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Patriots offense has become far too scheme heavy

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by tonyto3690, Feb 16, 2013.

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  1. tonyto3690

    tonyto3690 Banned

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    Brady has admitted himself that it's impossible for a rookie receiver to come in and contribute because the scheme is so complex. That was years ago and from how I see it, the scheme has only gotten more difficult to grasp. We've seen guys with good enough athleticism, route running and hands to be at least capable receivers completely flame out.

    However, one can make the very valid argument "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". Having the #3 offense of all time points in Belichicks favor. HOWEVER, as we saw in the Ravens game, the first 3 quarters of the Niners game, and so on, this team lives and dies by Brady playing perfectly. If he doesn't execute and throw perfect passes the entire game against a decent defense, we are completely cooked.

    In the AFCCG the closest thing we had to a matchup advantage was Hernandez who has shown all season once you hit him, he will drop everything. Without Gronk our team can't enforce it's will on anyone and just physically dominate a team like we saw in the dynasty years. Those offenses had Deion Branch as their best playmaker, yet we could just push people around and beat them up.

    Welker, Woodhead and 2013 Branch are not going to ever be able to do that.

    I think we've seen the staff be more cognizant of this the last few years with Vollmer, Solder, Gronk all beefing up the run game, but we still don't have an outside receiver who can dominate a corner on physical ability. Welker's role is not that and asking him to be that is too much for someone his size.

    For years I very forcefully denied the belief we need a big time receiver, and I still do to a degree. However we absolutely, positively need a guy who can "go up and get it" on the outside and get us big plays and easy points.

    Stolen from another forum, but does anyone find it funny that Belichick's defense is predicated on "don't give up the big play, make them grind out 5 first downs to score and let them make mistakes" and then on offense his philosophy appears to be "make Brady churn out first downs, make it as difficult as possible on Brady, and force Brady to play perfect for us to score". Obviously that's not how he would word it but that is what our offense has become. It's become "Brady needs to play perfect every snap of the entire game against any team that is even close to on par with us or we lose the game".

    The load needs to be taken off Brady. I saw Flacco close his eyes and throw up prayers at least 3 times in the SB. If that were Brady they would likely have turned into interceptions, but instead Boldin went up and got it and made Flacco look great.

    Some of the load needs to be taken off Brady on offense. Gronkowski healthy will certainly help, but instead of bringing in loads of smaller guys who can fit the scheme, we should pursue guys who are physically dominant and can play bigger than the scheme.

    EDIT:
    As a mild tangent as I'm sure Welker will be brought up:
    Welker's talent is high enough to override some of the things I've said. He's an elite receiver and saying we're better without him in a vaccuum is folly. However given the salary cap, his age, contract demands, etc. we are better off moving on from him and finding someone who maybe can't keep up with all the scheme complexities but can just physically dominant an opposing CB so it doesn't matter the scheme if he can just get open deep.
  2. eagle eye

    eagle eye Rookie

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    The Patriots had the no.1 offense in football this past regular season. If its not broken don't fix it imo.
  3. Brady_to_Moss

    Brady_to_Moss Revis Island is here PatsFans.com Supporter

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  4. DocHoliday

    DocHoliday Rookie

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    There is some (some) truth to this. Not a lot, but some:

    It's not the Patriots are too scheme heavy (it works, how is that 'too' scheme heavy?) it's just that when all the nice tricks clever plays disappear the team doesn't have tight margin hard nosed football in it. No big players to jump over coverage and no fast players to burn safeties.

    I've been thinking that the Patriots are probably covering flaws in their offense with these nifty schemes to great success, which allows them to spend high picks on defense and line players to 'rebuild' the foundation.

    It's not easy to win this game. If the Patriots had gone and taken a high round WR two years ago, the team would've had nobody to take over from Matt Light except gimpy Vollmer.

    If they had picked one last year, we would've had a hole at LB or even less pass rush than we had last year.

    People who complain about the Patriots not spending on glitzy offense picks with high picks don't realize the team would've been in an even worse spot had it not concentrated it's drafts on some of the fundamental building block positions we have today. Solder, Ridley, Jones, Hightower, McCourty, etc are all more important than a WR who may or may not have even worked out here.
  5. Claremonster

    Claremonster Banned

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    Someone similar to Boldin would help out a lot imo! Especially if Gronk goes down.

