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Week 6 Thoughts: Unrelenting Victory

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Oswlek, Oct 15, 2007.

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  1. Oswlek

    Oswlek Rookie

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    The next time a fan of a team looks down the list of scores and claims that NE, "hasn't been challenged" take heart in this win. When Dallas scored to go up 24-21, NE got the ball back having given up as many TDs offensively as they scored in their past three possessions, with a defense that had been scored on for TDs easily on Dallas' past two possessions, minus their top TE and top RB both of which whom had been injured on the two previous drives against a team that had scored more points in the final 30 minutes of their games than 2/3 of the league had scored in all 60.

    And they proceeded to outscore them 27-3 over the final 25 minutes.

    Even if you want to ignore the final TD, this was a great win over a tough opponent on the road. Very satisfying.

    * The was, by a wide margin, the best game that I have seen Dallas play this year. I underestimated just how big that team is. Their receivers are big, their defenders are big, Barber is big and their OL is huge. They really took it to NE and if they were a little more disciplined, they could have given NE a bigger challenge than they did.

    * Carrying over, just a few plays where the slppiness hurt Dallas:

    a) On the obvious "tackled" of Bruschi, I find it hard to believe that Barber wouldn't have gotten the yard Dallas needed even if Bruschi was left alone. The blocking on that play was very good except for the hold, and Barber is a hard guy for one person to take down.
    b) Dallas had a big play to Fasano called back due to a totally unnecessary illegal shift.

    I will grant you that a lot of times penalties are what help create big plays, these are just two examples where it was more stupid that useful.

    * I know that Jones had two big runs on one TD drive, but I have no idea why Barber doesn't see the field more. He runs with serious power and the speed differential isn't *that* great. It isn't like Parker/Bettis. Put it this way, if you could trade a 2nd rounder for either guy, would you need even 2 seconds to pick Barber?

    * I was very surprised at the ferocity of Dallas' pass rush. This was one case where the prevailing thought was correct despite statistics seeming to counter that thought. That game was a great example of how much impact a pass rush can impact the game. Obviously when the QB has no time that is clearly an issue, but there were several example where you could clearly see an open receiver on the opposite side that Brady just didn't have time to get to.

    * Obviously Brady was a little off on the deep balls to Moss. The first one wasn't a big deal, since NE scored a TD anyway, but the other two misfires did cost NE points. What is remarkable is just how little space there is between a TD and an incompletion. On the Moss TD that was correctly overturned, Had the ball been just one foot closer to the Moss, he can just let the ball fall into his arms and he likely corrals the ball tightly enough to hit the grond without issue. One foot on a ball that travelled 55 yards in the air. I was outside throwing a ball around prior to the game and I was pleasantly surprised if I was within one foot of my target on balls that I tossed 10 yards.

    * Moss likely pushes off 5 times a game more forcefully than that. That was a "give the losing team one more shot at getting into this game" call if there ever was one.

    * NE did follow my advice and used the Big Nickle on a significant amount of downs (I didn't even realize BB/DP read this board ;) ) but they still allowed Dallas to move the ball quite a bit, considering the number of mistakes Dallas made. I am going to probably get some flak for this, but I think that Indy slaps at least 35 points on the board if NE's defense plays like that.

    That said, Indy's offense is much different that Dallas. They don't have the power line that Indy has, nor does Addai possess the bruising abilities that Barber has. Pass rush contain isn't as much of an issue and Clark is used differently than Witten, etc. I expect a different performance against Indy purely because I think that you defend them in an entirely different manner.

    * On the Stallworth TD, Stallworth did a Moss-type fake route. He jogged out as if he wasn't a main part of the play, and then burst forward leaving his defender in the dust. Moss also did that play on the flea flicker and double run fake play. Can someone who pays attention more than I tell me if the receivers act similarly on run plays? If not, why would a defender ever bite on it?

    * I laughed when Simms raved about Romo's play-fake on the Crayton TD. That was a terrible fake. I knew immediately by the way he was holding the ball that it was a pass. It seemed more to me that rather than biting on the fake, Harrison thought he had help inside, possibly from Samuel.

    * I'm starting to buy into that Welker kid. He might have potential. On a serious note, Welker really needs to learn when another yard or two is not worth the punishment. He's going to get himself killed one of these days.

    * The Jets are going to have to move on from Pennington soon if they intend on contending any time soon. Teams are finally figuring out that he tosses a couple of easily pickable jump balls per game. He just doesn't have the strength to make bigger plays down the field any other way.

    * Welker made a comment about how Brady puts you in good positions to make catches, which I think is an underrated part of his game. Not only is he excellent at finding the right guy, but rarely do you see a receiver get completely leveled right after the catch.

