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Half Way Through The Season: State Of The Patriots

 
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NextBigThing


Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 22782
Location: Beat Of My Own Drum
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 1:38 pm    Post subject: Half Way Through The Season: State Of The Patriots Reply with quote

Obviously an up and down season. Volmer, Wilfork, and Mayo all seemingly done for the season. Brady having his worst season perhaps of his career. Rookies all experiencing a major learning curve. All pro type Aqib Talib hurt. Gronk and Amendola missing major time. In general, they have looked sloppy at best for most of the season, with spurts looking good/great and an equal amount of spurts looking down right ugly. The past game, imo, featuerd both the worst an best halves of football they have played all season.

Yet they stand at 6-2, having weathered the most difficult part of their schedule. Though tough match ups with 7-1 Broncos, and the Browns - who SHOULD have defeated the 8-0 Chiefs yesterday, the Pats seem poised for a top AFC seed. What do you anticipate in the 2nd half?

Some things I expect...
-Greatly increased role for Steven Ridley. Looked good in past 3 weeks, certainly expecting them to feature him more as weeks come. Ridleys athleticism is worlds better than the other backs on this team, only a matter of time until he is getting his 20+ touch games.

-Greatly increased role for Aaron Dobson. Rookie has obviously overtaken Thompkins, and had been getting open all season. Hand issues seem to be a thing of the past over last few games and he certainly seems to be getting on the same page with Brady.

-Lessened role for Amendola/Edleman/Thompkins, increased role for Collie. Collie played on over 40% of snaps, more than Thompkins. Dola should continue t play if he is healthy, but not expecting him to be a featured part of too many games going forward with Dobson and Gronk both healthy.

-Increased presence from Logan Ryan. Talib Dennard Ryan Arrington and McCourtey if needed. Easily the best our secondary has looked in years.

-Spikes to continue run game dominance. The most one dimensional defender perhaps in football, but he is arguably the best line backer against the run football.

The Patriots have been late blooming teams in recent years, with 2nd half play clearly trumping first half play in 2008, 2010, 2011, and 2012. Will the same be true in 2013? For as sloppy as they have played & all the injuries they have experienced, I still think this team has more overall potential than any other Pats team, 2004 and 2007 withstanding, due to overall offensive talent and the elite play of the secondary thus far.
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Deadpulse


Joined: 16 Oct 2008
Posts: 8883
Location: Boston MA
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I feel like this season from week one has been the fans biding our time waiting for health to catch up to us and right the ship, and slowly as our offense (the source of all our frustrations) is getting healthy the unsung heroes on defense get more and more injured. The fallacy in our little waiting game is that the offense will never be as good as it was last year, even once Gronk is fully acclimated and Vereen is back. Hernandez made that big of a difference and as much as Amendola should be Welker 2.0 he just isn't save for a gutty week 1. As much talent as Dobson and KT have, their advantages over Lloyd don't show through because of a lack of consistency. They add a dimension that with inconsistency on both their and Brady's part when throwing the deep ball. Slowly we have all begun to realize that our success relies on defense and running game as we run out of excuses for Brady's worst statistical season since becoming a full time starter.

So the state of this team is that everything is a garble, an unpredictable mess that has enough variables for one or two to shine each week enough to churn out messy wins. Sometimes KT or Dobson will turn it on. Sometimes Brady will put on his cape. Sometimes the running game will pay huge dividends, and sometimes the defense will make all the plays.
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Dalton


Joined: 16 Mar 2010
Posts: 2727
Location: Illinois
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Deadpulse wrote:
I feel like this season from week one has been the fans biding our time waiting for health to catch up to us and right the ship, and slowly as our offense (the source of all our frustrations) is getting healthy the unsung heroes on defense get more and more injured. The fallacy in our little waiting game is that the offense will never be as good as it was last year, even once Gronk is fully acclimated and Vereen is back. Hernandez made that big of a difference and as much as Amendola should be Welker 2.0 he just isn't save for a gutty week 1. As much talent as Dobson and KT have, their advantages over Lloyd don't show through because of a lack of consistency. They add a dimension that with inconsistency on both their and Brady's part when throwing the deep ball. Slowly we have all begun to realize that our success relies on defense and running game as we run out of excuses for Brady's worst statistical season since becoming a full time starter.

So the state of this team is that everything is a garble, an unpredictable mess that has enough variables for one or two to shine each week enough to churn out messy wins. Sometimes KT or Dobson will turn it on. Sometimes Brady will put on his cape. Sometimes the running game will pay huge dividends, and sometimes the defense will make all the plays.


Couldn't have said it better myself. +1

Applause
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I_GET_SAX


Joined: 17 Nov 2012
Posts: 6108
Location: The Granite State
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That second paragraph by Deadpulse pretty much nails everything I think about our W-L and quest so far. The injuries have certainly come at rough times and honestly could not have happened to more important players on the defense (Mayo/Wilfork/Kelley) and keys to our offense in (Vereen/Gronk recovering/ Amendola). Mix that with the dropsies and we have a queasy and unpredictable season so far.
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