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He's Back! Welcome home Deion Branch

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    Re: He's Back! Welcome home Deion Branch

    In response to PatsEng's comment:

    In response to TFB12's comment:

    In response to ipotnyc's comment:

    Going back about 8 seasons, this team won 3 SBs without an "A-list" deep threat. 

    Last year they put up an insane amount of yards/points without a deep threat AND less of a running game.

    I think they'll be fine with Branch on short routes and slants.  Maybe they'll design a play for Slater if they need to go for it, same as they did with Stallworth.

    I disagree with comments of not having deep threat.  SB last season was lost without a deep threat.  Football is a lot different then 8 seasons and 3 SB's ago. Playoffs in 2010 was lost due to not having a deep threat.  The threat of a deep threat spreads the defense out which opens up the short/mid game and the run game.  With no deep threat the defense plays a short to mid field and covers everything.  Jets playoff game in 2010 proved this.

    I'm going to have to disagree. It was lost because we had no running game and the Giants flooded the center of the field. Having a deep threat didn't help in 07' and the 07' and 11' SB's were eriely similar don't you agree?

    Agree with Eng about why we lost, and I think Branch will take over some of Lloyds "possession" 10 yard routes, and we will send Lloyd on some other crossing patterns and perhaps a few jump balls as he is an amazing athlete. We have kept the wraps on Lloyd and with our return to play action Lloyd is a great option to have for a few bigger plays.

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    Re: He's Back! Welcome home Deion Branch

    I like Brach, but he lost step or two. Its high time we should develop a young receiver and give them enough chances to see if they can delvelop. 

    We could have kept any one of these guys. I belive none of them got enough chances to develop. 

    Greg Salas

    Tiquan Underwood

    Brandon Tate

    They will also help return games. 

    Can we pluck Greg Salas out of Eagles practice Squad and sign to active roster!

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    Re: He's Back! Welcome home Deion Branch

    In response to PatsEng's comment:

    I'm going to have to disagree. It was lost because we had no running game and the Giants flooded the center of the field. Having a deep threat didn't help in 07' and the 07' and 11' SB's were eriely similar don't you agree?

    What the heck are you talking about? The 07 SB and 11 SB were not that similar.  In 2007 our offensive line got bent over the entire game (they still played poorly in 2011, but not nearly as badly as in 07).  The Giants didn't flood the middle of the field.  Welker tore them up for 11 catches and 103 yards.  The passing offense we run now was basically the only thing that worked in that SB.

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    Re: He's Back! Welcome home Deion Branch

    In response to Quagmire3's comment:

    Hey I love Dieone Branch! He is a class act and always in the right place at the right time! He might not have the wheels he used to have, but I firmly believe he will help us going forward.

    Rick Reilly's column in SI after the Pats 3rd Super Bowl. I remember reading this at the time, and just recently found this issue at home...

