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Content Post Idle thoughts

2022 Patriots Season:
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Pick Results: NE: 85% at ARZ: 15%

Mon
Dec 12th
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This has an opening post with good commentary and information, which we definitely recommend reading.

patfanken

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Just a couple of TC thoughts.

These are only just impressions but:

1. The WR is MUCH better than we expected. Parker seems to be everything we hoped him to be. Aghular is playing like we HOPED he would be last year. Meyers is as steady as ever. Thorton seems to have the skills to make him worthy of his pick. btw - I recall looking at a predraft evaluation of Thorton which noted he is a plus blocker, which I thought was an odd comment given his slight build. But so far I've noted a couple of times in the Giants game where Thornton stuck his nose into a defender's chest and WAS a plus blocker..Nixon and Wilkerson have BOTH had a lot of catches so far, and even LJ Humphrey has flashed some this TC. In fact the entire group has been better than we expected, EXCEPT for the guy I thought would be the leader of the group, KBourne. Its still early, but I thought he'd be a 1000 yd receiver this year. Not seeing it yet.

The RB room looks to be as strong as we expected with Stevenson and Harris looking to take a majority of the run game snaps, and Ty Montgomery looking like he will try and fill James White's role with Strong and Harris two guys with vastly different skill sets along for depth.

TE's seem to be OK. Smith and Henry can be two plus TE's and Asiassi has the potential to be a good 3rd.

The OL IS a problem. I don't question the talent, but EVERYONE but Andrews is playing a new position and there is no question that this group is NOT yet playing as a unit. Again there is a lot of time left before the first game, and hopefully this will get better over the next few weeks. It HAS to.

Nothing spectacular to say about the QBing. Jones has been making progress and looks improved like we hoped. Zappe has been a LOT better than I expected, though he most likely finds his way to our PS. Hoyer is Hoyer. The perfect back up. The kind of guy who could manage a team when your top QB goes down for 2 or 3 games. Of course it could wind up the other way around since no one is going to take Hoyer off of waivers since he's making the vet minimum which is a lot, and Zappe makes the 53, with Hoyer coming back if their is an injury. Just a thought.

On the defensive side, I think the outlook is a lot brighter. On the DL Godcheaux is looking like a stud in his 2nd year and the thought of he and Barmore as 2 DT's is exciting indeed, PLUS the fact that Davis, Ray, and Roberts have all popped during this camp bodes well for the depth of this area.

Mac Wilson and McMilan seem to be the real deal and flashed on several occasions. McGrone on the other hand has not. Still I want to give him the benefit of the doubt since this is first action he's seen in 2 years. He should be getting a lot of snaps in the next 2 preseason games. I'm Counting on him getting better. Still a rotation of Wilson, McMillian and Bentley doesn't suck. Getting McGrone playing well would be the icing on the cake.

THe OLB position is looking solid. Judon is proving that the first half of last season wasn't a fluke. But we all wondered who would be the guy on the other side. So far it looks like AJennings who has come back from the virtual DEAD to take the lead for that spot. Uche looks like he has improved his game to be a good situational option and provide depth tor the starters.

The Safeties will be the rock upon which the defense will be built. It has talent that goes 6 deep. It will be flexible with guys like Peppers and Philips who have the size to play in the box plus the speed to cover. Bledsoe has looked like he will compete for snaps. and Jake Eliot looks like we wants Davis's role. And that not even mentioning Kyle Dugger, who might end up being the most impactful of the bunch, OR Devan McCourty,. This is a real good group.

And Finally we come to the CB's So far this group has been the biggest surprise. It's been surprisingly good. Mills who was solid last season, looks like he has stepped up his game and WANTS the #1 role. John Jones has come back from injury and is competing well for the #2 roles with Jack Jones. Sean Wade and MJones look like they are competing for the slot role and Mitchell and Butler are experienced quality depth. One of the biggest questions about this defense going into camp was the CB position and it only shows how much better it looks now with decent proven CB's like Mitchell and Butler are just fighting to make the team.

Now to the reaction to the coaching situation on offense.

I want to concentrate on the OL with Yates and Patricia carrying the responsibility in that area. To my mind this the area that seems to be the most disjointed and clearly NEEDS the most work. Like I said before, there is more than enough talent in this area, both as starters and depth. Cajuste, Herran, Hambright, Dejardins, Ferrentz, etc provide more than enough quality depth to a starting line up of Brown, Strange, Andrews, Owenu, and Wynn. It is just a matter of them becomimg a UNIT. Understand that with the exception of Andrews everyone is not playing the position they were in last year SO issues are to be expected early on. What we NEED to see is incremental improvement as we go on. The Giants game was better than the previous week, and from what I read so far the Carolina scrimmage was a bit better than the Giants game, though Bedard is more down on the OL than I am. LOTS of improvement that needs to happen, so I wouldn't be surprised to see Judge get more of the play calling duties as Matt concentrates on getting the OL straightened out.

Right now THAT is the area of concern for me. We have the talent there to have a STRONG OL and have it be a strength for us. So far it isn't. And THIS will be the area I will be watching closely. We are fine at WR, TE, RB, and QB.
 
