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Indefinite New England Patriots Thread

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10 hours ago, TheWinz said:

Just pointing out that NE does have a glaring weakness.  But yes, if any coaching staff can mask weaknesses, it's BB

I still can't rule out BB in the playoffs but I'm willing to admit that he has his toughest challenge in the last 15 years. His offense is completely inept and I'm not sure the defense is talented enough to overcome that.  

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19 minutes ago, fred_1_15301 said:

I still can't rule out BB in the playoffs but I'm willing to admit that he has his toughest challenge in the last 15 years. His offense is completely inept and I'm not sure the defense is talented enough to overcome that.  

If anyone can do it, it will be Belichick.  Unreal how much he has masked the deficiencies on defense. They have basically faced three really good/great offenses this season, and two of them have taken them to the woodshed (and the third had a bad day due to awful rain). 

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20 hours ago, Bossman said:

LOL ... from a NFC East / Cowboys fan?

How does your foot taste?

Hardly a fair comparison.....the eagles, cowboys, and giants have at least been relevant in the last decade.....when was the last time the Jets, bills, Phins were relevant, at all?

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1 hour ago, Manster said:

Hardly a fair comparison.....the eagles, cowboys, and giants have at least been relevant in the last decade.....when was the last time the Jets, bills, Phins were relevant, at all?

I think he meant that one of these supposedly "weak" AFC East teams that hands the Patriots 2 wins every year just went into Dallas and beat the doors off the Cowboys.

Not to mention one of the others just knocked out the Iggles.

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1 hour ago, Dizzy said:

I think he meant that one of these supposedly "weak" AFC East teams that hands the Patriots 2 wins every year just went into Dallas and beat the doors off the Cowboys.

Not to mention one of the others just knocked out the Iggles.

Buffalo looks to be on the right path  finally, Fitzmagic gives the fins a punchers chance to win 7/8 games, but they aren't going anywhere fast, in fact since they got their wins, they should play Rosen to finish out the string, just killing their draft spot.

 

Back to the pats, Ill believe they are dead when the clock strikes 00:00 and they don't have more points then whomever they are playing. They have cracks this year sure and if they have to play Baltimore on the road in the playoffs that would be tough. But I don't think KC or Houston are winning in Foxborough in January. 

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Seems like the offense continues running the same plays expecting different results.

Very predictable with the run on 1st, run on 2nd, and pass on 3rd down last night. At least for the first few series.

What ever happened to the screen pass that they used so effectively so often? I haven't seen a screen pass in the last 3 games.

Each week we're expecting them to figure it out with the new additions and dial it in .... and each week they come out with the same stagnant plays that haven't been working.

I put much of the blame on McDaniels.

 

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4 hours ago, Bossman said:

Seems like the offense continues running the same plays expecting different results.

Very predictable with the run on 1st, run on 2nd, and pass on 3rd down last night. At least for the first few series.

What ever happened to the screen pass that they used so effectively so often? I haven't seen a screen pass in the last 3 games.

Each week we're expecting them to figure it out with the new additions and dial it in .... and each week they come out with the same stagnant plays that haven't been working.

I put much of the blame on McDaniels.

 

+1. Watching other teams run plays this weekend then the lack of creativity in NE was jarring. Same plays same results is accurate. 

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BB playing his best rope a dope of his career. The pats are still getting a bye week and home field for at least one game. 

It's possible they lose 2 more games, more likely they'll end up 13-3.  Buffalo the second time should be interesting, it seems the division could be on the line. 

But they'll probably pull their #### together and make another playoff run. 

 

I do laugh a little at their willingness to play kicker by committee this year. 

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10 hours ago, tombonneau said:

+1. Watching other teams run plays this weekend then the lack of creativity in NE was jarring. Same plays same results is accurate. 

I wonder if we're thinking of the same play. I forget what game I was watching ... maybe Vikings?

3rd and 2 or so, 2 RB's in the backfield so yes, threat to run it vs empty, ... the ball is snapped, both RB's take off left and the QB rolls with them.

The RB's maintained about a 5 yd spread between them as they got to the LOS, QB stayed about 7 yards back, ... and the defense didn't have enough free players to cover both of them.