    Going into Miami, I fully expect Morris and Watson to miss the game and I fully expect Maroney to play. I also won't be surprised at all if Eckel gets a decent amount of carries long before mop-up duty considering Miami's issues with power running this year. I am never comforable when NE heads down there, but this is close as I will ever be.

    As always, I welcome your thoughts.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2007
  2. FrontSeven

    FrontSeven Rookie

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    Good point. This is the first time we've been behind in the second half, which is in itself an astounding stat. They went into overdrive after that.

    I think some of that is overdrive thing was purely coincidental though because the game could have easily gotten away from Dallas before that. I think Dallas got lucky on a couple of calls that went against Randy. One seemed legit, but one did not, but either way it shows how close they came to being humiliated even worse than they were.

    That had to have been the biggest ass kicking a 5-0 team ever took at home.
  3. PatsWickedPissah

    PatsWickedPissah PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Eckel was one of those timely pickups that unfortunately will help. Thanks again Miami!
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2007
  4. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Rookie

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  5. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Honestly, no. Leonard is a vastly superior athlete -- bigger, faster, and a tremendous leaper. They deserved their respective draft positions. But you can tell that BB likes Eckel, and his teammates seem to as well.
  6. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Actually, Brian Leonard's taller--6'1" v. 5'11"--but Eckel is more massive--225+ lb for Leonard v. 235+ for Eckel.

    I won't argue the leaping (or the fact that Leonard's a better pass-catcher), though. [In my mind, Eckel is your classic "bowling ball."]
  7. sebman2112

    sebman2112 Rookie

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    You don't remember him from his first stint in NE? He was here for training camp and the preseason looking good during the process. I wanted NE to try and hold onto his rights but they released him as he had commitments to the Navy. Miami also thought he looked good during the preseason with NE and decided to sign him even with his prior obligations to the Navy.
  8. chris_in_sunnyvale

    chris_in_sunnyvale Rookie

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    Good post as always. I'll add a few thoughts...

    1. I thought this was the *best* job of the OL this year. Now just looking at the stats this sounds crazy because Brady got taken down a few times, including a blindside fumble returned for a TD. However, give Dallas their props. They are a great pass-rushing team AND they brought some new blitzes to the table for this game that the Pats had to adjust in-game...not an easy thing to do with the crowd noise making audibles difficult. The overloaded OLBs on the same side, both blitzing, was something the Pats were not ready for early, but then they made adjustments and stopped them cold. Mankins-Koppen-Neal kept the interior of the pocket from collapsing, ensuring that Brady only had to worry about the outside rush.

    2. I think the short week after the MNF game caught up to Dallas late in the 3rd quarter as the Pats (and Faulk) were able to pretty much run at will on that defense that had looked so stout against the run earlier.

    3. Props to Kevin Faulk. Once Morris went down for good, Faulk was an absolute beast. I was so happy he got healthy enough for this game.

    4. The sequence leading up to the Stallworth TD was beautiful. Run run run, then play-action pass. The safety bit so hard on the play fake I thought he was blitzing. On a side note...look for the Pats to do this vs. Bob Sanders on Nov. 4th.

    5. After a good first quarter, the Pats D started giving up yards. They looked a bit lost in run D at times and had trouble covering the short middle, especially Witten. Fortunately, the Pats' O was so good at killing clock that the D didn't have to be on the field much. Cleveland was also able to move the ball pretty well, but fortunately shot themselves in the foot with bad turnovers. I think we're seeing a combination of game film catching up to the D and teams figuring out how to deal with the Seymour-less DL. Green's play has been spotty the last two weeks and he doesn't command a double-team. This helps opposing offenses because they know they can handle Green one-on-one and then drop a big guy off to take care of Colvin. With Seymour returning, if teams don't double Seymour they are risking their QB's health and if they do, then Colvin might break free for more sacks.

    6. Despite the D having breakdowns, the CBs continue to play excellent football. Owens and Crayton didn't break any long ones and those guys definitely can against lesser defenders.

    7. Is it me or have the Pats started every game with a pass to Moss? In most games it's a sideline pattern for 7 or 8 yards and in this game it was a failed bomb. Moss had this reputation as losing interest when not involved, so it's almost as if it's a conscious decision to get him involved as early as possible.

    8. Forty-one points scored without the benefit of a turnover. On the road. Against a 5-0 team. That's insane.

    Regards,
    Chris
  9. cstjohn17

    cstjohn17 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Good stuff, I was outside doing 10 yard bombs and 15 yard punts with my son before the game so I can totally relate. If I hit or just missed the lawn chair from 10 -15 yards I considered it major success.

