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TC afternoon session 8/10 observations: Pats and Saints

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Patspsycho, Aug 10, 2010.

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  1. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Rookie

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    Well, today we acted like the 10-6 team, we were last season. Brees went marching down the field; we didn’t. Our offense sputtered during situational football, theirs didn’t, particularly in hurry-up offense where Brees just absolutely shredded our nickel (how about a little nightmarish flashback?). Dr. Brees moved the chains at will, and gutted the D like a catfish. Brady couldn’t get his offense downfield, and was so mad, you could cook up a steak with a side of potatoes on his helmet. Not a good sign for the most part, but it was a fantastic learning experience for the youngsters.

    I think the joint practices was very very good for the team. It quite literally was the equivalent of three preseason games all wrapped in one practice. They got an unfamiliar opponent, and a top notch team, and QB whose tell they don’t know. They don’t know the call of the players, their tendencies, etc. and got to play against that in a variety of scenarios in situational football, midfield, red zones, no timeouts, etc. Special teams got quite a workout in punts and kickoffs, onside kicks, time-kill kicks, short field punts, both offensive and defense. It was overwhelming and brought out the insecurity in the youth corp.

    Got there a little late, but you could tell the atmosphere was electric. The place was jammed, and the players were feeding on the intensity. Chung was very amped up, doing pushups and bolting in sprints- just about foaming at the mouth. Even Moss was into it. Could see Guyton stretching with the teams- looks like he will be returning soon.

    It was interesting to see BB and Payton together.. both are of the same build, height, and both had a visor on, the difference of course stops there. Only one of them ruins perfectly good team gear with a pair of scissors.

    It was interesting to observe the Saints. It is very obvious that Payton has done a great job crafting a top-notch team. Like the Patriots there is very little wasted motion about that team- their practices are very efficient and everyone is involved and paying attention, and they take their jobs seriously. I really would have to say I wouldn’t be surprised to see them in the superbowl again. There is no loss of focus.

    Saints took the field away, and Pats took the closer field and finally I was able to watch the D up close. Practice opened with BB talking to the D at length about gap penetration- did not look like he was happy about what happened this morning. He had blue barrels double as the Saints OL, and it looked like he was discussing getting on the same page as far as weakside/strongside gap contain and knowing where the LB penetrates to make plays.

    Then the defense worked on shifting the defense and I was able to confirm that it is indeed Peppers who has a cannon for an arm- he was doubling as the other teams QB and had an assistant double as TE, motion to weakside or strongside, to force defensive shifts. I notice that instead of simply swapping the assignments, Mayo and Spikes switched places, then the D drops back in zone coverage and Peppers fires the ball at a player who “intercepts” and then runs behind protection.

    A lot of team drills by both teams- too much to keep track of. Agility drills, catching drills, etc. I notice the Saints work a lot with cones. Pats WR worked on red zone catching, and RBs worked on blitz blocking.

    Joint drills:

    Pats WR vs. Saints DB
    Pats RB vs. Saints LB
    OL vs DL, etc.

    And the same in reverse (e.g., Saints WR vs. Pats DB).

    In front of me, the Pats WR were going against the Saints DB. Its too easy to get carried away by the results because there are no jamming, no bump and run coverage, and there’s a big cushion to start with. People got excited- Welker faked Torrence out of his shoes, and Edelman beat Chip Vaughn.. and basically our WRs were having their way, but across the field, you could see the Saints were having their ways with our DBs as well. Saints fans will be happy to learn that Larry Beavers is the real deal. He cooked Butler on a deep route.

    Situational football:

    Was surprised to see the umpire in his old position, in the defensive backfield, rather than in his new position (per new rule changes for 2010). That really befuddled me- if anyone knows why this happened, please clarify. I have no idea what purpose this serves.

    Special teams got a great workout- the Saints ST definitely had the upper edge over ours and was consistently getting through. Our glaring weakness is setting protection and having everyone find their man. Every time the ST deployed, there was always a Saints player getting through without a hand on him. You can bet the video room will be very busy tonight.

    The situational football today was great. It exposed a variety of elements- and I think today was Hernandez’s wakeup call to the NFL. He definitely wasn’t at his best. Will Smith beat him badly off the edge and was able to strip Brady. Hernandez also incurred a false start and had to run a penalty lap, and also in hurry up offense made the dumb mistake of leaving the ball on the ground rather than giving it to the referee (because this burns off valuable seconds). However it is good that this happens in practice than in real game condition. I think he was humbled today.

