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SI.com: Patriots' savvy receiver strategy

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by JoeSixPat, Aug 28, 2006.

  1. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    My apologies if this has already been posted:

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/si...2006/08/patriots-savvy-receiver-strategy.html

    Actually, I post the article more for the reader feedback than Andrew Perloff's take (how savvy could this guy be if he thinks Reche Caldwell had anything to do with the 41-0 win?)

    There still might be some value to his points however, but it is a long season, and eventually teams might figure out how to defend a 4 TE set.... and as good as our TEs are, having a consistent deep #1 WR threat will make them even better.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2006
  2. arrellbee

    arrellbee Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    Actually, Caldwell got 1st downs on two third down conversions that kept drives going that resulted in a FG and a TD.
     
  3. PatsWickedPissah

    PatsWickedPissah PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Yet another poster who lets facts get in the way of a good tirade against a player.
     
  4. PatsDeb

    PatsDeb PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    We won't look so savvy if Branch gets away and we have no one to replace him. I just wish this whole thing would get over with one way or another so we can concentrate on the season!
     
  5. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Really? I must have missed that. All I saw through the third quarter was a few incompletions and at least one dropped pass. I also saw Brady going off on him once for not running his route right.

    There was a pass interference call that I remember on third down - you're not counting that as a reception, are you?

    You're probably right but it wouldn't surprise me if Caldwell's big plays came against the third stringers as that seems to be when he really shines. Against the 1st stringers - not so good.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2006
  6. PlattsFan

    PlattsFan On the Game Day Roster

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    I think the Pats are better with Branch, I like the guy, and I hope it all works out, but ... the SI dude is exactly right. The Patriots know what guys at positions are really worth, and WRs just aren't worth huge money. QBs are worth almost whatever they want (if they're as good as Brady), good RBs are worth pretty good money, dominant d-lineman are gold ... CBs are generally over-priced, etc, etc.

    Generally, the closer they are to the ball on D, and the more they handle the ball on O ... that's where you need to spend the money. Even the best WRs just aren't worth the money showered on them. How much better did Moss make the Raiders?
     
  7. primetime

    primetime Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    He did that with Troy Brown, too, when Troy failed to turn to catch a pass at the right time. Should the Patriots cut Troy?
     
  8. PSU

    PSU On the Roster

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    JoeSixPunt.......I love this site but you IRRITATE THE FU#K outta me!!! Always so negative.
     
  9. 3 to be 4

    3 to be 4 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    lets go through it. how many SB Champs had dominant WRs?
    Bob Hayes and Paul Warfield were mostly decoys by the time their teams won the SBs in the early 70's.
    Swann and Stallworth.
    Branch and Biletnikoff
    Drew Pearson was terrific for Dallas
    Dwight Clark - not as great as "The Catch" leads people to remember
    Art Monk
    Jerry Rice and John Taylor
    Michael Irvin
    Bruce and Holt?
    Ward?
    thats about it folks, and only Swann, Stallworth, Rice, Irvin, and maybe Monk could even be called dominant.

    WR is a luxury, but give me a solid OL,DL, and QB anyday
     
  10. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    JSP-
    Caldwell's 2 receptions in the 3rd quarter went for 1st downs. Caldwell also drew the pass interference penalty for another 1st down.

    Now, on the incompletions, by all accounts, there was no way that Caldwell could have gotten them. The only fault was on the one that hit him in the hands. And arrellbee's breakdown admitted that.
     
  11. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Yes, the Pats are better with Branch than without him. I don't think ANYONE has said otherwise. However, the Patriots don't NEED Branch to win. And that is what Branch fails to realize.

    The Patriots made Branch 2 very lucrative offers and Branch turned them down without bothering to offer a counter. That tells me that he does NOT want to be in New England, no matter what he says. Not that I will believe him unless he comes out and fires Chayut and gets his rear end into camp. Not after he lied and said that he is a man of honor and would honor his contract whether or not he got an extension.
     
  12. PATRIOTS-80

    PATRIOTS-80 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    Considering the fact that our base offense is a 2TE, 2 WR offense (sometimes Watson lines up in the slot), one must remember that a linebacker CANNOT assigned our TE's alone, they need safety help. Which means that their CB will not have much safety help at all (unless they want to put just LBs on Watson and Graham). That's the inherent advantage of having of two 1st round pick TEs that can play. Branch one-on-one would be scary ... but having our WRs one-on-one with Brady at QB isn't exactly a doomsday scenario. Also add in a better running game than last year and easier schedule than the hard one we had last year...
     
  13. arrellbee

    arrellbee Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    The first was, as you mention, the PI call on a Pass from Brady 1st-11:18. Caldwell and Brady appeared to be on exactly the same page as the pass was right to Caldwell who had turned back to get the pass. The defender was behind Caldwell and couldn't get to the ball except by going thru Caldwell for the PI. Obviously, we would have much rather Caldwell had had a chance to make the catch so we could get a data point on whether he can be depended on to make catches. But because his route was apparently spot on and he had the DB beaten, I give him credit for the 17 yard pick up and first down. Drive ended in a FG.

