Re: The NEW New England Patriots
- Good analysis, George. There will certainly need to be a change in philosophy, on both sides of the ball. Assuming Gronk misses the start of the season, we will be missing our FIVE top receivers from last year. How often do you see a team deal with that.
The running game has shown great promise. I agree, we have the O-line and the backs to be very successful. It will also take some pressure off Brady. He's no spring chicken anymore. We have some outside speed with Dobson and Boyce, if they can learn the playbook, and earn Tom's confidence. Reports indicate that Jenkins was clicking with Brady pretty well at mini-camp. And let's hope Ballard comes back to form.
Good point about the 'D' as well. We need to be more of a pressure defense, force turnovers, and be especially effective on 3rd down. Again, the horses are there. Would be nice if Collins or Buchanan turned out to be a good find, and we start to excel at QB pressure.
Of course, as always, the biggest afctor is avoiding injury.
Looking forward to the season!
--- In email@example.com, George Richman <patswingr@...> wrote:
> I have no further comment about Aaron Hernandez, because the murdering
> "home boy" isn't worthy of my time.
> We can expect to see a vastly different Patriots team this season, on both
> sides of the ball, for at least the first half of the season.
> There isn't a knowledgeable NFL fan alive who doesn't expect that the 2013
> offense will look nothing like what we've seen from the Patriots over the
> past several seasons. The air will not be filled with footballs, because
> there simply will not be a proven corps of receivers out there to throw
> them to. Training camp will not provide enough practice for Brady to
> develop a the level of comfort and familiarity necessary to run a pass
> heavy offense.
> That said, we should recognize the possibility that Brady and OC McDaniels
> know a great deal about the passing game. IF, over the course of the first
> several games of the season, the nearly totally new corps of receivers
> proves to have the physical talent, and mental acuity, to learn to execute
> what Brady and McDaniels want to do, we could see a more explosive offense
> by the time we finish eating our Thanksgiving dinners. That's not
> impossible; but the odds are so small for it that I'm going to set it aside
> for now.
> So, they'll turn to the run. The good news there is that this team is well
> equipped to run the ball with great success. It begins, always, up front.
> They have a solid OL, made up of talented veterans who have played together
> for varied, but significant periods of time. And they have one of the best
> OL coaches in the NFL to guide them to the changed team strategy.
> Behind them is a corps of equally talented veteran RBs. Ridley and Vereen
> have proven their ability behind this OL; and LaGarrette Blount showed
> plenty of talent and power for much of his time with Tampa Bay. Patriot
> coaches should have no problem getting him to return to his earlier
> What this new offense will mean, however, is that the Patriots will now
> have to focus on long, time consuming drives, to minimize the time their
> opponents will have on the field. And, when the other team does get the
> ball, the defensive objective will have to change from the "bend, but don't
> break" strategy that has, let's face it, frustrated most of us for years;
> to the "shutdown and big play" defense that motivated "snow geysers" for us
> years ago.
> Don't let the opponent eat up time moving the ball down the field; then
> stop them, and get the ball back to score quickly. Because scoring quickly
> will not be the norm for the Patriots offense in 2013. NO! This team has to
> allow the opponent minimum time with the football, to allow our ball
> control offense to move the ball down the field slowly, but steadily, and
> score at the end of drives that last 7-8 minutes.
> Do the Patriots have the players to create that type of defense? There is
> certainly reason to hope that they do. They have star players at starting
> positions in all 3 defensive areas. The DL has Wilfork, Ninkovich, and the
> very promising Chandler Jones. The LB corps has Mayo, Hightower, and the
> steady run stopper, Brandon Spikes. And the secondary has Aquib Talib,
> veteran star Adrian Wilson, McCourty at his best at Free Safety, and
> promising young vets, Dennard and Dowling. Behind this group is a roster of
> young prospects. Only time will tell if they have the talent to fill in the
> blanks effectively around the best the Patriots have.
> The bottom line is that new philosophies and strategies will be needed for
> this team to succeed in 2013. They must replace the "flash and dash" with
> "slow and steady". The finesse must go; and be replaced by "smash mouth
> football" on both sides of the ball. If that doesn't happen, I see little
> hope for the Playoffs, and virtually none for a Super Bowl.
> Now don't go saying I've given up! I've outlined a way that I believe this
> team CAN succeed; and I believe they have the on the field talent and the
> coaching to do so. I'm just pointing out that it's going to be more of a
> challenge than they have faced at any time in the Brady/Belichick era.
> -- George