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Returning 22 of 24 starters

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by ALP, May 2, 2013.

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  1. ALP

    ALP Rookie

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    Guess which one positions both new guys are filling?

    However that is very good news for the D...it means this unit knows and should trust each other for he most part
  2. MTM558

    MTM558 Rookie

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    #51 Jersey

    Continuity is great to have, but I think that the defense could have used a bit more of a makeover.

    The offense will always be fine as long as Brady is under center. Look at 2006 as proof. The Patriots had to revamp their Wide Receiver corp this year, but the Offensive Line remains in tact, the Tight Ends should be healthy, the Running Backs have proved their worth...

    The Defense will again look like the following (going into OTAs and TC):

    Ninkovich - Wilfork - Love - Jones
    Hightower - Spikes - Mayo
    Talib - McCourty - Gregory - Dennard

    Obviously, we expect one of Adrian or Tavon Wilson to win the Strong Safety spot over Gregory, so that is one change. With Jamie Collins coming in and Dane Fletcher returning, the Linebackers now have some extra versatility and coverage ability - awesome.

    Outside of these depth additions, though, the Patriots haven't added an always welcome presence or "game-changer" to this defense. They're banking on Wilfork and Mayo to continue their excellent play, for Jones and Hightower to make progress, and for the Secondary to finally come together.

    The Defensive Tackle spot next to Wilfork still remains an issue, in my opinion. Tommy Kelly and Armond Armstead were brought in to help create an interior pass rush. I'd be disappointed if one of Love or Deaderick end up starting next to Wilfork again. If there is potential for change, I want to lean Armstead.

    At Left Defensive End - Ninkovich is a solid player. But he is not a great or an exceptional player. I still believe that unless the Patriots suddenly sign a Dwight Freeney or a John Abraham to be the 3rd Defensive End in the rotation, that Ninkovich should fill that roll. Justin Francis, Jake Bequette, Michael Buchanan, Cunningham... all of them have a much thicker build that would fit the LDE mold.

    It will still be exciting to see how it all unfolds.
  3. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    You forget the DT additions of Kelly and Armstead.

  4. BradyFTW!

    BradyFTW! PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    We'll be starting two new WRs, one new DT (hopefully), one new safety (hopefully), and there's an outside chance that we'll be starting a new DE. In addition, it wouldn't surprise me if the starting positions get juggled along the offensive line. Connolly at RG never seemed like an ideal fit; more a fit of necessity after Waters decided not to show up. Hopefully we can get a new RG (maybe Cannon?), enabling Connolly to move back to C, where he's better than Wendell.
  5. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Some starters from last years will be depth and 1 or 2 might not even make the team. The core has been revamped and is young and developing the D is due to improve from just that along.

    Compared to the opening game from last year I expect the secondary to be entirely different and upgraded in each position.

    CB: McCourty ----> Talib
    CB: Arrington -----> Dennard
    Slot: ??? --------> Arrington
    FS: Grgory -------> McCourty
    SS: Chung --------> A Wilson

    Upgrade at each position.
  6. tonyto3690

    tonyto3690 Banned

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    The article posted on this site about Chandler wanting to be a leader was really promising. Sounds like a high class guy who wants to lead by example and work ethic. Exactly what you want. He also talks about how he never really felt comfortable in his shoes because of expectations and being a rookie but how he already feels better. Expect big things this year from him.

    On the other side of the ball, it's reported that Ridley is noticeably bigger and added a lot of muscle and looks jacked. Hopefully this doesn't slow him down
  7. supafly

    supafly PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I respectfully disagree with this thought.

    Wendell played an excellent season last year at Center, so I can't imagine why Belichick would change that up.

    On top of that, we have absolutely nothing at all to go on as far as Cannon moving to play guard. If anything we have several quotes from Belichick that prove the exact opposite.
  8. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    If we are not already there, we are fast approaching the point where the designation of 'starter' is a nebulous and perhaps somewhat insignificant designation for many players that earn that title.

    While there is obviously a Grand Canyon chasm of a difference at a position such as QB, the difference in not so well defined in terms of amount of playing time for some of the other positions due to how often the team is in sub packages.