    It's possible to turn Gronk or Hernandez into more of that role, and put Ballard in the starting lineup. Of course Lloyd and Welker (or his replacement) have roles as well.
  6. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Why does it matter unless the refs want us to win?
  7. Claremonster

    Claremonster Banned

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    As far as scheme goes, there is some truth to it.

    The Pats defense needs to be upgraded and adding someone like a Boldin would be very hard to beat!
  8. andrewgarrr

    andrewgarrr Banned

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    People over-analyze the offensive struggles in the last two playoff losses.

    The reason is simple: Gronkowski was hurt...
  9. Claremonster

    Claremonster Banned

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    :D

    Very true! Kraft better pay the mob more $. Beeotch shoddy (Ravens owner) must have payed them a lot!
  10. Claremonster

    Claremonster Banned

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    And having someone like a Boldin to use in his place is the simple answer. :rolleyes:

    Who in the draft is most like Boldin?
  11. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    These universally good WRs cost more money and higher picks than the scheme fits. Where are you cutting resources in order to get better WRs?
  12. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Does anyone have a link on this? I recall a rookie QB stepping in as a WR for a couple of games and contributing.....
  13. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The Patriots won the 2011 AFCCG despite Brady having a horrible game, so this theory doesn't hold water.
  14. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Welker's a matchup advantage in every game he plays. As far as the AFCCG goes, Welker had 8 receptions (2nd on the team) and 117 yards (most on the team), while scoring the team's only TD
  15. fgssand

    fgssand PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Add to that the inability to keep brady clean going back to that miserable SB in the stinkin desert.

    When defenses play a certain style against our "O" - we are stooped cold, giants, ravens and jets (one time). Of course having a really good "D" as the giants and ravens did during those losses helped them.
  16. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Those defenses didn't play the same style.
    Since the game the Jets supposedly created the 'blueprint' we have scored 30,37,29,49 against them.
    If 'every time a team plays that style we are stopped cold' why did the Jets decided to stop playing that style so they could lose 4 straight and allow 36.3 ppg against us?
  17. Triumph

    Triumph Rookie

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    The Pats offense is broken vs good defenses.

    SF, Balt, Sea, NYG pretty much have their way with the NE offense.
  18. Brady2Moss

    Brady2Moss Rookie

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    This exact thread was made literally 2 weeks ago. Anyway I agree on Welker given the salary cap, but I'm softening up on that because I don't think the front office will go pay anyone 10 million outside of the system. Anyway I doubt the goal this offseason is to add a guy who doesn't play within the scheme. The goal is to find someone who can play within it and make plays in it.

    Goal this offseason should be to add play makers.
  19. Triumph

    Triumph Rookie

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    The Pats offense is too dependent on certain personnel. If Gronk is on pace for 17 TDs in a season and is hurt or is neutralized by the other team the Pats have nobody to make up for the loss.

    It never used to be that way.

    Defenses could take away Branch but they could not prevent the Pats from putting up points. In 2003, NE didnt have a 1000 yard Rusher, a 1000 yard Receiver or a player with double digit TDs. 2003 New England Patriots Statistics & Players - Pro-Football-Reference.com Injuries were never an excuse and as BB says " thats why you have a team."

    Mike Vrabel used to catch TD passes.
  20. DocHoliday

    DocHoliday Rookie

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    Everyone can try, only defenses with the right personnel can pull it off. And those defenses are usually pretty good.

    It is dependent on talent. See: 49ers, who had had decent coverage and amazing pressure up front until Justin Smith went down. And we all saw how far their D fell once Mankins gave him a boo boo.
  21. Deus Irae

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    In 2011, the Patriots had the lead with just minutes left in the Super Bowl. They reached that point without Lloyd and with a hobbled Gronk. What they needed to win a Super Bowl was one defensive stop, not an outside receiver.