QB made the easy toss to the open guy who scooted for the first down. They made it look so easy.

vs Brady forcing the pass to a double teamed Edleman or some other well covered option. 

 

And again last night, watching SEA run 6 OL all night. That was well done and would make sense for NE to do if they want to be the run first team that they're trying to be.

Would also give Brady more time in the pocket I would think.

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9 minutes ago, Bossman said:

I wonder if we're thinking of the same play. I forget what game I was watching ... maybe Vikings?

3rd and 2 or so, 2 RB's in the backfield so yes, threat to run it vs empty, ... the ball is snapped, both RB's take off left and the QB rolls with them.

The RB's maintained about a 5 yd spread between them as they got to the LOS, QB stayed about 7 yards back, ... and the defense didn't have enough free players to cover both of them.

QB made the easy toss to the open guy who scooted for the first down. They made it look so easy.

vs Brady forcing the pass to a double teamed Edleman or some other well covered option. 

 

And again last night, watching SEA run 6 OL all night. That was well done and would make sense for NE to do if they want to be the run first team that they're trying to be.

Would also give Brady more time in the pocket I would think.

I didn't see that play but sounds like exactly the kind thing they used to draw up on the regular. Might be time for Josh to head off and run another franchise into the ground. 

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4 hours ago, Bossman said:

And again last night, watching SEA run 6 OL all night. That was well done and would make sense for NE to do if they want to be the run first team that they're trying to be.

Would also give Brady more time in the pocket I would think.

The Pats can't keep 5 OL healthy, where are they going to find a 6th?

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The biggest issue for the NE offense is that the offense really hasn't had much chance to gel and play / practice together. The wide receivers keep changing, the OL has had multiple injuries, a bunch of guys have been in an out of the lineup, and they have rookies and new players trying to learn on the fly.

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On 12/3/2019 at 6:06 AM, -OZ- said:

BB playing his best rope a dope of his career. The pats are still getting a bye week and home field for at least one game. 

It's possible they lose 2 more games, more likely they'll end up 13-3.  Buffalo the second time should be interesting, it seems the division could be on the line. 

But they'll probably pull their #### together and make another playoff run. 

 

I do laugh a little at their willingness to play kicker by committee this year. 

This is exactly what I'm thinking.  Why play for real when you can practice the basics against live fire?  Then in January throw out all the wrinkles that an actual offense uses.

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This is a huge game for the Patriots. The idea that going 0-3 in a 5-week span vs the AFC’s other divisional leaders would be a gambit to prep for the playoffs strikes me as highly wishful thinking 

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9 hours ago, The_Man said:

This is a huge game for the Patriots. The idea that going 0-3 in a 5-week span vs the AFC’s other divisional leaders would be a gambit to prep for the playoffs strikes me as highly wishful thinking 

Perhaps.

Or maybe it's basically preseason for the Pats.

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Last year the Pats went 11--5, losing back-to-back games twice. These losses were against "powerhouse" teams like Jacksonville, Detroit, Tennessee, Miami, and Pittsburgh. NONE OF THOSE TEAMS EVEN MADE THE PLAYOFFS!! Losses to Miami/Pitts came in December... GASP!!! Season turned out OK... 😉

Losing on the road to Baltimore and Houston... eh, not so bad in the grand scheme of things. We all need to chill.

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58 minutes ago, Dizzy said:

Ah the beginning of the end... finally! :headbang:

Lol.  Its an off year for the oline and ball catchers (bye Gronk, hello and bye AB) made worse by two fullbacks on IR after Gronk and Allen left.

I'm not as optimistic about the remainder of 2019 as some of my brethren, but throwing dirt on the evil empire might be a tad premature.

 

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15 minutes ago, SeniorVBDStudent said:

Lol.  Its an off year for the oline and ball catchers (bye Gronk, hello and bye AB) made worse by two fullbacks on IR after Gronk and Allen left.

I'm not as optimistic about the remainder of 2019 as some of my brethren, but throwing dirt on the evil empire might be a tad premature.

 

Maybe, but looks pretty simple to me... no Gronk... aging QB... double Edelman, spy White, done.