    And as I mentioned earlier, the offense sputtered. Brady had a few miscommunications- a long bomb to Jenkins fell short because he ran a 7 to the inside, where Brady threw outside.. Welker quit on a long route, probably I think because he was on top of a stack and expected Brady to throw under. Moss also defaulted on a hitch; a matter of timing, but it was interesting to see Brady blow up to the point of slamming his helmet on the ground and using a word that rhymes with duck. This is the dark side of Brady, the incessant perfectionist- and someone who demands excellence and is very hard to get along with if you don’t perform up to his standards.

    But there were good things- quite good things. Gronk showed he can absorb massive hits and keep chugging. By all appearances he is 3rd on the depth chart, but I don’t think he will be there for long. I really see a lot of Jason Witten in him. He displays ease in catching passes outside of his frame, something that Crumpler cannot do at this point in his career what with the bulk he has.

    At the end of situational football both sides did hurry up offense (2nd string also took reps, which was great). And as I mentioned elsewhere Brees just shredded the backfield to the point where BB got upset and called for another series which went the same way- but the 3rd one he let them have it and the result was much better. Almost had an interception, and Brees had two incompletions to David Thomas and I believe Jimmy Graham. Then on 3rd and 10, there was a strongside overload stunt that ended up in a Wheatley interception because the strongside completely collapsed the left side of the OL and forced Brees to throw into coverage.
  2. Patjew

    Patjew PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    No Jersey Selected

    I've been looking forward to this report all day.

    I've been really excited about the development of this team. My expectations are now tempered. I know, I know, it's very early still.
  3. sbpatfan

    sbpatfan Banned

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    Awesome, better than any professional TC reports. Reiss is starting to suck.
  4. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Rookie

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    Further observations:

    1) The more I think about it, the more I think we cannot undervalue playing against a team that is just as top-notch and professional, if not more, than we are. They already know how good Hernandez is and played him accordingly by shifting the LB strongside and bringing down the safety to spy. That to me is the mark of a team that does its homework all the time.

    2) Spikes is just getting better and better. His feel for the game is sick. He just knows where to be at all times and was around the ball. You will be happy to know that our run-stuffing improves tremendously every time he is in there. He is almost always the first man to the ball in the open field. He broke up a pass to Colston. I think Jays52 could well be on target in predicting DROY for him.

    3) Fred Taylor is #1 on the RB depth chart, and I would say it goes: Taylor, Maroney, Morris, Faulk. BJGE is fighting with Chris Taylor for the final spot on the Geritol RB committee (and yes we are going with 5).

    4) Connolly is not a good fix for LG. He gets pushed back often and is overpowered easily (Saints front four really exposed this). One bad side effect to this is that it causes even more wear and tear on Light. He was really banged up today and had to shake off a lower left leg injury. If Connolly plays the entire year, I predict an injury for Light. We absolutely need Mankins back.

    5) The best thing about today was that 1st, 2nd, and 3rd string got full workouts in every phase of the game, and getting a real challenge. You could not duplicate this in a preseason game. I can only think that with TWO joint team practices, that we are going to be one of the most prepared squads once the season starts. That will definitely offset the fact that we are a young, inexperienced team.
  5. patsfan-1982

    patsfan-1982 Rookie

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    sounds like brady is still liveing off the deep ball that could be a problem
  6. SammyBlueCat

    SammyBlueCat Rookie

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    Very nice work Patspsycho
  7. signbabybrady

    signbabybrady Rookie

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    #24 Jersey

    I definitely would have liked to see some more success in certain situations but I wasn't so discouraged. I saw a team better than 10-6. On individual levels up and down the field I think I saw a team that hung with the best in the game on the practice field and like you said they got some good work in that was likely better one preseason game.

    .
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2010
  8. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Rookie

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    I don't think you're the only one.. I think the defense got really humbled and lost their swagger for a bit. But I think that was good for them not to get so ahead of themselves. Our nickel and dime got roasted.

    I have to say that my expectations got put in place too.