    A middle-deep threat was needed, and Lloyd was brought in, but the Patriots aren't losing Super Bowls and AFCCGs because they're missing one player on offense or there's too much scheme. They're losing games because a combination of factors end up working against them.
  22. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    SF: 34 points last game, 30 the game prior
    Baltimore: Average 22 points last two years
    Seattle: 23, 24, and 30 points last three meetings
    NYG: Average 22.5 points since '07 season

    Isn't saying that teams do better against bad teams than they do against good teams stating the obvious? If the only game you look at are ones that a team lost, what exactly do you expect to find?
  23. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

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    To put it kindly, that's an incredibly misleading interpretation of the Patriots offense. New England was 9th in the NFL in average yards per pass play. They were also 7th in the league in the number of 20+ yard plays.
  24. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    Points per game scored by the Patriots' offense since 2001:

    2001: 39 - 13.0 avg (13 in the SB)
    2003: 71 - 23.7 avg (32 in the SB)
    2004: 78 - 26.0 avg (24 in the SB)
    2005: 41 - 20.5 avg
    2006: 81 - 27.0 avg
    2007: 66 - 22.0 avg (14 in the SB)
    2009: 14 - 14.0 avg
    2010: 21 - 21.0 avg
    2011: 85 - 28.3 avg (17 in the SB)
    2012: 54 - 27.0 avg

    So their playoff offense has had its highest scoring playoff runs in this order:

    2011 (28.3) - lost the SB
    2012 (27.0) - lost in AFCCG
    2006 (27.0) - lost in AFCCG
    2004 (26.0) - won SB
    2003 (23.7) - won SB
    2007 (22.0) - lost the SB
    2010 (21.0) - lost in divisional round
    2005 (20.5) - lost in divisional round
    2009 (14.0) - lost in wild card round
    2001 (13.0) - won SB

    So their 3 highest scoring playoff offenses (on a per-game basis) came in years where they did not win a Super Bowl. And their single worst scoring playoff offense came when they won their first Super Bowl.
  25. Brady2Moss

    Brady2Moss Rookie

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    This skews things a bit they hung up HUGE point numbers in 1 game and were basically inept in the other games (Baltimore 2011, Giants 2011, Baltimore 2012). Those teams had a LEGIT top 5 defense or top 10 this one is a bottom dweller without Talib and Jones. There's a lot of problems one is the lack of a real good outside receiver. There's tons of problems on the defensive side. It's a lot of problems like Deus said.
  26. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    I don't disagree with you at all. But the reality is that their first Super Bowl was won with a very lax offensive effort. I mean, 39 points scored by the offense in three games? They relied SO much on defense, special teams, and, frankly, good fortune, to accomplish that feat.

    I've argued numerous times on this board that what's largely separated the Pats from winning the SB and losing it has been the bounce of a football, and not really anything more than that.

    I just pointed out those numbers to show that it isn't like their offense during the SB-winning seasons was this unstoppable juggernaut.
  27. DocHoliday

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    You could also say the defense was good enough and the offense was at fault for not putting away the game earlier.

    Despite recent Super Bowl history most games do not come down to one last drive that defines the outcome.
  28. tonyto3690

    tonyto3690 Banned

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    I thought I explained pretty blatantly the plan is to replace Welker and use the resources we had in him with a guy who fits the scheme better. Weren't you the one harping how Welker was a poor fit for the scheme a couple years ago?

    Welker is an elite receiver but having three elite guys who thrive in the same portion of the field is a waste of resources. My theoretical plan is replace Welker with someone not as good as him overall but is better than him outside the numbers, has better breakaway speed (this qualifier is basically anyone in the NFL), and costs less. Then use the rest of that money on defense or depth on the OL.
  29. tonyto3690

    tonyto3690 Banned

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    Exactly. Just look at the Ravens. They scored over 30 in all of their playoff games IIRC. This is with Joe Flacco at the helm and Rice being the only player that comes close to the talent of Hernandez and Welker.

    The Patriots in SB42 had a devastating combination of injuries occur so I'll give them a pass, but this past SB we should have been able to overcome the singular injury to Gronkowski. In the dynasty years we were able to. That SB and this past year we were not able to. Why? Because no other skill player can physically dominate an opposing coverman. Givens, Thomas, etc. weren't fast or explosive, but were strong and reliable and new how to get open. Welker is great at getting separation but he's not very strong, and Hernandez is Finley-soft. Branch and Lloyd are both made of glass and could get tossed around by a 16 year old.
  30. RayClay

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    I think the scheme where gronk is healthy gets us two Super bowls. How many high scoring teams can overcome the loss of their "far and above" best receiver on offense? I think we need a speed receiver and maybe that would have offset the loss, but not losing your best player would work better.

    Lots of teams now are trying to employ a similar gronk, Hernandez offense and are only missing the ability to clone Gronk and Hernandez.

    The difference between this team and the championship teams is a defense in their prime, and that simply takes time, if you have the right players. In the mean time, we need to score to win and losing your best weapon makes the defenses job easier.
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