I'm not afraid to bury them. Changing of the guard in the AFC East... FINALLY! :D

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Looking for a new Kicker - been watching NE to see who they pick up.  Waivers are closing soon in my league so has to be done soon.

I've got Tucker by the way, he's an elite kicker, but !@#$ has Lamar as his QB, so they keep going for it on 4th and whatever in FG range so Tucker's pretty much only getting the XP's.  LOL

 

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26 minutes ago, She Caw Go Tears said:

Looking for a new Kicker - been watching NE to see who they pick up.  Waivers are closing soon in my league so has to be done soon.

I've got Tucker by the way, he's an elite kicker, but !@#$ has Lamar as his QB, so they keep going for it on 4th and whatever in FG range so Tucker's pretty much only getting the XP's.  LOL

 

I'm very curious who NE picks up for this week, too. Would love any homer insights...

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56 minutes ago, Grigs Allmoon said:

I'm very curious who NE picks up for this week, too. Would love any homer insights...

They tried to get the guy the Niners cut but couldn’t. Looks like Folk will most likely be coming back. They never cleared out his locker.

Edited by Anarchy99

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1 hour ago, Anarchy99 said:

They tried to get the guy the Niners cut but couldn’t. Looks like Folk will most likely be coming back. They never cleared out his locker.

Per Reiss, the Patriots must now decide whether to sign another kicker in advance of Week 13 action, or alternatively, employ punter Jake Bailey as a short-term replacement for Folk.  (from CBS Sports)

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I don't buy for one minute that Pats are "saving it" for the playoffs. They've never had to "save it" any other year. Why would they now and sacrifice draft seeding?

Not one screen pass that I can remember in the last 3 games.

Think about that. What once was a staple of their offense. What changed?

Are defenses cheating up at the line to stop the run / short passes? They don't even attempt it anymore. 

Edited by Bossman

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On 12/5/2019 at 5:01 PM, Grigs Allmoon said:

I'm very curious who NE picks up for this week, too. Would love any homer insights...

Pats said to be re-signing Folk. 

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5 minutes ago, kodycutter said:

Spygate 2?

The bengals? Of all teams that's who they videotape?

 

Maybe they needed some comic relief after that loss. Nothing would make your team laugh more than Taylor dialing up stupid pass plays from the 2 yard line when Joe Mixon is gashing the D at a 6.3 ypc clip.

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49 minutes ago, kodycutter said:

Spygate 2?

The bengals? Of all teams that's who they videotape?

 

Supposedly the NFL has the actual video. I wonder if they'll delete it.

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Brady seems to have a man crush on Lamar Jackson. Buddied up to him before the Sunday Night game and then tweeting during this a Thursday’s game about racing him in a 40

All of which I find ironic because the Patriots were very interested in drafting Lamar and I doubt Brady would be treating him nearly this well if he was a teammate and his heir apparent 

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Passer rating on throws to players covered by Stephon Gilmore: 14.5.
25 completions on 67 attempts (37%) for 283 yards. 0 TD, 6 INT.

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On 12/15/2019 at 8:19 PM, Anarchy99 said:

Passer rating on throws to players covered by Stephon Gilmore: 14.5.
25 completions on 67 attempts (37%) for 283 yards. 0 TD, 6 INT.

I see you found one thing to hang your hat on.

Defense is good but not great. Bungles actually moved the ball pretty well with the exception of Dalton giving up some easy INT's.

Was still a game before he melted down.

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On 12/5/2019 at 9:18 PM, Bossman said:

I don't buy for one minute that Pats are "saving it" for the playoffs. They've never had to "save it" any other year. Why would they now and sacrifice draft seeding?

Not one screen pass that I can remember in the last 3 games.

Think about that. What once was a staple of their offense. What changed?

Are defenses cheating up at the line to stop the run / short passes? They don't even attempt it anymore. 

So I finally got the screen pass that I've been begging for for 4 weeks.

White scurries to the end zone for 7.

McDaniels "Well THAT worked. I'll be sure not to call THAT play again today."

Honestly, what in the world is wrong with this guy?

1 TD in the first half ... vs the BENGALS!

I get it. Brady's elbow. Offensive line. Edelman still with ribs / knee. Crappy WR's. No Gronkowski. But c'mon. The Bengals?

