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This LB corps could be dominant!

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Bostonian1962, Jun 27, 2008.

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  1. Bostonian1962

    Bostonian1962 In the Starting Line-Up

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    You can file this offseason post under the hyperbole category if you wish, but as I sit here at the end of June '08, I truly can see this Patriots' LB crew being VERY strong.

    Couldn't you see any team's LB Corp improving if:

    1. They added a stud 1st Round Pick to the Mix.

    OR

    2. They had a highly touted FA linebacker from a year ago, that was moved inside and out, settle into ONE position this year.

    OR

    3. They added a young, talented Free Agent LB THIS year.

    OR

    4. A young LB that has been improving on the team, finally explodes onto the scene.

    OR

    5. They hit with a 2008 Undrafted Free Agent LB, that has the talent, and with coaches pays off.

    Now if you look at the Patriots, they might not just hit with one of these, but the realistically could hit with one or more of these areas. Think about it:

    #1. - Mayo, or Crable, or less likely Ruud
    #2. - Adalius Thomas
    #3. - Hobson
    #4. - Pierre Woods
    #5. - Redd, or Guyton

    It is definitely not too out of whack to think that this LB corp. could be a really tremendous group. Am I the only one having such great thoughts about a group we haven't even seen hit the field yet for '08?
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2008
  2. skri65

    skri65 Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    Average is good enough to become above average. Almost all of our LB's started out average and became something more. (Bruschi, Adalius, Vrabel)
     
  3. signbabybrady

    signbabybrady Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    #24 Jersey

    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    I for one am really excited about or LB corp. We have had some good ones thru this decade and this has potential to be better but those things listed above need to hit quickly.


    I will except your rationale on what you saw on the field as he did play for team. But I think it is dumb to look into how long it took him to get signed. You have no idea what factors went into that and to assume it was lack of intrest is foolish.
     
  4. Rob0729

    Rob0729 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    He was miscast by the Jets as an OLB. Even so, he had a pretty good year in 2006. The guy is built to be an ILB in the 3-4, but for some reason Mangini had him playing outside although his short arms, lack of size to take on big OTs, and last of edge rushing speed were huge negatives playing outside (but wouldn't hurt him inside).

    I think the guy is versatile enough, smart enough, and has good instincts to fit in well in the Patriots' system. He seems to have picked up the system quickly which is always a positive.

    Remember, Jets fans weren't overly impressed with Roman Phifer when he was a Jet either. He ended up being a great addition for the Patriots.

    It all depends on the system and where you plug in a guy in a lot of cases. Mangini's approach seems to force fit guys into what he is trying to do rather than put the guys in the best postion to succeed even if it means revising what you are trying to do. I think Hobson was a victim of that philosophy.
     
  5. patsox23

    patsox23 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    Hobson is a JAG. He couldn't get a multi-year deal anywhere. He settled for a crappy offer from the Pats for one year. I hope he works out, but I'm not counting on it.
     
  6. Rob0729

    Rob0729 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    Yeah, there are just some players who fall between the crack. It seems to be that way with LBs this year. It took Colvin longer than Hobson to find a new team and he is what teams are always looking for - a very good pass rusher. Takeo Spikes is still on the open market.

    The Pats have a history of adding players no one wanted and getting maximum production out of them including Roman Phifer, Bobby Hamilton, Mike Vrabel, Randy Moss (granted it isn't really fair to include him since he was a previous superstar who had some bad years), Joe Andruzzi, David Patten, etc.
     
  7. Bostonian1962

    Bostonian1962 In the Starting Line-Up

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    The story on his free agency is that many teams were after him and he said he would visit one team and one team only - The Patriots. That has many of us excited.

    http://www.projo.com/patriots/content/sp_fbn_patriots_passing_camp21_05-21-08_PJA7D_v8.357de9c.html

    Plus, many say he was played out of position with The Jets, and at 6'0, 252 lbs, is perfectly suited to be moved inside in the 3-4, where the Pats plan to play him.

    Heck, even if he was out of position, he still posted 100 tacles and 6 sacks in '06, so he produced regardless. On top of it all, he's only 28. There is alot there to get excited about.
     
  8. signbabybrady

    signbabybrady Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    #24 Jersey

    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!


    and you know what teams actually showed intrest to him during the period in which he "wasn't getting much intrest".

    How do you know 5 teams didn't want him but he didn't want to go to a team that was equally as bad as the Jets????

    Do you know what was going on in his personal life...Maybe he had a reason to be slow on the market maybe he had more important things to deal with.

    or maybe you are right....Just seems like an odd thing to make assumptions on especially if as you said you liked the guy.
     
  9. Bostonian1962

    Bostonian1962 In the Starting Line-Up

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    All good points, but I don't even buy into the statement that he took a long time to sign. Signing period opened some time in March and ends on July 22. Pats signed Hobson on April 8, 2008.

    Also, see this interview with Hobson from Mike Reiss. From his own mouth there were "other teams" interested, including Arizona, but he wanted to stay on the East Coast. Let's not let the facts get in the way. :)

    http://www.boston.com/sports/football/patriots/reiss_pieces/2008/05/victor_hobson_i.html
     
  10. FarScapeR

    FarScapeR On the Game Day Roster

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    Belichick has always been tweaking the LB corps, getting free agents and retired players to play up to their potential, but this draft haul is a dramatic restocking of that group. I wouldn't be surprised, however, if we still have the same starters on day one as we did at the end of last season.
     
  11. JSn

    JSn Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    I think a solid rotation keeping new teammates and classics (come back Junior) will put the fear of God into a lot of QB's. Or the fear of flying Elvis' anyway.