    2012 Offensive Snap Counts (1,240 total)

    Quarterback
    1,224 - 98.7% - Tom Brady
    16 ----- 1.3% - Ryan Mallett

    Running Back and Fullback
    555 - 44.8% - Stevan Ridley
    423 - 34.1% - Danny Woodhead
    158 - 12.7% - Shane Vereen
    93 --- 7.5% - Brandon Bolden
    9 --- >1.0% - Dan Connolly
    8 --- >1.0% - Lex Hilliard
    2 --- >1.0% - Donald Thomas

    Wide Receiver
    1,085 - 87.5% - Wes Welker
    1,051 - 84.8% - Brandon Lloyd
    482 --- 38.9% - Deion Branch
    299 --- 24.1% - Julian Edelman
    37 ----- 3.0% - Matthew Slater
    20 ----- 1.6% - Donte’ Stallworth
    6 ----- >1.0% - Greg Salas
    3 ----- >1.0% - Kamar Aiken

    Tight End
    743 - 59.9% - Rob Gronkowski
    575 - 46.4% - Aaron Hernandez
    293 - 23.6% - Daniel Fells
    283 - 22.8% - Michael Hoomanawanui
    51 --- 4.1% - Visanthe Shiancoe
    15 --- 1.2% - Marcus Cannon
    9 --- >1.0% - Nick McDonald
    4 --- >1.0% - Kellen Winslow

    Offensive Line
    1,234 - 99.8% - LT Nate Solder
    1,231 - 99.5% - C Ryan Wendell
    1,096 - 88.6% - RT Sebastian Vollmer
    890 --- 71.8% - RG Dan Connolly
    744 --- 60.5% - LG Logan Mankins
    606 --- 48.9% - RG/LG Donald Thomas
    246 --- 19.8% - G/C Nick McDonald
    175 --- 13.6% - RT Marcus Cannon
    6 ----- >1.0% - G Mitch Petrus



    2012 Defensive Snap Counts (1,112 total)

    Defensive End
    923 – 83.0% - Rob Ninkovich
    746 – 67.1% - Chandler Jones
    446 – 40.1% - Jermaine Cunningham
    252 – 22.7% - Trevor Scott
    193 - 17.4% - Justin Francis
    29 --– 2.6% - Jake Bequette

    Defensive Tackle
    904 – 81.3% - Vince Wilfork
    549 – 49.4% - Kyle Love
    378 – 34.0% - Brandon Deaderick
    92 --– 8.3% - Ron Brace
    16 –-- 1.4% - Terrell McClain
    8 --– >1.0% - Marcus Forston

    Linebacker
    1,066 – 95.9% - Jerod Mayo
    736 --– 66.2% - Brandon Spikes
    574 --– 51.6% - Dont’a Hightower
    71 ----– 6.4% - Tracy White
    19 ----– 1.7% - Mike Rivera
    9 ----– >1.0% - Niko Koutouvides
    6 ----– >1.0% - Bobby Carpenter
    6 ----– >1.0% - Jeff Tarpinian

    Cornerback
    1,092 – 98.2% Devin McCourty
    838 --– 75.4% Kyle Arrington
    599 --– 53.9% Alfonzo Dennard
    306 --– 27.5% Aqib Talib
    233 --– 21.0% Sterling Moore
    197 --– 17.7% Marquice Cole
    84 ----– 7.6% Ras-I Dowling
    69 ----– 6.2% Derrick Martin

    Safety
    749 – 67.4% - Steve Gregory
    536 – 48.2% - Patrick Chung
    473 – 42.5% - Tavon Wilson
    34 –-- 3.1% - Nate Ebner

    Note: Obviously many of McCourty's snaps were at safety, but I don't have that breakdown between the two positions handy.


    Snaps: Final look at '12 on offense - New England Patriots Blog - ESPN Boston
    Snaps: Final look at '12 on o-line - New England Patriots Blog - ESPN Boston
    Snaps: Final look at '12 on defense - New England Patriots Blog - ESPN Boston
    Last edited: May 2, 2013
  9. patsfan-1982

    patsfan-1982 Rookie

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    offense

    QB Tom Brady
    RB Stevan Ridley
    WR Josh Boyce
    WR Danny Amendola
    TE Rob Gronkowski
    TE Aaron Hernandez
    C Ryan Wendell
    LG Logan Mankins
    RG Dan Connolly
    LT Nate Solder
    RT Sebastian Vollmer

    defense

    RDE Chandler Jones
    LDE Rob Ninkovich
    DT Vince Wilfork
    DT Tommy Kelly
    MLB Jerod Mayo
    OLB Dont'a Hightower
    OLB Brandon Spikes
    SS Tavon Wilson
    FS Devin McCourty
    CB Aqib Talib
    CB Alfonzo Dennard

    ST

    P Zoltan Mesko
    K Stephen Gostkowski
    PR Julian Edelman
    KR Josh Boyce
  10. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I'm not buying on OFFENSE

    QB Brady
    WR Welker, Lloyd (now Amendola and Dobson or Boyce, the other being the #3)
    TE Gronkowski, Hernandez
    RB Ridley
    OL Solder, Mankins, Wendell, Connolly, Vollmer

    Other than injury replacement, the only real package players with significant reps were Woodhead as #3 RB and Branch/Edelman as #3 WR. Even the #3 WR reps were greatly exaggerated because of injury. I guess there are also a few reps for the #3 blocking TE.