    The second was, as you surmise, in the 4th from Cassel - 4th-10:00. I would count this as a very good catch since he was tightly covered by the DB but had beaten him to the outside. Cassel's pass got him right in stride but he did have to go up a little bit and reach for the ball, so it took a little bit extra to make a nice catch. He was also hit hard immediately and held on with no problem. It was a 15 yard pick up so not a dink-dunk pass. So even though it was 4th quarter and from Cassel, I would rate it as a very respectable catch. So that's one tiny data point as we try to figure out what he can contribute. By the way, it was 3rd and 5 from the Pat's 25 so not only did it keep the drive going but it was a critical play to keep from having to punt from deep in their own territory. Drive ended in a TD.

    He had another catch from Cassel on a 3rd and 8 where he got 10 yards for a 1st down conversion. It was also a very respectable catch. Caldwell apparently ran a good stop pattern 2 yards beyond the 1st down marker. Cassel's throw was a little high - perhaps to get it over a DLman. Caldwell had to jump for the ball but I would think it was a pretty good technique because by jumping the ball came right into his hands at the numbers which would give him the best chance of a reception. As you can expect from a stop pattern, the DB hit him hard just as one foot touched back on the ground and he held on OK. Even with that 1st down at the Pat's 45, the drive ended with a Mills catch and fumble. So one more tiny data point.

    He had a catch from Brady at 3rd-12:05 which was a one step drop and quick out to Caldwell just turning in place to get the ball. Brady threw it high and Caldwell had to jump and still had to take it just above his head. He came down turning his body in the air to be facing down field and immediately launched from his back foot. I thought it was a pretty decent WR technique for that kind of play. He only got 3 yards because the DB closed fast. Caldwell tried to straight-arm the DB and get some more yardage but that didn't get him anything extra. His quickness got the three yards and I think it was good to see him challenge the DB - on a play like that, any gain is strictly YAC. The drive ended in a punt.

    The dropped pass you mention was a pretty bad one - 2nd-0:41. He and Brady were exactly in sync on the pattern about 10 yards downfield. The pass was a little high so he had to go up and even so the ball was still up around his head, but it looked like he just had hard hands and deflected the ball down. He was hit but not before he had already lost the ball. It was not a 'gimme', but I think you would expect a Branch to make the catch at least 9 times out of 10.

    It seemed like he was in sync on routes with both Brady and Cassel except for the one you make a good observation on - 2nd-10:23. It appeared that Brady expected him to be 5 yards closer to the sideline than he was. It would be nice to know if he didn't run a canned pattern correctly or if he didn't make an adjustment to coverage like Brady would have expected. I'm sure from your posts that you are very aware of how complex the route options and adjustments are in the Pats scheme. We'll have to see if Caldwell can handle it. If he can't, Brady isn't going to be throwing toward him very much, even if he makes the roster.

    Cheers
     
  14. arrellbee

    arrellbee Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    There was one where he had a chance and it would have been a great catch if he had made it.

    3rd - 12:11 - Another fly pattern down the middle of the field it looked like, unless is was a deliberate fly, stop, and comeback (I kind of doubt it). It was tight double coverage. The ball was thrown short and off to the right of Caldwell. Again, without any TV view of the whole route, it is frustrating to try to piece it together. If Brady was seeing the double coverage and deliberately throwing the ball short, he didn't put it right to where Caldwell was. Caldwell did stop and try for the ball but he had to dive sideways and the ball was out and down. It would have been a great catch if he had made it - but he didn't make it. Not something that you can fault him very much for I wouldn't think. He apparently pulled up as he was on the left hash marks. Brady's throw was a couple yards inside the hash mark. You would love to know if Caldwell's route was supposed to be down a specific line or if he was to split double team defenders, or whatever - there are any number of different possibilities. If Brady's throw had been at Caldwell, the DBs could not have defended it and we would have had a good chance to see how Caldwell handled a catchable ball. Too bad we didn't get the chance. If Caldwell coming back for the ball was an adjustment by him, he did a good job of that. The defenders were pulling up but not as quickly as Caldwell.
     
  15. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Me and Coach Belichick both - who pretty much had the same things to say about Caldwell failing to put his success in practice on the field, and not showing enough against 1st stringers.

    BB's a bit more diplomatic than I am though I'll admit - at least when he's talking to the media
     
  16. jaychamp

    jaychamp On the Game Day Roster

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    I'd hardly characterize a hand gesture and a sigh as "going off"
     
  17. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Tremendous breakdown - great work!

    Maybe its just me but I don't really give WRs credit for PI calls as receptions but since in this case it was against a 1st team defender, let's not quibble and give him credit for a pass that resulted in a FG

    I guess I focus my criticism of Caldwell when he's playing with Brady and the 1st teams on Offense and Defense are out there - I don't feel like I'm seeing enough

    When Cassell and the other 2nd and 3rd stringers get into the game Caldwell seems to do a little better and is a little more comfortable.

    Are my expectatons high? Yup. Caldwell is being given every chance to show that he is currently the best WR out there with Branch and Jackson out of commission.

    He's not come close to doing that in my opinon - of Brown, Childress and Caldwell I have him ranked 3rd in that group - and that's just not good enough

    Certainly not good enough for all those who view his entire career as a statistical aberration.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2006
  18. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    That was a different situation - it was much more than a passing hand gesture.
     

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