Time Pats fan comes to grips with the fact that this is what we got and it's not going to turn around with the flip of a switch when playoffs start.

Better hope they can win some games 20 to 17  ... but I just don't see them able to hold KC, BAL, to that low of a score.

Great measuring stick Saturday against a playoff team. 

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9 minutes ago, Bossman said:

I see you found one thing to hang your hat on.

Defense is good but not great. Bungles actually moved the ball pretty well with the exception of Dalton giving up some easy INT's.

Was still a game before he melted down.

I don’t put much stock in a game against the Bengals, but after the first 2 drives for CIN they never got back in the red zone. Dalton ended the game with a 39 passer rating. I never thought the game was ever in doubt, but if you want to say it was still a game so be it. 

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On 12/5/2019 at 4:26 PM, Anarchy99 said:

They tried to get the guy the Niners cut but couldn’t. Looks like Folk will most likely be coming back. They never cleared out his locker.

 Was  it Chase McLaughlin signed by the Colts?  I wonder if he will be the Colts kicker in 2020.  Adam V needs to ride off into the sunset.  Will he retire a Patriot or a Colt?  Tough to tell.  His Patriots glory is well documented, but he played longer with the Colts and won a SB with them too.  I wouldn't blame him for either decision actually.

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5 hours ago, Anarchy99 said:

I don’t put much stock in a game against the Bengals, but after the first 2 drives for CIN they never got back in the red zone. Dalton ended the game with a 39 passer rating. I never thought the game was ever in doubt, but if you want to say it was still a game so be it. 

I think that the Patriots have a growing problem stopping the run. Teams are doubling Shelton inside and the Pats are struggling to set the edge at times. It's starting to show and Belichick will need to adjust heading into the postseason.

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2 minutes ago, Workhorse said:

I think that the Patriots have a growing problem stopping the run. Teams are doubling Shelton inside and the Pats are struggling to set the edge at times. It's starting to show and Belichick will need to adjust heading into the postseason.

NE needs to get the game script back in their favor. Lately, they have been giving up points early and struggling offensively . . . which will spell doom against a running team with a good defense. If they can go back to getting stops / turnovers / some offense and points early, that would go a long way.

While the offense has been struggling, there are reasons for that. While the offense won't be "fixed," they may get a little better. Everyone on offense has been banged up (which makes getting a bye absolutely imperative). And since that has been the case, the offense hasn't really had a chance to gel. So the offense in mid-December looks like the NE offense typically looks earlier in the season. 

I don't know how hurt guys are and if they can get any healthier. That's a tough call, as guys that are nicked up could easily stay nicked up. Part of the issue is Brady hasn't been able to practice much, so the chemistry issues have persisted and lasted way longer than they should have. I also put a lot on McDaniels, as he should be able to better scheme ways to get people open or give bit players some routes that should be open.

What could save NE down the road is that the projected playoff teams as of today (BAL, KC, HOU, BUF, PIT),  the other QB's have accounted for only one playoff win (Mahomes). If the NE offense can get one drive for a TD and one drive for a FG (to go along with big plays or short fields from the defense), I think they could win games score 17-21 points.

Of their three losses, the most disconcerting was the Texans game. They were never really in that game and some garbage time production made the score look closer than it really was. However, on the flip side, I think the Ravens game was a lot closer than the final score indicated. NE was about to take the lead in the second half when Edelman fumbled and swung the score by 14 points on one play. NE also committed several dumb penalties at the worst times (which they rarely do). In the KC game, they were right there and if not for some poor calls they could have won that game.

So I think in a few weeks and some improvement on offense (like to average levels not to prior NE offense levels), NE would win a rematch against KC or HOU in NE. I doubt they would beat BAL in BAL, but I didn't think they would beat KC in KC last year (so who knows). I also think that a team like BUF or PIT might be able to do better against the Ravens than the Pats would. Maybe one of those teams wins in the divisional round (say BUF over HOU) to set up the chance for an upset of the Ravens. I doubt a wildcard team would be able to beat both KC and BAL, so that likely won't happen.

