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Reflections On Our Day Of Rest

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by mgteich, Nov 4, 2012.

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  1. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    OFFENSE

    1. This may be the best offense the nfl has ever seen. If you think that this is hype, compare this team to 2007. Hopefully, we will add Hernandez and Shiancoe to our active top producers soon.

    2. We have run a lot of 3 wide receiver sets with Hernandez out. Branch and Edelman haven't done much.

    3. The running game is the best of the Belichick era. 200 yards games and 2 100 yard rushers in one game are simply unheard of on a Brady-led offense. We just need to keep 3 running backs healthy.

    4. We quietly red-shirted Salas as a future young prospect, paying him over $450K for being on the Practice Squad.

    5. Dante is a genius. We can keep on saying Wendell and Thomas have little talent. This wears a bit thin. The OL has been great. We'll be even better with Mankins back.

    6. Fells and Hooman have been good additions. We badly needed a backup TE last year; we also needed a blocking TE. These guys have done both well, in addition to filling the role of fullback. That being said, Gronkowski is the key, and plays almost all the reps, even while injured.

    7. The wide receiver situation is still a mess for 2013. We have Lloyd, Slater and Salas as signed players.

    8. We like to make believe that offense is set for 2013. That is certainly true if we re-sign or replace our our current players with players of equal or greater value: Welker, Edelman, Branch, Vollmer, Thomas, Woodhead.

    9. The offense seems to lack a killer instinct. Perhaps they are simply coasting into the playoffs. Playing the jets even was a wake up call; they're awful. Unfortunately, it is hard to turn on enthusiasm.
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2012
  2. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Reflections On Our Day Of Rest - Defense

    DEFENSE - FRONT SEVEN

    1. This defense is much better than 2011.

    2. The run defense has been truly amazing.

    3. Ninkovich has been the key, playing well as a starter at both DE and LB.

    4. Cunningham has been the only depth player to get many reps. He's done very well. 44% of the reps on a DL makes him a rotation/role player, rather than strictly depth.

    5. Francis seems a good find for the future, replacing Brace.

    6. Jones and Hightower have been great.

    7. Scott and Bequette have not contributed. This is fine, given the renewal of Cunningham and the contributions from Jones and Hightower. Scott is there and could used if needed. Of course, we hope that there is no need.

    8. We are very thin at linebacker. This is not a new issue. This is a risk Belichick took going into the season.The only viable backup is Ninkovich who must shift from DE. That works between games, but then there are no game day backups on Game Day at LB except for special teamers.

    9. The linebackers have not been very effective in coverage. Spikes has improved, but he is really slow.

    10. The pass "defense" has been about the same as 2011. Curiously, that is good news since it will get better as more players are healthy. The MASH unit is large. A lot depends on the trainers and the players ability to rehab fully.

    11. Out Dowling. In Dennard. I'm fine with that. We expected much from Dowling and no so much from Dennard.

    12. Arrington is the latest player the fans hate. Belichick seems to somewhat disagree; he still gets lots of reps. In any case, he has been demoted in the depth chart.

    13. McCourty is our best defensive back. The issue is where to play him.

    14. Kudos to Cole. He is a fine special teamer. He also in a solid dime and nickel back.

    15. Talib is the new player on the block, with no knowledge of our defense. We'll see if he can produce before he is suspended again.

    16. Wilson has made the most of his opportunities, given the injuries to Chung and Gregory. He still has a lot to learn.

    17. Chung has NOT regressed. He is solid on run defense, poor on pass defense, and solid on special teams. This has been his MO since he arrived. There is nothing wrong with having Chung as a starter.

    18. Gregory's injury has masked the fact that this was a solid addition, not needed much since Wilson has been so good. If he comes back healthy, Gregory should be in the mix as one of our 3 safeties for the next couple of years. He certainly is a solid #3 safety. Consider going into 2013 with McCourty, Wilson and Gregory as our safety rotation. Compare this to what we had in 2011.

    19. Clearly, the cornerback situation is a mess for 2012 and 2013, especially with McCourty moved to safety. That being said, Talib and Cole are the patches for 2012, added to Dennard and Arrington. I expect Moore to be back when eh is healthy, as our #5 corner and #9 defensive back.

    20. Roster-wise, we have added Talib and Williams and lost Dowling and Moore. Obviously, Talib is a much upgrade over Dowling. Williams is NOT an upgrade over Moore, except to the degree Moore is injured. Moore is a kid, a prospect. He has shown a lot more than a lot of prospects with his age and nfl experience.
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2012
  3. MoneyFX

    MoneyFX Rookie

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    In response to #9, I think it's the red zone offense in particular that has struuggled this year. The TEs aren't healthy and everybody knows that they are Brady's favorite targets in the redzone. Until the Rams game, the offense struggled late in the redzone. The games they lost and the Jets/Broncos games, they struggled to put the ball in the endzone late. Once the TEs get healthy, they will produce more in the redzone and the leads won't shrink in the 4th as they have earlier in the year. But it also could be predictable playcalling but idk.