    In the final hours before the Super Bowl, NFL players have been known to go and get, say, a $40 (hooker). Or go to Tijuana and get muy smashed. Or try to set the coke-snorting world record.
    But before this Super Bowl, wide receiver Deion Branch of the Patriots did something even stranger.
    He picked up his cellphone and called every coach in his life who meant something to him. He called Pee Wee coaches. He called his high school receivers coach. He called his junior college offensive coordinator. He called his college head coach. He called 13 coaches in all.
    And do you know what he told them? Thank you.
    Thank you for caring about me when I could've gone south. Thank you for making me run stairs. Thank you for believing I could do this.
    He thanked his coach at Louisville for not giving up on him when his grades were lousy. He thanked his high school coach for believing he wasn't too puny. He thanked one coach for being there for him when his infant son was near death.
    He got so emotional while thanking them that "I was crying half the time," says Branch, 25. "It's hard, but I don't want them to think I've left them behind. I want them to know I'm thinking about them all the time."
    And when he was done calling--about two hours later--he got on the team bus, put on his number 83 and made the Patriots thank God they had drafted him.
    Branch caught 11 passes--tying the Super Bowl record co-owned by his hero, Jerry Rice--for 133 yards. He was named the MVP of New England's 24-21 win over the Eagles.
    If you're counting, that's two Super Bowls, 21 catches, 276 yards, one MVP, two rings and maybe the one example of a pro who understands that being a great athlete is the work of dozens of people, not one.
    "He called this afternoon [Super Bowl Sunday] about three and said, 'Coach, I'm calling to say thank you for the many ways you helped me,'" says Vernorris Bradley, who was Branch's receivers coach at Monroe High in Albany, Ga. "He said, 'Thanks for all the ways you influenced me. I just want you to know how much I appreciate all you did.'"
    Usually, the response to these calls is something like, "Am I being Punk'd?"
    "I mean, I was just floored," says Bradley, who retired after the 2003 season. "A guy that famous and successful can think about a guy who coached him so long ago? On the day of the Super Bowl? Man, that's somebody who hasn't forgotten where he came from."
    Branch even called the coach who cut him from the middle school team. "He kicked me off the bus," remembers Branch, who at 5'9" is hardly bigger than the MVP trophy he was lugging around Jacksonville late Sunday night. "He said I was too small and I'd get hurt. I was so mad."
    Of course, Branch has heard that Short People song his whole life. "The 49ers said that, too. [Before the draft] they said I was a good player but too small for this league."
    Wonder if they still think that after watching Branch tear through the Eagles' secondary--the one with (cough, cough) three Pro Bowl players--like a minibike through a herd of drugged elephants. It was as if they didn't even see him. And he broke them for good in the fourth quarter when he just flat picked the pocket of cornerback Sheldon Brown, turning a sure interception into a 19-yard gain that set up the field goal that gave the Pats a 10-point lead.
    Oh, and don't forget, it was Branch who double-handedly killed the Steelers in the AFC Championship Game. I mean, Tom Brady is good, but he isn't throwing them to himself.
    Of course, after Branch won the MVP, he thanked God, his blockers, his coaches--everyone but his dental hygienist and his own marvelous Velcro hands.
    O.K., so Branch is a gratitude freak. So sue. Four years ago he nearly lost one of his newborn twin sons, Deiondre, to spinal meningitis. The baby was in a hospital being kept alive by machines. "I think [Deion] was having to decide whether it was time to unplug," says Bradley, when a "miracle" occurred. The infant suddenly responded to treatment.
    On Sunday, Deiondre was chasing his brother, Deiontey, around a Super Bowl field of confetti. Now his father holds on tightly to anything that comes his way--spirals and sons.
    After the game some corporate suit told Branch that as the MVP he could pick any Cadillac he wanted, not just the red coupe that had been rolled to the 50-yard line after the game to show it off.
    "Well," Branch grinned, "that little one on the field looked pretty sweet."
    He sure did.

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    Re: He's Back! Welcome home Deion Branch

    This is not good. The Edelman injury looms large. I would have much rather seen Stallworth in there and it is very unfortunate he was immediately hurt. You coiuld easily see the speed was still there and a much greater deep threat than Branch who has been declining badly and not producing. We don't need another possession type receiver for short passes what we need is to stretch the field and make the D pay attention to the deep end. Hopefully Gronk comes back FULL FORCE as I think he will. There's nobody else out there with some speed who can catch?!

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    Re: He's Back! Welcome home Deion Branch

    There were 2 open roster spots and 1 PS opening. Branch took one roster spot and Taylor Logan was signed to PS. Today is Thursday, doubt if the Pats will bring in another significant signing off the street who is not familiar with the play books to have any impact on Sunday's game. So unless it is Gaffney (a player cut by the Dolphins after 6 weeks when they have enough need in WR to put in a claim for Binns. That tell you something how much Gaffney has left in his games), the roster spot is likley a promotion from the PS.

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    Re: He's Back! Welcome home Deion Branch

    I am curious as to who gets more snaps in the 3WR set, Branch or Slater?

    There is no question in my mind if Gronk, Hernandez, Wes and Lloyd are on the field, the 3 WR I want is someone who can take a S out of the middle of the field. I dont think Branch or Lloyd can do that. We always see a CB on the routes 99% of the time with out S help.