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Have faith, one game at a time. No one does it better and they have held back some cards, other areas are heading towards success, the defense is excellent. Playoff bound, let them all write us off, it's over... hehehe

 

I will agree that the one guy who has gotten too much of a pass is McDaniels, he has flat out sucked at times, but also ok to flounder a bit when your 10-1. He needs to step it up and attack defenses, arial attack. It's going to happen.

Edited by AngryPatriot

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34 minutes ago, AngryPatriot said:

Have faith, one game at a time. No one does it better and they have held back some cards, other areas are heading towards success, the defense is excellent. Playoff bound, let them all write us off, it's over... hehehe

I will agree that the one guy who has gotten too much of a pass is McDaniels, he has flat out sucked at times, but also ok to flounder a bit when your 10-1. He needs to step it up and attack defenses, arial attack. It's going to happen.

What I think is funny is the sports media talking heads have been beating up the Pats for their inability to run the football. Then they have a game where they average almost 6 yards a carry running the ball for 177 yards and all those guys did this week was complain that Brady had the lowest passing total of the season.

I also love hearing how stupid NE was in trading for Sanu and not Sanders. But no one wants to talk about how little time Brady has to throw and Sanders has been running deeper and more time consuming routes. Folks just want to transfer his 7 catches for 160 yards and a TD to the NE stat sheet like it was guaranteed production.

I know there are a lot of IF's for the offense, but if they start using Harry more, if Edelman can get a little healthier, if Sanu's ankle heals up, if they remember Dorsett is still on the team (10 catches in the last 6 games and only 2 catches for 15 yards in the last 3 games), the offense should be able to score in the teens. Add in a score or great field position from the defense and they should be able to score 17-21 points if not more.

I do agree, though, that their margin for error is slim and they have to rely on the defense bringing their A game or they will be in trouble come the playoffs. If they beat BUF and MIA, that would still give them 4 weeks to get a little healthy and the offense a little more in rhythm.

And as a side note, has a team rostered two more troubled wide receivers in the same season than NE did with AB and Gordon?

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Losing Devlin and Andrews has really hurt this team. Not replacing Gronk was short-sighted, I still don't understand why you basically give away Hollister with nothing else at TE. AB with his head on straight would have made a huge difference. It's going to be tough to win at Baltimore with the current roster.

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5 minutes ago, Casting Couch said:

Losing Devlin and Andrews has really hurt this team. Not replacing Gronk was short-sighted, I still don't understand why you basically give away Hollister with nothing else at TE. AB with his head on straight would have made a huge difference. It's going to be tough to win at Baltimore with the current roster.

They wanted Jared Cook but he refused to consider NE as long as Gronk was still a possibility. By the time Gronk retired, there wasn't much left to pick from for TE's. Why they didn't draft a TE is beyond me. As far as Hollister goes, he didn't really show much in NE as he was constantly hurt. He only got a shot in SEA due to multiple injuries to other guys. I still don't think he is much more than a JAG (and has 8 yard ypr). Put another way, Hollister wasn't the answer. I also think NE felt they could coddle Gronk and get him to return, which obviously didn't happen.

In order to win in BAL, the defense will have to carry the weight and play way better. I know this is very unscientific, but the Ravens are due to have a poor outing one of these weeks. They have only turned the ball over 5 times in their past 8 games while creating 15 turnovers. For all the hype that NE got pasted by the Ravens, the net yardage was only +30 yards for BAL. In a rematch, the hurry up offense could easily work again, throw in a couple of gadget plays, and I don't think the game will be a walkover either way. Add in some evil genius defensive schemes and NE would have a chance (although I would pick BAL to win). And as I mentioned earlier today, the playoffs are a whole 'nother animal and for now none of the other AFC playoff contenders have QB's with any playoff success. Not saying those teams can't win, but they haven't so far.

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1 minute ago, Anarchy99 said:

As far as Hollister goes, he didn't really show much in NE as he was constantly hurt. He only got a shot in SEA due to multiple injuries to other guys. I still don't think he is much more than a JAG (and has 8 yard ypr). 

Izzo, Lacosse and Ben Watson ? Hollister showed more talent and upside than any of these guys. He's proving to be a decent option in Seattle, and could have partially filled the huge void at TE. 

