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Wednesday Patriots Notebook 9/30: Jaguars Second-Guessing Their Strategy

Ian Logue
Ian Logue on Twitter
6 years ago at 9:01 am ET
Posted Under: Patriots News

Wednesday Patriots Notebook 9/30: Jaguars Second-Guessing Their StrategyKevin Hoffman - USA TODAY Sports

Up 44-10 early in the fourth quarter, the Patriots had just scored a touchdown thanks to 1-yard run by LeGarrette Blount to give them a comfortable 34 point lead against a team that, unlike Buffalo a week earlier, was showing no signs of coming back in.

However, most were surprised that Jimmy Garoppolo didn’t get any live snaps when Brady came back out with 13:18 to go.  Garoppolo remained on the sidelines while Brady put together a 17 play, 58yd drive that ended with another 1-yard touchdown run by Blount.

On paper, the move worked out because it was another big scoring drive that ate up 9:47 and put New England up 51-10 with Jacksonville having merely a little over three minutes to score 41 points.  But on that drive Brady was sacked, and they’re fortunate that it was just another play for New England’s quarterback.  However, former Patriots safety Rodney Harrison wants Belichick to take his starting quarterback out a little sooner during games they’re ahead with a substantial margin.

“I understand Bill [Belichick] and he’s always preaching finish, 60 minutes, never mentally come out of the game and make sure you’re in tune for 60 minutes — I get it,” Harrison said via WEEI.com. “But, at the same time, the Patriots are a hated team. The thing that scares me when I am watching in the viewing room, I’m watching nine games at once, I’m just looking for one of these guys to take a cheap shot, something like, I’m not saying Ben Roethlisberger‘s hit was a cheap shot at all, I thought it was a clean hit, I thought the guy tripped.

“But, I don’t want to see Brady, when you’re up 30 or 40 points, or whatever in the game and a situation where he could get injured or Rob Gronkowski going across the middle, or Edelman and one of those linebackers or DB’s taking a cheap shot. I understand what Bill is going for and maybe they are trying to put up numbers and trying to pad his stats, but at the same time you have to be smart, you have to understand it’s not a 16, 17 week season for these guys. You know they are heading to the playoffs. You know they are going to be right there in the AFC battle — I would say preserve them. Make sure you take them out of the game and get some of these other guys some experience.”

The only issue may be convincing Brady to sit and so far from what we’ve seen, every snap seems to mean the world to him.  As a result, Garoppolo may not get many opportunities this season.

ANDREWS CONTINUES TO LEARN:

With second-year center Bryan Stork still sidelined until at least Week 9 with a head injury, David Andrews has performed about as well as could be expected so far, making him one of the bigger surprises on a team that really have been fortunate when it comes to guys up front on the offensive lines coming through.

One of the things Andrews has been appreciate of is the patience Brady has shown so far, and he’s enjoyed working with both quarterbacks.

“It’s great playing with Tom and Jimmy (backup quarterback Garoppolo) too, they both do a great job at what they do,” Andrews said via the Portland Press Herald. “It’s just good to have guys that are approachable – both those guys. Any time I’ve had a question I know I’ve felt comfortable going to ask them.”

He’s enjoyed the challenge so far and with plenty of football left, he knows he still have plenty of work ahead of him.

“I know there’s a lot that I’ve got to work on,” Andrews said. “Fortunately there’s a lot of good players around me to make up for my mistakes.”

PATRIOTS OFFENSIVE LINE ROTATIONS “GENIUS”:

One of the areas that has been discussed quite a bit through three games this season is the fact the Patriots have been doing some interesting things as it pertains to their in-game rotation of offensive linemen.

New England has been moving guys around series-by-series in some cases, with Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald pointing out that the moves have been so fast and furious that against the Steelers, the Patriots didn’t use the same line combination on back-to-back series until their sixth and seventh possessions.  The only time they’ve used the same players for any stretch was when they opened with the same combination for three consecutive series against the Bills, which is the only time it’s happened all season.

“It’s not done just randomly. There’s a specific reason why we rotate guys when we do, where we rotate them,” DeGuglielmo told the Herald. “There’s a rhyme and reason to everything.”

It’s done a great job of keeping guys fresh and obviously considering the way the offense has played thus far there’s no reason to argue with the results and there are other coaches in the sport taking notice.

“I think it’s one of the smartest things I’ve ever seen,” legendary Florida State offensive line coach Rick Trickett told the Herald.

“It’s genius.”

Hopefully it keeps working because the Patriots have certainly been impressive so far.

BOSTIC HAPPY TO BE HERE:

Following the trade on Monday that sent a sixth-round pick to Chicago to bring Bostic to New England, it’s interesting to learn that apparently he was on New England’s radar back in 2013.

According to the Boston Herald, the Patriots visited Florida to scout him and liked what they saw, but Bostic was snatched up by the Bears with the 50th pick of the second round, two spots ahead of New England who ultimately took Jamie Collins.

Bostic told reporters Tuesday that he took note of Belichick’s visit and it stuck with him.

“They came down to Florida, I knew obviously that they were a team that definitely likes Florida guys,” Bostic said via the Herald. “At some point in your career — whether it’s at the beginning, in the middle, or at the end — they could be interested.”

Obviously they still were and although it’s tough to argue what they got by taking Collins, at just 24-years old if Bostic can live up to his expectations, he could become an interesting player to watch.

JAGUARS FEEL CHANGE IN DEFENSIVE PHILOSOPHY HURT:

Down in Jacksonville the Jaguars are still reeling from the beating they took at the hands of the Patriots Sunday and one reason that apparently sticks out was their change from playing man-to-man to playing zone against New England’s potent offense.

As they sat down to watch the film after they got back, watching the Patriots pick them apart was apparently quite a learning experience for several players, who feel they should have been more aggressive.

“We should’ve played man a little bit more,” Jaguars free safety James Sample told the Florida Times-Union. “That would’ve helped us out. After watching the film, they were picking us apart with short routes and zone beaters. I felt like I learned a lot from that tape.”

However, one thing that obviously stuck out was how good Brady is and Jaguars Dan Skuta acknowledged that.

“There were times watching the film when (defensive end) Ryan (Davis) and I were both flying off the edge,” Skuta said. “Their guys barely got a hand on us. Still, he quickly threw the ball and gained 10 yards. Sometimes it’s just Brady.”

EASLEY LOOKS HEALTHY:

Patriots defensive lineman Dominique Easley returned to the line-up Sunday after missing two weeks and played the most snaps of any other defensive tackle with 32, and he told the Boston Herald that he felt pretty good.

“It felt good,” Easley said of his return. “Getting the win was the most important thing.”

He’s one of the few players who will benefit from the early bye week as he got to return for one game and will now have another week off to rest for when the Patriots travel to Dallas.


Posted Under: Patriots News


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