    I really am glad we don't see Brees & Co. again this season and if we face them in the superbowl, I will be very nervous. He is the true antithesis to our "bend but don't break" defense, because he has the two elements that are crucial to defeating it: patience and pin-point accuracy, which are key to the methodical gains that move the chains on our Fairbanks-Bullough philosophy. It also doesn't help that he has great poise.

    He is our kryptonite.
  9. Marqui

    Marqui Rookie

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    Yikes. Do you feel winning the division is out of the question?
  10. NHPATSFAN11

    NHPATSFAN11 Rookie

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    Was it really that bad? The other thread ( tweet based one) sounded a little more positive. Let's hope tomorrow is better. I guess it's a good sign that Brady is cursing already, better now than half-way through the season like last year.
  11. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Rookie

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    No, not at all. Don't forget we went up against the best team in the NFL.
  12. bigfandan

    bigfandan Rookie

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    Psycho, great piece of work!

    3 things came to mind, all negative:
    1. BB's team again is ill-prepared; maybe a function of trying to integrate lots of new players
    2. our player developement seems to suffer due to ineffective coaching. Just a hunch; but it seemed almost impossible to get a high performer from Pats D. We did not develope one OLB in years; and free agency acquisition has not worked either; even proven veterans are not quite good enough to play OLB for us (Burgess, AdT, now Shobel can play play in subpackage? wtf!).
    3. If Spikes is the always first to the ball, why was not BB teaching more intuitive stuff? His reads seem to be better than the ones BB taught (BB called Spikes an interesting and intuitive player).

  13. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Rookie

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    Not too bad, but we did have our hands full. I am just happy that we are "getting it" now, rather than when it counts, during the regular season.
  14. BradyFTW!

    BradyFTW! PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Agreed. Personally, I'm not worried that our young defense is getting steamrolled by the best offense in the league, because I wouldn't expect anything else. All that matters is that they're learning
  15. TheComeback

    TheComeback Rookie

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    Great stuff Patspsycho. There is more detail here than any of the professional journalists. Best training camp report I've read this year.
  16. VectorPrime

    VectorPrime Rookie

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    You couldn't possibly gather that from anything in TC, let alone in one as good as the Pats have been running. Putting that much stake into a joint practice against the best team in the NFL before the preseason even starts is just foolish.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2010
  17. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I'd be concerned if the best offense in the league didn't light up a young defense in transition. I wouldn't put it past BB to put the d in a position to fail to keep fire lit under their bellies to show them what has to be down to reach the mountain top.

    Geez it's nice to read competitive reports.
  18. pherein

    pherein Rookie

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    Great write up Patpsycho, thanks we are pretty starved for info and you guys are probably feeding 2-3 Saints forums with well educated football.

    Very happy with the outcome today, both our teams need this kind of scrimmaging badly. I was greatly encourage to see Payton and BB hanging out. We are pretty happy with Payton knowing and voicing he has a long long way to go before he could get close to Belichick's and the Patriots accomplishments, and that he is not afraid to ask question, as he also did to Brady today about our team. Belichick's is pretty admired and seems to be a sporting gentlemen of football, that will beat the tar out you if you don't take him seriously or prepare. Im glade our coaches have such a relationship of respect, it can only benefit us both greatly, and I know it will only get better.

    Any team fielded by BB is going to be a winner, and this year will be no different. So these days we spend in N.E. are gold for us. Gives Both our defenses an excellent chance to play against, what I believe to be, two of the better offenses in the NFL.
    This is the time to miss balls, coverage, assignments, tackles, and etc..

    Im sure when G.Williams was screaming at Greer for blowing coverage on Moss on that bomb, Greer turned to GW and said what I would have “ Thats Finkin Brady Gregg!, NOT matt leinart!!, shesh.”

    Looking foward to more of your write ups
  19. Brady2Welker

    Brady2Welker Rookie

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    I've heard to the opposite, that hes been throwing the quintessential NFL routes; 15 yard outs, passes over the middle to our new TE's. I think the concern that Brady has his horse blinders on because of last year is unjustified. I think now he has faith in these new receivers and we'll see them appear for us this year; in what quantity remains to be seen. That said I hope Psycho can chime in and tell us what % of his throws seem to be 'bombs' to Moss.
  20. Nikolai

    Nikolai Football Atheist PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #54 Jersey

    The best write ups I've seen anywhere. Great work.

    I don't think we can read into this too much. This is a learning experience, and against the best team in the NFL to boot.
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