach your conclusion.
  28. SanAngeloState

    SanAngeloState Banned

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    There are two problems, one is Koppen getting blown up, not able to hold his block for more than a millisecond. The other is speed rushers turnstiling light and kaczur.

    A related problem is play calling so obvious that the defense can literally call the play, the audible, and the hole it's going to.
  29. Bostonian1962

    Bostonian1962 Rookie

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    No biggie! They have two of the best young talents there (Mankins and Sea Bass), who will be joined by draft picks at center/guard, and tackle. I love the mix of youth and experience, to be honest.
  30. PatsFanSince74

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    Interesting stats. Not sure what they mean since, as other posters have noted, there is a lot of noise in the data for every team.

    If you look at the 12 teams that made the playoffs last year, five are in the top quartile (top eight) of oldest OL's, including the eventual champion Saints.

    Only two teams that made the Playoffs were in the bottom (youngest) quartile: Chargers and Ravens. So, experience seems to count for something.

    Interestingly enough, the Colts are almost square in the middle at #14.

    In the glass half/full half/empty department, the Jets at 18 are either too young or will just keep getting better. :D
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