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What games are most dangerous, most likely losses?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by betterthanthealternative, Sep 9, 2006.

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  1. betterthanthealternative

    betterthanthealternative Rookie

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    I keep seeing predictions of a 10-6 or 9-7 season in the national press, and I just don't see how the schedule provides that many opportunities for losses.

    There are 5 games against (probably) good teams: Broncos, Bears, and Colts at home; Bengals and Jags on the road.

    There are the usual 6 games in the division.

    There are 5 games against (probably) poor teams: Vikings, Packers, Lions, Texans, Titans.

    So if we lose one division game, and both of the road games against good teams, that's only 3 losses. Where do the other three or four come from?

    Is it the Miami hype? Over reactions to the Branch thing? All 5 against the good teams?
  2. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I think it's over reactions to the personnel thing (Vinatieri, Givens, McGinest), the Branch thing and Miami hype coupled with a failure to account for a much easier schedule and the failure to appreciate what the loss of Bruschi/Harrison represented on defense for much of the season and total disregard for the loss of a viable running game due to injury. With a healthy feature back last January we don't start that snowball careening downhill in Denver. And the Denver performance is being totally ignored when it comes to assessing Denver who looked like dog poop in the playoffs. Same could be said for Indy.

    It is just fashionable to predict our demise given any opportunity to. Despite the presence of some outstanding talent on both sides of the ball, our failure to hype it and focus on team has led many of them to conclude that we are trying to prove it can be done without talent, which is not even close to the truth of the matter. So they are setting up to claim the system was only as good as the talent. BB would agree with them, only he still sees sufficient talent remaining where they see nothing but the 3-4 name losses. Which I think means BB always thought we had more talent around here to begin with than the pundits were willing to acknowledge.

    Mostly it's just kneejerk failure to really assess this team and instead make assumptions that they will take a step back even though those assumptions totally ignore some fairly obvious facts. Like the Oline is healthy and improved due to upgraded depth and experience, that the running game has been dramatically upgraded via the draft of Maroney, that the losses at WR are somewhat mitigated by the upgrades to the running game and the depth/talent at TE in the continued presence of a QB adept at taking what he is given, and the addition of Jackson is being dismissed due to his missing the pre season. Add to that when healthy the front 7 is one of the best in the league and what we lack in depth is what every team lacks at worst, and that the DB's cannot be as bad as the were for much of last season because of the return of Harrison and the return of guys like Hobbs and Hawkins who improved that unit late last season even without him.

    I think the 9-10 game prognosticators are just picking a number that represents no better or slightly worse than last season. And if you sat them down and asked them to do a game by game matchup assessment their math would go right out the window.

    I think the loss of Vinatieri will be a concern until Gotti proves it otherwise. But I think unless he is a total bust his performance isn't going to be key to more than a handful of games before then end of the season anyway. I think with this schedule they win 12 games just on principle. The pundits just find it hard to square predicting that while still justifying sufficient angst over the lost names so to speak.
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2006
  3. nhpatsfan54

    nhpatsfan54 Rookie

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    VEGAS ODDS HAVE US WITH 10.5 WINS SAME AS THE DOLTS.
    PATS RULE 12 AND 4 IMO.:rocker:
  4. PlattsFan

    PlattsFan Rookie

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    Prognosticators don't look at a schedule that way, generally. They just make generalized assessments on terms that really have nothing to do with what's really happening.

    The Pats lost a kicker and a couple of solid role players to FA, and a very good WR to idiocy ... well, we all know the basics. I think the Patriots will have truly elite players in Brady and Seymour, and possibilities with Wilfork, Watson, and Maroney. And, more importantly, they have almost no place with a sub-average player. Their O-line as a unit could be tops in the game, as well. They have the most talent in the AFC, by a good margin, imo.

    To me, the dangerous games are the two road games against good teams, the Vikes game (usually one stupid loss a year), and ... uh ... the game in Miami, I guess. That's four. I think they go undefeated at home.

    I predicted 12-4, but I'm starting to think it's 13-3 or, if the injuries aren't too bad, 14-2.

    I'm chugging the Kool-Aid ...
  5. onegameatatime

    onegameatatime Rookie

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    I'm not concerned about the Bears game, but other 4 identified as potentially tough in the first posting could be tough. Then Miami in Miami is always tough. It's not uncommon to have at least one loss that is unpredictable -- e.g., Redskins in 03, Dolphins in 04. (Although last year, there was no loss to a .500 or less team.)
  6. patpatriot

    patpatriot Banned

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    What people are not picking up on is that Miami, while inferior to the Pats, has an even easier schedule raising the posssibility of then tieing our record. IMO, we need to beat Miami twice to preclude that scenario.
  7. hwc

    hwc Rookie

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    The mistake the "pundits" make is focusing on a handful of players on each team and failing to recognize that a winning football team is a collection of 53 contributors.

    Just to make the math easy, let's call it a 50 man roster.

    Thus, you have 50 guys, each contributing 2% of a winning formula. But, let's make our model a bit more realistic. Let's say our 25 starters contribute 4% each and our 25 backups contribute 1% each.

    So we lose Vinateiri. That makes us 4% worse, right? Well, not really because he is being replace by a starting kicker. Will his replacement give us 1%? 3%? 4%? I don't know. But, in the context of the full 100%, it's an incremental difference.

    Does replacing McGinnest with Junior Seau cost you 4%? Or is it a wash?

    What about having Rodney Harrison (4%) back at safety with the backup (1%) returning to a backup role?

    What about having a 4% corner back on the field instead of Hank Poteat (1% or less?).

    What about having our 4% left tackle and 4% center back on the field instead of 1% backups?

    How many percentage points do you pick up with a legitimate feature back, Maroney, to split time with 4% Corey Dillon instead of having to sign a street free agent on Tuesday and start him on Sunday?

    That's why I am more inclined to look at the overall program. For example, I know that the Pittsburgh Steelers are going to put a solid team on the field, with a tough defense, and the experience to win a lot of tough, hard fought games. Why? Because they always do that.

    I know that the Saints and the Raiders are going to suck. I don't care if they have Randy Moss or Reggie Bush. They are bad NFL programs.

    How could anyone in their right mind pick the Colts for the SuperBowl? They had it set up perfectly last January. No injuries. Bye week. Homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. Ready for the taking. And, they spit the bit AGAIN in the playoffs. How many times have they spit the bit? Until proven otherwise, it is only logical to assume that they will continue to choke. It's not like the stars and the moon could align better than last year.
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2006
  8. PatsWickedPissah

    PatsWickedPissah PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Disable Jersey

    Yes.
    I'm sure that this will be a major BB tactical focus. Nice motivational tool the week before December 10th in Miami.
  9. stinkypete

    stinkypete Rookie

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    #24 Jersey

    The thing about Miami is that they should've won on Thursday with Ben out. I think people jumped on the Miami bandwagon recently because Thursday's game suddenly looked like a gift. Now that they've lost, the field looks a bit more level.

    I agree though that sweeping the Fins is essential to ensuring a division title. With their schedule, both teams will be neck and neck all year.
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