    If Hobson can get regular penetration in his times on the field and our edge rushers can stay fresh enough to keep that "games 1-9" vibe happening, we just might find ourselves nodding more and pffting less that Defense wins Championships (and no, I don't want to talk about the superbowl, haha).
     
  12. tombonneau

    tombonneau In the Starting Line-Up

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    This is what has me most excited. We all know the draft is a crap shoot, but recent history shows that early first round LBs seem to do very well, very quickly.

    2007
    #11 Patrick Willis DROY 07 Pro Bowl

    2006
    #5 AJ Hawk - Solid starter on the verge
    #7 Ernie Sims - Solid starter and about the only good first round pick by Detroit :)

    2005
    #11 Demarcus Ware Pro Bowler
    #12 Shawn Merriman Pro Bowler & DPOY if not for suspension in 06

    2004
    #12 Jonathan Vilma DROY
    #17 DJ Williams Top LB

    2003
    #10 Terrel Suggs DROY & All Pro

    And this is not cherry picking. This is flat out the only LBs drafted in the top of the first round for the last 5 years.

    Not only are there no busts, but these guys are pretty much all Pro Bowlers or soon-to-be Pro Bowlers. Oh, and that's with none of them being coached up by BB.

    If that list doesn't get you excited for the prospects of Mayo, I don't know what will. :)
     
  13. DGameguy

    DGameguy Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    I think you also have to factor in Tank Williams when you're evaluating this linebacking corp. The rushed him a lot as a linebacker during the camps, and I could see him being a superior Victor Green when working out of the Big Nickel. He can be a punishing tackler.
     
  14. JR4

    JR4 In the Starting Line-up PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    "This LB Corp Could be Dominant"
    .... not sure what determines if it is "Dominant" but
    it should be very good.
    However,
    I am cautious because .... experience in BB's system is as important if not
    more so than the talent playing.

    With that in mind the new players may need some real combat experience
    using BB's system to settle in.
    The good thing is 3 starters are returning. It will be up to Mayo and/or Hobson to learn the system well enough so they are reacting fast enough under many different situations.

    As a unit, they should be pretty good at the getgo and should be close to
    very good by mid season is my guess.
    Just like in years past when new players start there could be miss
    diagnosed plays which could allow some big runs.
    They will get better as season progresses.
     
  15. rabthepat

    rabthepat 2nd Team Getting Their First Start

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    This LB group should be average. "Dominant" would be a reach. Too much age, loss of Colvin, A.T. an underachiever, new players who have to learn the system and too high of expectations on a rookie.
     
  16. tombonneau

    tombonneau In the Starting Line-Up

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    You must be fun at parties. ;)
     
  17. Double G

    Double G In the Starting Line-Up

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    I'd be happy if any of our linebackers had the ability this year to recover a fumble at the opponents 30 yard line after falling on the ball, only to have a Sally running back pry the ball lose and blow the Super Bowl.


    Yep, I'd be effin thrilled about that.
     
  18. signbabybrady

    signbabybrady Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    #24 Jersey

    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    Actually I was surprised you guys let him go its not like your LB corp is stacked with talent and you traded away Vilma.

    and yes maybe in most case it is about the almighty Dollar but don't tell that to Bruschi.......and While he is still young it is not uncommon for guys to forgo some money for a better situation, especially if the money is fairly close. But I am glad yuo liked my dig which was obviously aimed at you though I could have left the jets name out and there still would be some truth. Most people may be only out for the money but not all.



    And as another poster pointed out apparently he did have other offers one being Arizona....Which than brought up another reason why someone may wait awhile into free agency. He did not want to move very far (not crazy logic there).
     
  19. Rob0729

    Rob0729 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    Hobson had a down year last year. Many players take one year contracts rather than take multiyear deals in this position because the upside of gambling on a one year deal and cashing in the following year is far greater than taking a modest multiyear deal. Both Randy Moss and Donte Stallworth paid off big time that way last year.

    I think he has the potential to pay off Roman Phifer type dividends for the Patriots. Whether he does or not is another story. The promising thing about mini-camp (and you can't take much from mini-camp) is that he seems to has grasp the system very quickly. That is something failures at LB can't claim like Chad Brown and Monty Beisel (both struggled with the playbook among other things).

    I don't think his production in New York is a good indicator because he is playing a completely different position than what he played in NY. We wouldn't cut Brady because he sucks at RB. OLB and ILB is two very different positions. I think Mangini was stupid to play Hobson outside because he clearly isn't a full-time OLB (maybe in certain situations).

    As for the LB, I think it has the potential to be very good or great. I think Vrabel and Thomas gives us the best OLB tandem in the Belichick era (although the rotation of Vrabel, McGinest, and Colvin in 2004 was probably better for the position overall). It is inside that concerns me. It all depends on how fast Mayo picks up the system and if Hobson lives up to expectations.
     
  20. fgssand

    fgssand PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #17 Jersey

    Re: This LB Corp Could be Dominant!

    Just when I was starting to feel bad for you after the way signbabybrady was slamming you went and wrote this dumb response.

    Fact is he was indeed sick and tired of playing for a bad team and loves what he sees - it took him about one hour to make the 3 hour drive up here on 95.

    Players do not always go for the top dollar, they do take less to play in New England - happens every year up here (Adalius Thomas is exhibit A from last year, SF would have paid him a lot more).

    Also, often times, when a fair to good player on a bad team (playing out of position no less) moves to his natural position on a really good team, they tend to have their most productive years. Especially when they are "young" veterans and have a brain (exhibit "B" - Mike Vrabel).

    I do agree, if he had signed with the Jets, we would have laughed because it does seem that whatever the Jets do, it just ends up bad for player, team and fan alike and we do laugh our asses off over the Jests. You are comic relief and 2 easy victories for us year and and year out.

    The ONLY good Green is Celtics green - haven't you realized that yet??
     
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