    Lloyd hasn't been the dominant outside threat that he was in 2010, but he showed flashes and has produced well this year, better than Branch/Ocho last year. Once Brady and Lloyd get fully on the same page, Lloyd will be hauling in long balls consistently. In terms of WRs, think of Hernandez like another WR. Like James Casey for the Texans, he goes all over the field a la H-Back. This offense will be even better when he and Lloyd are producing along with the rest.
  4. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    "This may be the best offense the NFL has ever seen". A couple of thoughts:

    1. This offense is just starting to click. It's been struggling with injuries, new personnel, and inconsistency. We have a new OC, a new WR who is still getting his sea legs, our best offensive skill player is getting cortisone injections and playing in severe pain, our (tie) second best offense skill player has missed most of the season, 2 of our RBs have missed significant time (Vereen and Bolden), our 10 year starting LT retired, our All Pro starting RT has been recovering from back surgery, our starting RG de facto retired and his replacement has missed time, our Pro Bowl LG is coming off an ACL injury and is clearly still hobbled, and we've had to plug in 2nd and 3rd string options at various line spots, not to mention injuries to multiple backup/role players on offense (Fells, Shiancoe, etc.).

    2. And yet despite #1 above ..

    - We're leading the league in scoring, averaging 32.5 PPG, the second best in the BB era behind only the 2007 team.
    - We're leading the league in YPG, averaging a staggering 450 YPG, by far the highest in the BB era
    - We're rushing for almost 150 YPG, 5th best in the league
    - We're averaging 29 1st downs /game, which is on pace to be by far the most of any team in history (the current record averaged 26 1st downs/game)
    - We have the best 3rd down conversion rate in the league (57%)

    3. Under BB the Patriots have a lengthy history of not really starting to hit their groove until after Halloween. The 2007 team was an exception to that - they started at an unbelievable pace, and then tailed off a bit as the league began to make adjustments.

    4. Usually I hate the bye week and can't wait until we get back on the field. But this year I'm so grateful that we're off this week. Our team is so banged up. Hernandez, Gronkowski, Mankins and Vollmer in particular can use the rest of offense. Welker was banged up at the end of the St. Louis game. Getting Bolden back would be nice. Gronk is apparently getting cortisone injections and is in severe pain. My biggest concern is whether the players can hold up for the remainder of the season.
  5. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Reflections On Our Day Of Rest - Defense

    I certainly give Ninkovich credit, but saying that he has been "the key" over Jones and others seems a bit of a reach. He has certainly been one of the keys.

    I'm not sure how you can say "this is a risk Belichick took going into the season" given that Dane Fletcher was lost to injury in the preseason, and he was 1st on the depth chart behind the starters. That was a huge loss. It also plays in to your point about the LB pass coverage, as Fletcher was one of our better coverage LBs.

    The pass defense got better in 2011 when McCourty moved to FS, and it was better after McCourty moved to safety the past 2 weeks, in spite of the MASH unit problems.

    I agree and disagree wtih you. Chung has not fundamentally changed. But his liabilities have been exposed to a greater extent as he has been put in more of a coverage role, and he appears to be trying to do more as well. That may be interpreted as "regressing". As a deep coverage safety, Chung does a good imitation of the Human Torch. His skill set is fundamentally the same, and as long as he is limited to a downhill kind of role he can contribute. Whether that is enough to warrant keeping him as a starter, or keeping him beyong this year, is another question.

    I agree. Gregory is a solid rotational safety and DB (he can also play nickel CB, a role he played for San Diego). I like him in that role. I don't like him as a starting safety.

    I'm not sure you can say that Talib is just a patch for 2012. It remains to be seen if he works out, and whether the team extends him beyond this year. IF Talib works out and Dennard continues to develop - both very big "if"'s, I grant you - then the CB situation won't be such a mess going into 2013. It's pending further evaluation, as far as I'm concerned.
  6. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Reflections On Our Day Of Rest - Defense

    Talib is a patch for 2012 in the same way that Welker is. Both players are very important to us in 2012 and are not signed for 2013.

  7. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #51 Jersey

    Re: Reflections On Our Day Of Rest - Defense

    There is a heap that's wrong with having Chung as a starter. He's an average football player.
  8. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Reflections On Our Day Of Rest - Defense

    We can't have a team of all all-pros. Having an average player with 3 years of experience in the system as one of our three safeties is just fine.

  9. VrabelJr

    VrabelJr Rookie

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    Re: Reflections On Our Day Of Rest - Defense

    As long as McCourty is starting at Safety, Chung should not be on the field in anything other than obvious running situations and 3rd and shorts. He's at his best as long as he's within 15 yards of the LOS. Wilson needs to continue to develop so he can play that all around Safety spot next to McCourty.
  10. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #51 Jersey

    Re: Reflections On Our Day Of Rest - Defense

    You're absolutely right that a team of all pros is difficult to obtain. I have been of the opinion for some time that Patrick Chung is a weak link in the Secondary and I am hopeful the Patriots replace him with a better DB at the end of the season.
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