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1 minute ago, Casting Couch said:

Izzo, Lacosse and Ben Watson ? Hollister showed more talent and upside than any of these guys. He's proving to be a decent option in Seattle, and could have partially filled the huge void at TE. 

In his time in NE, Hollister didn't show anything more than any of those three guys. Hollister had 8 catches in two years and was usually banged up. They went looking for a TE and thought Gronk could come back. No one knew what would happen AFTER the fact. He's had 2-3 decent games for the Seahawks, and again, what a player does elsewhere is not indicative of how he would have fared in NE. He's averaging 29 yards a game, Would that really have made a huge impact on the NE offense even if that's what he did in NE? There bigger problem is they lost Gronk and Allen, both of whom were very good blockers.

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2 hours ago, Anarchy99 said:

Of their three losses, the most disconcerting was the Texans game. They were never really in that game and some garbage time production made the score look closer than it really was. However, on the flip side, I think the Ravens game was a lot closer than the final score indicated. NE was about to take the lead in the second half when Edelman fumbled and swung the score by 14 points on one play. NE also committed several dumb penalties at the worst times (which they rarely do).

The Ravens were winning 17-0, had outgained the Patriots 206-13 while scoring on their first 3 drives, and were getting the ball back again when they fumbled a punt on their own 20. And then one drive later they fumbled again on their own 15. So while the Edelman play was huge, inopportune turnovers hurt the Ravens at least as much as the Patriots in that game.

There's no doubt the Patriots are a different animal in the playoffs, but the Ravens have always given them all they can handle in the postseason, even when they weren't as good as this year's team. I think the Ravens match up well against them - New England's front 7 is pretty lumbering which helps Lamar get to the edge and helps TEs get open in the passing game. And whereas most offenses are at a huge disadvantage when Gilmore takes away their #1 WR, Baltimore is happy to go whole games not throwing that way, so they can concede that matchup and just play 10-on-10 everywhere else.

Realistically, Wild Card games are probably going to be Pittsburgh at KC and Buffalo at Houston. Of all years, this is a great one to have the #1 seed in the AFC. To me it looks like there are 3 clear top teams in the AFC, so I'd be very happy if the Ravens are set up to await the winner of KC-NE at home. 

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9 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

 There bigger problem is they lost Gronk and Allen, both of whom were very good blockers.

I completely agree with this, although I do think Hollister is a better option than anyone on the current NEP roster.  Very shortsighted of BB not to have a backup plan at TE.

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16 minutes ago, The_Man said:

The Ravens were winning 17-0, had outgained the Patriots 206-13 while scoring on their first 3 drives, and were getting the ball back again when they fumbled a punt on their own 20. And then one drive later they fumbled again on their own 15. So while the Edelman play was huge, inopportune turnovers hurt the Ravens at least as much as the Patriots in that game.

There's no doubt the Patriots are a different animal in the playoffs, but the Ravens have always given them all they can handle in the postseason, even when they weren't as good as this year's team. I think the Ravens match up well against them - New England's front 7 is pretty lumbering which helps Lamar get to the edge and helps TEs get open in the passing game. And whereas most offenses are at a huge disadvantage when Gilmore takes away their #1 WR, Baltimore is happy to go whole games not throwing that way, so they can concede that matchup and just play 10-on-10 everywhere else.

Realistically, Wild Card games are probably going to be Pittsburgh at KC and Buffalo at Houston. Of all years, this is a great one to have the #1 seed in the AFC. To me it looks like there are 3 clear top teams in the AFC, so I'd be very happy if the Ravens are set up to await the winner of KC-NE at home. 

I agree with what you wrote but I also think the teams are constructed differently. NE this year is far more reliant on their defense, forcing turnovers, and giving the offense a short field to work with. They always have been known for being disciplined and not having committing dumb penalties and not turning the ball over. So this year's NE team by the defense forcing turnovers (9 games with 2 or more turnovers). The one game they didn't get a turnover was the Texans game. On the flip side, they have played 11 games this season with 0-1 turnovers.