    Ware - Good player, he made a real nice read on the screen to Faulk. BB called him the best player in the draft. Pretty high praise, list of other notables from 2005.
    http://www.nfl.com/draft/history/fulldraft?season=2005&round=round1
    Alex Smith, Ronnie Brown, Merriman, Andy Stokes
  10. cstjohn17

    cstjohn17 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Eckel is a JAG from Jagsville. He is like a slower, smaller Heath Evans. It is a nice story that he played at the Naval Academy but he is not even an average NFL FB.
  11. Joker

    Joker PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Good stuff, I was outside doing 10 yard bombs and 15 yard punts with my son before the game so I can totally relate. If I hit or just missed the lawn chair from 10 -15 yards I considered it major success.

    who are you?....Chad Pennington?
  12. PatsWickedPissah

    PatsWickedPissah PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    We started the game with Mike Wright at DE. When Green came in we applied much more pass rush pressure. Looked like Jarvis got held a few times too.
  13. patsox23

    patsox23 Rookie

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    Chris, apparently you didn't get the memo - Seymour's dogging it and Green is the better player. In addition, by inserting #93 into the mix, we will unnecessarily mess with the delicate chemistry that has been established on defense. Best to let Seymour rest up in advance of his trade for a 2nd and a 4th.

    P.S. He is made of glass.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2007
  14. BradyManny

    BradyManny Rookie

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    Enjoyed reading your thoughts as usual.

    I agree about the Moss push-off call. That was mercy rule. I've noticed a couple of mercy rule type calls in the Pats games of late. The "does the ref have a hot-date tonite" kind of calls where it's clear, they've decided the game is over, and making a given call is just not worth it. I think another example was a no-call PI on a Browns DB defending Moss last week late in the game. He was hit early, but the refs just didn't care.

    On the Brady deep balls - I wonder if the effect of what Reiss was talking about earlier in the day - how the Dallas field goes down hill on the sides for drainage - had any impact. As you say, 1 foot can make a huge different. Throwing downhill a few inches likewise may make a difference as well for someone who isn't used to it.

    Also, in re: to the deep balls, the fact that they didn't connect was almost moot. The fact that Moss is able to get open deep has such a huge impact on the game that Brady could miss deep to Moss ten times in a game, it wouldn't matter. Moss is drawing double coverages and that is changing everything and letting guys like Welker and Stallworth abuse the defense.
  15. sebman2112

    sebman2112 Rookie

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    I actually think he's a better short yardage back than Evans who hasn't been very good on short yardage at all lately.
  16. sebman2112

    sebman2112 Rookie

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    That Dallas field does have quite the crown to it, so that could have effected that deep crossing route to Moss.
  17. psychoPat

    psychoPat Role Player PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I've got nothing substantive to add ... or subtract.
    But couldn't let this wee gem zip past without
    a grin of appreciation !
  18. chris_in_sunnyvale

    chris_in_sunnyvale Rookie

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    No, I got the memo...and promptly wiped my *** with it.

    Regards,
    Chris
  19. The_Dragon

    The_Dragon Rookie

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    Great read as usual Oswlek.


    A few points on things you mentioned.


    - Dallas remind me a lot of the Chargers in the sense that they are loaded with talent but as of yet they don't have the discipline that the Pats and Colts have. Penalties can kill teams. The Pats and the Colts, in general, avoid silly penalties. The Cowboys gave away some penalties that really hurt them them yesterday. Cut that out and it'll be another huge improvement.

    - I wouldn't be as worried as others about the run defense. We got gashed a few times but I think the coaches had decided that they'd load up against the pass and take their chances with the run. Didn't the D play with 3 LBs for a lot of the game? Harrison, Sanders and Wilson were all in on a lot of plays. The Pats chose their poison and it was the run.

    - Agreed on Welker and the extra yards. He was lucky yesterday that a few balls fumbled out of bounds. I think this is something that all WRs across the league need to clue up on. Gaining an extra yard needs to be balanced against losing the ball. Defenders are getting so much better at stripping the ball. See Moss when he makes a catch - he'll often drop to the ground before taking contact. Wes is still a superb pick up though. His returns are getting more important too.
  20. Mike the Brit

    Mike the Brit Minuteman Target PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Great thread. One extra point.

    * Ben Watson. Watson only had one catch. But what a catch (and run)! 28 yards up the middle, caught perfectly in stride. As someone who was disappointed that Watson did not contribute more last year, it's a pleasure to see how much he seems to have improved as a pass catcher. Losing him (if the ankle injury proves serious) at just the time when he is playing so well would be cruel.
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