Re: Belichick whiffs in the 3rd again...
posted at 8/4/2013 10:49 AM EDT
In response to wozzy's comment:
When they start handing out Super Bowl trophies for third round draft choice proficiency please let me know, in the meantime we're the winningest team over the last decade. We're winning a Super Bowl this year.
Yet another silly homer response to defend the indefensible.
"YEAH...we have the winningest team over the last decade"!!!
Okay...let's expose this "argument" once more. In Tom Brady and BB, the Patriots have the greatest QB of all-time, and the greatest coach of all-time. These guys are so good at what they do that they can, and have, repeatedly, made lemonaide out of lemons. It is their greatness which has served to cover up the horrid drafting errors made by BB, since 2006.
Despite all the regular season success, the Pats have generally failed in the play-offs, and have failed to win another championship. The reason for this has been BB's failure to rebuild his defense, replacing such former stars as Willie McGinest, Richard Seymour, Ty Warren, Ty Law, Tedy Bruschi, Mike Vrabel, Rodney Harrison, and Asante Samuel. This failure stems largely from his poor drafting of defensive players, dating back to the 2006 season. Here's a list of failed defensive players drafted, since 2006:
1.) 2006: BB did not draft a defender until he selected OLB/DE Jeremy Mincey, with the 191st overall pick. Mincey was cut by the Patriots, and then caught on with the woeful Jacksonville Jaguars...where he's enjoyed a modest amount of success as a pass rusher;
2.) 2007: BB selected FS Brandon Meriweather with his 24th overall pick, and DT Kareem Brown with the 127th overall pick. Both of these players from "The U" failed miserably in NE. Though Meriweather made a couple of pro-bowls, he was vastly overrated. BB ended up releasing him because of his lack of disciplined play, and poor pass coverage skills. Meriweather is now out of the league. Brown was awful, and failed to make the team. He too is out of football;
3.) 2008: BB landed a solid LB in Jerod Mayo, with the 10th overall pick that year. Mayo has been a tackling machine with the team ever since...and is a very good ILB. But, the selections of CB Terrence Wheatley (62nd overall), DE/OLB Shawn "Betty Grable" Crable (78th overall), and CB Jonathan Wilhite (129th overall), were awful selections, who contributed next to nothing to the team. All are out of football.
4.) 2009: BB chose SS Patrick Chung with the 34th overall pick. When healthy, which was a rare occurrence indeed, Chung was effective on special teams, and in run support. But, the guy couldn't cover from day one. He left this year as an UFA...and has since signed on with the Philadelphia Eagles. Pick numbers 40 and 41 overall, DT Ron Brace and CB Darius Butler, were awful. Both have been released. ILB Tyrone McKenzie, taken 97th overall, hurt his knee as a rookie in training camp, and never amounted to anything as a football player thereafter.
5.) 2010: CB Devin McCourty horribly regressed after an outstanding rookie season...to the point where he has been switched from CB to FS. Fortunately, he's found some success in his new position. OLB Jermaine Cunningham, taken 53rd overall, has been a major disappointment. He's in danger of being cut this season. ILB Brandon Spikes has the proverbial "body by Fischer, brains by Mattel" problem. Though he's a solid run-stuffer, he has serious issues in pass coverage. An UFA next season, this season likely will be his last as a Patriot.
6.) 2011: CB Ras-I Dowling, taken 33rd overall, was an injury prone college player. Not surprisingly, nothing has changed in the pros...as Ras-I seemingly tweaks his hamstring every time he climbs out of bed.
7.) 2012: The jury is still out on #1 draft choices, DE Chandler Jones, and LB Dont'a Hightower. That said, Jones looks like the real deal as a pass-rushing DE. Hightower showed signs of being a solid player. But, he doesn't appear to be cut out to play as an attacking OLB. He seems to be better suited at ILB. FS Tavon Wilson, taken at #48 overall, was vastly overdrafted. He appears to be an adequate reserve, at best. DE Jake Bequette, selected 90th overall, did nothing in his rookie season. There's a good chance that he'll be cut this season.
8.) 2013: Jaime Collins was selected with pick #52 to possibly replace DE/OLB Rob Ninkovich next year...when the then 30 year old Nink becomes an UFA. Yet, thus far in training camp, BB has yet to find the right position for him. Not good...as Collins may be more of an athlete than a football player. Early reviews out of training camp also haven't been good on Rutgers' DBs, Ryan Logan (83rd overall) and the vastly overdrafted Duron Harmon (91st overall).
So, as objective eyes can see, there's been little help to the defense through the draft, from 2006-present. Only Jerod Mayo, McCourty, Spikes, and perhaps newcomers Jones and Hightower have been contributors. Doesn't this serve as an explanation for why the Pats' "D" has repeatedly failed the team in the play-offs?