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sturmrider

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Happy to see the "Idle Thoughts" return your posts are some of the most informative and interesting. One of the reasons I keep coming back looking forward to a season of hopefully great "Idle Thoughts".

Take care and good luck at the tables.
 

PP2

Hall of Fame Poster
Just a couple of TC thoughts.

These are only just impressions but:

1. The WR is MUCH better than we expected. Parker seems to be everything we hoped him to be. Aghular is playing like we HOPED he would be last year. Meyers is as steady as ever. Thorton seems to have the skills to make him worthy of his pick. btw - I recall looking at a predraft evaluation of Thorton which noted he is a plus blocker, which I thought was an odd comment given his slight build. But so far I've noted a couple of times in the Giants game where Thornton stuck his nose into a defender's chest and WAS a plus blocker..Nixon and Wilkerson have BOTH had a lot of catches so far, and even LJ Humphrey has flashed some this TC. In fact the entire group has been better than we expected, EXCEPT for the guy I thought would be the leader of the group, KBourne. Its still early, but I thought he'd be a 1000 yd receiver this year. Not seeing it yet.

The RB room looks to be as strong as we expected with Stevenson and Harris looking to take a majority of the run game snaps, and Ty Montgomery looking like he will try and fill James White's role with Strong and Harris two guys with vastly different skill sets along for depth.

TE's seem to be OK. Smith and Henry can be two plus TE's and Asiassi has the potential to be a good 3rd.

The OL IS a problem. I don't question the talent, but EVERYONE but Andrews is playing a new position and there is no question that this group is NOT yet playing as a unit. Again there is a lot of time left before the first game, and hopefully this will get better over the next few weeks. It HAS to.

Nothing spectacular to say about the QBing. Jones has been making progress and looks improved like we hoped. Zappe has been a LOT better than I expected, though he most likely finds his way to our PS. Hoyer is Hoyer. The perfect back up. The kind of guy who could manage a team when your top QB goes down for 2 or 3 games. Of course it could wind up the other way around since no one is going to take Hoyer off of waivers since he's making the vet minimum which is a lot, and Zappe makes the 53, with Hoyer coming back if their is an injury. Just a thought.

On the defensive side, I think the outlook is a lot brighter. On the DL Godcheaux is looking like a stud in his 2nd year and the thought of he and Barmore as 2 DT's is exciting indeed, PLUS the fact that Davis, Ray, and Roberts have all popped during this camp bodes well for the depth of this area.

Mac Wilson and McMilan seem to be the real deal and flashed on several occasions. McGrone on the other hand has not. Still I want to give him the benefit of the doubt since this is first action he's seen in 2 years. He should be getting a lot of snaps in the next 2 preseason games. I'm Counting on him getting better. Still a rotation of Wilson, McMillian and Bentley doesn't suck. Getting McGrone playing well would be the icing on the cake.

THe OLB position is looking solid. Judon is proving that the first half of last season wasn't a fluke. But we all wondered who would be the guy on the other side. So far it looks like AJennings who has come back from the virtual DEAD to take the lead for that spot. Uche looks like he has improved his game to be a good situational option and provide depth tor the starters.

The Safeties will be the rock upon which the defense will be built. It has talent that goes 6 deep. It will be flexible with guys like Peppers and Philips who have the size to play in the box plus the speed to cover. Bledsoe has looked like he will compete for snaps. and Jake Eliot looks like we wants Davis's role. And that not even mentioning Kyle Dugger, who might end up being the most impactful of the bunch, OR Devan McCourty,. This is a real good group.

And Finally we come to the CB's So far this group has been the biggest surprise. It's been surprisingly good. Mills who was solid last season, looks like he has stepped up his game and WANTS the #1 role. John Jones has come back from injury and is competing well for the #2 roles with Jack Jones. Sean Wade and MJones look like they are competing for the slot role and Mitchell and Butler are experienced quality depth. One of the biggest questions about this defense going into camp was the CB position and it only shows how much better it looks now with decent proven CB's like Mitchell and Butler are just fighting to make the team.

Now to the reaction to the coaching situation on offense.

I want to concentrate on the OL with Yates and Patricia carrying the responsibility in that area. To my mind this the area that seems to be the most disjointed and clearly NEEDS the most work. Like I said before, there is more than enough talent in this area, both as starters and depth. Cajuste, Herran, Hambright, Dejardins, Ferrentz, etc provide more than enough quality depth to a starting line up of Brown, Strange, Andrews, Owenu, and Wynn. It is just a matter of them becomimg a UNIT. Understand that with the exception of Andrews everyone is not playing the position they were in last year SO issues are to be expected early on. What we NEED to see is incremental improvement as we go on. The Giants game was better than the previous week, and from what I read so far the Carolina scrimmage was a bit better than the Giants game, though Bedard is more down on the OL than I am. LOTS of improvement that needs to happen, so I wouldn't be surprised to see Judge get more of the play calling duties as Matt concentrates on getting the OL straightened out.