NE will obviously have to play better than last time, but by the time Edelman fumbled, the momentum had switched, the Ravens defense was getting dog tired from the no huddle, and NE was on the verge of taking the lead. A score of 20-17 of NE with the Ravens on their heels is a lot different than 24-13 BAL and the Ravens getting a huge jump in energy and momentum because of it. Who knows what would have happened had Edelman not fumbled and the Pats went in to score. It could have changed the landscape for the entire AFC this year. Not saying the Patriots would have won . . . but they certainly would have been in a better position to win than after the fumble return for a TD.

Similarly, a lot of people are pointing to the Chiefs win a couple of weeks ago as a clear and decisive win for the Chiefs and conclude that the same outcome would present itself if the two played in NE again. The game was close, the calls didn't go NE's way, and I did not come away from that game thinking the Chiefs were a far superior team. But we are a long way from a NE rematch against anyone other than the Bills.

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On 12/19/2019 at 3:42 PM, The_Man said:

The Ravens were winning 17-0, had outgained the Patriots 206-13 while scoring on their first 3 drives, and were getting the ball back again when they fumbled a punt on their own 20. And then one drive later they fumbled again on their own 15. So while the Edelman play was huge, inopportune turnovers hurt the Ravens at least as much as the Patriots in that game.

There's no doubt the Patriots are a different animal in the playoffs, but the Ravens have always given them all they can handle in the postseason, even when they weren't as good as this year's team. I think the Ravens match up well against them - New England's front 7 is pretty lumbering which helps Lamar get to the edge and helps TEs get open in the passing game. And whereas most offenses are at a huge disadvantage when Gilmore takes away their #1 WR, Baltimore is happy to go whole games not throwing that way, so they can concede that matchup and just play 10-on-10 everywhere else.

Realistically, Wild Card games are probably going to be Pittsburgh at KC and Buffalo at Houston. Of all years, this is a great one to have the #1 seed in the AFC. To me it looks like there are 3 clear top teams in the AFC, so I'd be very happy if the Ravens are set up to await the winner of KC-NE at home. 

So true.

Pats XXL defense struggles mightily with running QB's, fast TE's and pass catching RB's.

Just sooooo slow up front. I think Brady could win a footrace with the Pats LB corps.

Ravens are absolutely the worst matchup for them ... should both team make it to the AFC Champ game.

Best scenario for Pats, obviously, have Bills or Texans take out BAL playoff week 2.

Edited by Bossman

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On 12/23/2019 at 10:02 PM, Bossman said:

Ravens are absolutely the worst matchup for them ... should both team make it to the AFC Champ game.

Best scenario for Pats, obviously, have Bills or Texans take out BAL playoff week 2.

Bossman and I agree.  Surely a sign of the looming apocalypse.

Van Noy and Hightower having to cover TEs and speed backs is the icing on top of the #cantguardLamar cake.

Toss in little doubt that this offense can't possibly score 30 against KC, Baltimore and SanFran or NO and I'm shorting the 7th ring stock.

We need Ingram or Kelce to throw some dirt on NE's grave...

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13 minutes ago, SeniorVBDStudent said:

Bossman and I agree.  Surely a sign of the looming apocalypse.

Van Noy and Hightower having to cover TEs and speed backs is the icing on top of the #cantguardLamar cake.

Toss in little doubt that this offense can't possibly score 30 against KC, Baltimore and SanFran or NO and I'm shorting the 7th ring stock.

We need Ingram or Kelce to throw some dirt on NE's grave...

Every year is different, but I didn't think they stood a chance last year either. I felt both the offense and defense were suspect in 2018 . . . and the defense held the Rams to 3 points. They made a playoff run off of throwing to Edelman and running Michel . . . with Gronk sprinkled in at key moments. Gronk isn't around to bail them out, but the defense should be solid enough that NE won't have to score 30 points to win (at least in theory).

As I mentioned previously, the rest of the AFC quarterbacks have a total of 1 playoff win combined, and I would bet that NE is still plenty good enough to win a home game off of a bye. Their best bet is for someone else to take out the Ravens, which while unlikely is at least a remote possibility.

And for as poorly as NE played in BAL earlier in the season, they were an Edelman fumble away from taking the lead in the second half. That turned out to be a 14 point swing in a game they lost by 17. The Ravens only outgained NE by 30 yards in the game. I wouldn't think NE would win in BAL, but I would not rule it out of the question.

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