    So, from my perspective, there are 11 clear starters on offense who will get almost all the reps. There are three situation players, one each at RB, WR and TE. We could see a 15th player (change of pace back) getting more reps this year.


    .
    Last edited by a moderator: May 3, 2013
  11. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    On defense, there is more of an argument for 16 players who get all the reps: 3 DE's, 3 DT's. 3 LB's, 3 corners, 3 safeties and perhaps a dime back . Still, there are still clear 10 starters who will all get 75% or more of the reps if healthy. The only starter who does get that number of reps is our #2 starting DT.

  12. jsull87

    jsull87 Rookie

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    2012
    DL: Ninkovich - Wilfork - Love - Jones
    LB: Hightower - Spikes - Mayo
    CB: McCourty Arrington/Dowling (then Arrington would move into the slot)
    S: Chung - Gregory

    2013
    DL: Ninkovich - Wilfork - Love - Jones
    LB: Hightower - Spikes - Mayo
    CB: Talib - Dennard - Arrington (slot)
    S: McCourty - Gregory

    I think 2013 is an improved unit sheerly for the Mccourty, Talib and Dennard switch. I think if Armstead can push for Ninkovich's Job and Wilson can take Gregory's then we will have a very solid unit this year.

    As mentioned earlier the additions of Collins, Fletcher and our 3rd rounder should really help our depth as well.
  13. VrabelJr

    VrabelJr Rookie

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    We're returning 22 of 24 starters as of today. Once the camp battles start I expect competition to push the number down by 2 or 3.
  14. supafly

    supafly PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Exactly. That's why these springtime exercises are totally pointless, besides entertaining us with having something to talk about and pass the time.

    While the general thought of having continuity and returning starters is great for a defense that was the 3rd youngest in the NFL last year, there are also exceptions to this rule as in the case of adding outside players for improvement. I think back to about a month ago when everyone was freaking out and overreacting about the starters lost on BAL, but in all actuality they may very well have improved in some areas just as well. You just can't rush to a reaction this early one way or another, and we go through this every single year.

    In the case of our team, it'll be great to see those 2nd yr jumps from players like Jones/Hightower/T.Wilson, but the real benefit of this defense will be having full yrs of Talib, Dennard, and McCourty at their respective secondary positions. Those are all upgrades that should make a huge difference in my opinion. The return from injury for players like Fletcher and Dowling should help too, and the offseason acquisitions of A.Wilson, Collins, and depth to the secondary are all major bonuses.

    As you pointed out, in the end it won't equal as many "starters" who return from last year, but it will definitely point towards improvement as a whole, and that's the main point to every offseason.
  15. Se7eN

    Se7eN Rookie

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    KR will be Washington I think, read somewhere that that was what his purpose was and I can imagine Bill preferring Vereen for 3DRB considering he has been in the system for a while and has proved he can also come into the fold on other downs and not be exclusively a passing back.
  16. AzPatsFan

    AzPatsFan Rookie

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    On Defense I think there is a certain "critical mass" of players and talent. If you are below that number due to simple lack of talent or injury the Defens crumbles and falls apart.

    Above that critcal number the Defense transforms into something else.
    I think we started to view that transition above critical mass in the second half of the past season.

    But then injuries reduced the Defense again, and if fell apart in the Playoff game against the Ravens. But the way the Pats demolished and discouraged the very good Texans team was magnificent. By the end of the game the Texans had given up tryng to move the ball on the ground or the air; and had ceased trying to stop the Pats on the ground or in the air. They just wanted the game to end.

    The offseason means the return to health of Jones, Love, Talib, Dowling, Fletcher, as well as newcomers Adrain Wilson, Collins, Ryan, and Harmon. Plus this very young team has a year of playing together. Has Belichick moved the team permanently above the critical mass? :confused:

    .
  17. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Part of the dynamic is also injuries.
    There are a few spots that dont really have 'starters' like RB, DT and the LB who comes out in nickel and the db who comes in. The discrepancies in other spots is really an injury thing not a playing time thing.
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