Are the 2010 Pats Better Than the 2009 Squad?

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    Re: Are the 2010 Pats Better Than the 2009 Squad?

    Easily... now duid other teams get better... Yes... So that doesn't necessarily mean we'll compile a better record than 09', but this team has more unity, fire, talent, and one year more under our players belts on the young defense.  Our OC also now has a better feel for calling plays, so I'd definietly say we are better.
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    Re: Are the 2010 Pats Better Than the 2009 Squad?

    It seems you are really asking the people here for their predictions. Chung, Darius Butler, Terrence Wheatley, Ron Brace, McKenzie, Tate, McCourty, Spikes, Cunningham, Hernandez, and Gronkowski, don't all need to step up. If they all play great, then this team will be the best pats team ever, lol. 

    I expect something realistic, that the majority to all of them will contribute. A couple will be very good to star quality.

    I think the good feeling is coming from the fact that many of these players have roster spots that have been so weak the last few seasons. 

    Gronk, Crump and Hernandez will be automatically superior to anything NE has fielded since Ben Coates left, although Graham was a good TE too. Spikes is the first real run stopper NE has had in a while, although he is likely going to fill in like a Seau with fresher legs at first, those fresh legs will mean a lot more as he gets the knack.

    Tate only needs to be good to adequate, and this whole offense improves, based on the terrible support out of the third WR position. I also wouldn't underestimate the reps that have gone to Edelman at split end. If they could train him as an exterior threat, they would be styling. 

    The guys that can be real difference makers are McCourty, Butler, Cunningham and  Chung. If Cunnningham can do/be something special his first season it will be a miracle -- the mere fact that he starts over Burgess though could just mean he's the best of a bad bunch. 

    McCourty beating Butler out is something I hope for, because that would take last year's second best corner and force him inside. I have a lot of respect for Bodden's game, and Butler was coming along nicely at a spot (and on a defense) that has a steep curve. This would give NE a very good CB unit, at least as good as the Hobbs/Samuels team, and likely better.

    And if Chung wins a spot from the get go, it would have been very fast indeed, at least for BB's defense. But the thing that would be impressive is the fact that he beat a player that is solid in James Sanders. That would mean something to opposing defenses. 

    I think with Wheatley and Brace whatever you get is a plus at this point. Wheatley's injury had me concerned dearly when they selected him, and even though he looks like he is progressing, I can't help but feel like it will be a problem we hear about again. And although I loved the work Brace put in at BC, and seemed to have a normal development season last year, coming in and failing the conditioning test (in his sophomore season no less) make me question his desire to be a good NFL player. Maybe he cashed that first $500,000 paycheck and decided to have a love affair with cheeseburgers and milkshakes?!?!

    What do I expect? Big years from Tate and the TE's -- especially Tate. And very good seasons from Chung and Spikes. I suspect there will be a learning curve at CB coz as of right now no one has really impressed the way that Spikes and Chung have so far -- so look for some good coverage and some athletic plays, a few youthful errors and a battle alongside Bodden for the next spot. I expect Cunningham to get reps in the mix with Burgess et al in a rotation as takes on a hard transition. I think that is "enough" to constitute improved as a ball club -- areas have improved (TE, CB, S, ILB), none have significantly degraded. Improved enough, who is to say but the competition?
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    Re: Are the 2010 Pats Better Than the 2009 Squad?

    1) I very strongly believe we will be better on special teams: it looks like we have a legit return man on kickoffs and a better punter.  Field position wins games in a way I think is second only to turnovers.  And we have one of the best kickers in football.  Moves from a B- to a B+

    2) Defense will be better for sure.  People like Chung, Butler, Merriweather, Mayo will all be better than they were last year--more able to use their athletic ability fluidly within our system.  Yea, losing Ty Warren is bad, but getting G. Warren helps, Pryor being better and older helps, and my gut tells me Spikes will be good for a couple third down stops each game.  Moves from a B to a B+/A-

    3) Offense I think will be better. I'm genuinely concerned about the O Line, and until I see Welker cutting and losing people, I'm worried.  That being said, I'm a true believer in Hernandez, I have a full-on man crush for Edelman, and it looks like Moss is in great shape.  Moves from a B+ in 2009 to an A- in 2010.

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    Re: Are the 2010 Pats Better Than the 2009 Squad?

    O better: Brady, Welker, Edelman, Tate, Moss, TE trio and a little more production from the run game all there. We will score more points. Red Zone improvements.

    D Better: Line worry with Brace for Warren, but we will make this work. Secondary, we have choices this year in all positions with great adds like Spikes, Courtney.. We will stop the opposing offense, no more late game let downs. 

    Attitude Better: beating down from Ravens set the attitude for this year, something to prove.
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    Re: Are the 2010 Pats Better Than the 2009 Squad?

    On Paper - Yes
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    Re: Are the 2010 Pats Better Than the 2009 Squad?

    The Patriots' first team hung ten points on the first team of the NFL Champion Saints, (and I don't care what the undrafted free agents did to each other).  That's a very good sign.
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    cynical view....

    just to stir the pot...

    We've lost both our starting defensive ends
    We've lost two starting offensive linemen, one a pro bowler. 
    Unknown whether Wes will have lost any quickness.

    No improvement made with lame Offensive Coordinator.  Oh yeah, O'Brien is really a brilliant OC, he just chose to not exhibit it last year. This year will be different, somehow. Good that Pees is gone, though.  

    Our competition in conference has improved. 
    Our schedule is tougher.

    Special teams looks better.

    WR - will Tate be significantly better than Aiken?  Maybe. I hope so.

    TE - will 2 rookies be significantly better than Watson? Crumpler vs Baker = wash.  

    RB - sos. Two TE blocking schemes might help, but again, we're down two starting OL.   Hate that we tip-off our play call with the RB we bring-in. 

    LB -  Brandon Spikes and Cunningham over Adalius Thomas and Jr. Seau? Probably yes.  Esp given Thomas issues. New guys might make more mistakes, but will make more plays. 

    DB - Wash. If McCourtney gets on the field in the 2nd half of season, his talents will be offset with his inexperience.

    Are the rookies significantly better than the men they'll replace to off-set the know producers we've lost, and the tougher schedule and tougher conference ?

    We shall see.

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    Re: Are the 2010 Pats Better Than the 2009 Squad?

    should be but too early to tell... I will say that the team could be better and still have a worse record.