Right now THAT is the area of concern for me. We have the talent there to have a STRONG OL and have it be a strength for us. So far it isn't. And THIS will be the area I will be watching closely. We are fine at WR, TE, RB, and QB.

Good post, Ken.

Thanks.
 

One-If-By-Sea

In the Starting Line-Up
New coach who has never coached an O-line before, new blocking patterns (to some extent at least) and all except Andrews and the rookie playing in a new position. It's a wonder it's working at all.

Who is the new coach that has never coached an O-line before?
 

SlowGettingUp

Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job
Who is the new coach that has never coached an O-line before?
The O-line coach is Matt Patricia, who I don't believe has coached an O-line before. Yates is his assistant, and he has some experience (in 2020 was Lions assistant O-Line coach). I don't think either have much experience in Shanahan-type systems.
 

Brotherblues

Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job
New coach who has never coached an O-line before, new blocking patterns (to some extent at least) and all except Andrews and the rookie playing in a new position. It's a wonder it's working at all.
And none of them is playing next to someone they played with last year on either side of them.
 

Zuma

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Great post Ken. The O-line needs a lot of reps and continuity...especially with those that are expected to start...I think that will help a lot. I'm not 100% convinced the DL will stop the run on a reasonable consistent basis. I still think they should try to sign Flowers.
 

SEPatsFan

Practice Squad Player
The O-line coach is Matt Patricia, who I don't believe has coached an O-line before. Yates is his assistant, and he has some experience (in 2020 was Lions assistant O-Line coach). I don't think either have much experience in Shanahan-type systems.

Patricia played O-Line in college, and coached on the offensive side, and line specifically, early in his first stint with the Patriots.
 

Toofy

Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job
Maybe the OL needs 5-8 more weeks to get up to speed. So we start slow for first 5 weeks . 2 wins would be a huge achievement and should hold us better for the longer haul and for a change we would get better as the season progresses and become battle hardened for the playoffs.

I am thinking Run defense would be pretty decent and I hope Carl davis is also healthy. Him and godchaux should cause some problems upfront and with Jennings , Judon and Barmore we should be able to pass rush more effectively and reduce the QB pocket time making it easier for our secondary .

With safety being super solid we could limit the bigger plays.

The key issue I see is how is our run game going to perform because of OL issues . That could negatively impact what Rham and Harris could do to opposing defenses .

If OL is WIP I see Meyers and Jonnu playing a big role.
 

One-If-By-Sea

In the Starting Line-Up
The O-line coach is Matt Patricia, who I don't believe has coached an O-line before. Yates is his assistant, and he has some experience (in 2020 was Lions assistant O-Line coach). I don't think either have much experience in Shanahan-type systems.

In 2020 Patricia was the Lions head coach. In college (Div III) Patricia played on the O-line. In 2005 Patricia was the Patriots O-line assistant coach working under Dante Scarnecchia. So Patricia has experience having played on the O-line and has coached the O-line. Last year the O-line was not great, I think you will see the O-line is better this year, even after learning the zone blocking scheme.
 

patfanken

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New coach who has never coached an O-line before, new blocking patterns (to some extent at least) and all except Andrews and the rookie playing in a new position. It's a wonder it's working at all.
your pen name is appropriate. Patricia was an OLman for 4 years in college and started his coaching career with the Pats as an OL assistant.

Coaches can coach. They all go to the same clinics and hear the same lectures and CONSTANTLY learn from each other. If Matt Patricia was good enough to rise from and OL assistant to a HC in the NFL over 20 odd years, he has proven he is a teacher AND a leader. I am confident he can get across the concepts that Bill wants to see happening on the OL. As for whether he can call the offensive plays come game time, we shall see.
 

patfanken

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this is obviously a bridge year...they've decided to run the Shanahan offensive system. This will take all season to iron out the kinks and maybe more.
Are you sure its a full move to the Shanahan system or the incorporation of some of its facets. I suggest you read that rather long article that explained IN DETAIL why that isn't the case based on what the author saw in the Giants game. Worth the read.

But I agree its hopefully a gap year until BOB arrives.
 

DarrylS

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I get most of my Pats info from insufferable sportstalk radio (who make ever effort to create controversy), however none of that info compares to the intelligent football insight and game analysis you provide.

Instead of whining about coaching staff and who is inadequate/adequate, your insights are always well thought out and something I anticipate during the season. As always I laud your efforts and encourage you to keep it up. Your comments plus what my eyeballs tell me from TC helps me understand this team better.

Couple of comments from what I have seen of Bailey Zappe may be a keeper as he is much better than I expected, he will need some time& work of course, but he will probably be a solid back up. Also not sure about BOB coming back to the Pats, he may have found a long term home in the Alabama system.
 
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Scotty

In the Starting Line-Up
Is TE going a bit under the radar ? Hunter Henry was withdrawn yesterday and Jonnu is trying to get back some form and more of an attacking presence. Behind those two is not a lot. Historically I have been pro Asiasi to come good but it is still slow. Maybe the improvement in the WR's has taken the spotlight off the TE's ???

Maybe the Panthers game will see some action from them ?
 


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