Patriots Offseason Review

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    Patriots Offseason Review

         With the passing of the 2014 NFL draft, Here's my early take on the 2014 New England Patriots:


    I. Free Agency:


    1.) The Good: Though the Pats lost star CB Aqib Talib, they at the very least adequately replaced him with Derrelle Revis. Resigning Julian Edelman returns Tom Brady's favorite receiver to him. Notwithstanding the fact that he's under suspension for the first four games, adding a tall, press cover CB like Brandon Browner should help. Though annexing a tall, physical WR in Brandon LaFell shouldn't hurt, he appears to be nothing more than insurance in the event that Aaron Dobson's foot injury remains an issue. Veteran DE Will Smith might be of some use if healthy. But, word is that he's still rehabbing his injured knee;


    2.) The Bad: Allowing RB LeGarrette Blount to walk merely because the Pats didn't want to give him a two year deal seems foolish. Blount reminded us of the Corey Dillon days, as he gave the Patriots their first true weapon at RB in years. Because the Pats lost Blount, they likely felt compelled to use the 130th overall pick on Wisconsin RB James White...who appears to be another role player. Releasing the ineffective Steve Gregory and replacing him with the previously ineffective Patrick Chung still leaves the Pats with a gaping hole at SS. The loss of free spirited ILB Brandon Spikes and solid reserve ILB Brandon Fletcher leaves the Pats thin at that position;


    3.) The Ugly: For the second straight season, Patriot fans had to cringe as they watched one of their favorite players leave to join the chief competition, the hated Denver Horse-faces. No doubt that adding Talib will make Denver tougher to beat. But, if the Broncos hadn't signed him, they likely would have signed Revis; 


     


    II. Draft: Though the Pats had strengthened themselves through free agency at CB and somewhat at WR, they failed to adequately address their multiple needs, at LB, SS, and on both the DL (specially for a pass-rusher) and OL, heading into the 2014 draft. Did the Pats draft fill any or all of those needs?:


    1.) Dominique Easley, Florida (29th overall): Picking at #29, and apparently failing to find an adequate trade-down, BB reached for a guy who, "if healthy", could provide the team with someone who could serve as an interior pass-rusher on the DL. But, Easley tore up his left knee in 2011, and his right knee last season (ACL/MCL). For this reason, he dropped on most boards, from a top 20 pick, to a late second to mid-third rounder. As we speak, he is still rehabbing his right knee, and likely will miss at least the complete preseason. As a means of defending this pick, it was  rumored that Seattle wanted him at #32. Even if true, the champion Seahawks already have a great defense, and could afford to redshirt a talent like Easley. But, the Patriots do not have a great defense, and needed immediate help. One wonders whether BB learned anything from the Ras-I Dowling experience?;


    2.) Jimmy Garoppolo, Eastern Illinois (62nd overall): Could be that, despite his gaudy college stats (53 TDs and just 9 picks last season) and lightning quick release, Garoppolo was undervalued due to the quality of competition he played against. Though not quite as tall as one would like (6'2"), and with smaller hands than preferred (which could lead to fumbles and turnovers, especially in inclement weather), this guy appears to have the leadership qualities and work ethic necessary to develop into a starting NFL QB. Folks, whether we like it or not, Tom Brady is 37 years old...and his skills may be starting to erode. A replacement must be found. If Garoppolo shows progress and promise, 2014 may be the final year of the Brady era in New England;


    3.) OC Brian Stork, Florida State (105th overall): After a good 2012 season as a starting center, Ryan Wendell was terrible last year. His poor play was highlighted in the AFC title game, when he was dominated by DT Terrence Knighton. Though Wendell was by no means singularly responsible, poor OL play resulted in the Patriots being unable to run the ball in that game, leading to a crushing defeat. Perhaps Stork, the recipient of the Remington Trophy as the best center in college football, can be an upgrade?;


    4.) RB James White, Wisconsin (#130th overall): A pick that was seemingly necessitated to replace the departed LeGarrette Blount. Could serve as a Kevin Faulk type...as he has good hands, and is an effective part-time runner. But, the wiser course appears to have been to give Blount his modest two year deal, rather than have to spend a late 4th round pick on an unproven commodity;


    5.) OT Cameron Fleming, Stanford (#140 overall): Not a bad spot to add depth on the OL, or even a potential starter at RT. With Sebastien Vollmer's chronic back problems, and the ineffectiveness of RG Dan Connelly, this addition may allow BB to move RT Marcus Cannon inside to replace Connelly, while Fleming holds the fort at RT; 


    6.) OG Jon Halapio, Florida (179th overall): Could also be the answer as an upgrade at RG over Connelly...or...practice squad material;


    7.) DE Zach Moore, Concordia (198th overall): Pass rushing project who could oust the disappointing Jake Bequette, or fellow project Michael Buchanan. Moore has the prototype size and speed on a 4-3 NFL DE. Had 33 sacks in three years for his Division II school. A good gamble at this point in the draft;


    8.) DB Jemea Thomas, Georgia Tech (206th overall): An undersized (5'9") safety/CB, who notched 88 tackles last season for the Yellow-jackets. Could be the addition that signals the end for the disappointing Tavon Wilson in New England;


    9.) WR Jeremy Gallon, Michigan (244th overall): Isn't this the typical guy that the Pats seemingly grab every year, either late in the draft (Jeremy Ebert), or as an undrafted free agent (T.J. Moe)? Kudos to BB for not making nice with the media or Roger Goodell, by drafting Michael Sam. Let the Rams deal with that major league distraction.   


     


    SUMMARY: How Easley and Garoppolo fare will determine the success or failure of this draft. If they both pan out, this will be an "A+" draft, no matter how the other picks fare. If just one of the two pan out, it will be a "B" draft...increasing to a "B+", or even an "A-", if Garoppolo turns out to be a quality NFL QB. But, it appears that these selections, aside from the OL selections, will strengthen the team in 2014. The reason why the Pats went in this direction goes back to a statement that Robert Kraft made after he hired BB. It went something like, "The mission statement of this team is to be like the old Tom Landry Dallas Cowboys of the 70s and 80s...to compete every year for a championship". In other words, the Pats aren't going to go "all in" on any one season, regardless of how many years that Tom Brady has left. Credit BB for making efforts to try to overtake the Broncos, by strengthening the OL, and rolling dice on Easley, who could be that pass-rusher that we all have craved to see in a Patriots' uniform. But, Easley's injury history makes him a huge gamble. Garoppolo provides QB insurance, and has the tools to become a good starting NFL QB. 


         If not for the Blount move, I would have really liked what the Pats did in the offseason. I also question why the Pats spent so much money on WR LaFell. It makes me think that BB has doubts about the health of Aaron Dobson. As for the draft, time will tell whether BB the GM hit a homerun, or took the Golden Sombrero. Holes seemingly remain at SS, at DL depth, and at LB depth. Look for major changes in 2015, if the Pats fail to make it to the SB in 2014.          


     


     


     


     


     


       

     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from prolate0spheroid. Show prolate0spheroid's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

     

    Replacing Blount with White is, in my opinion, a good move, so if that's what's worrying you about he offseason, I think you can go ahead and stop worrying . . . 

     

     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from TexasPat. Show TexasPat's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to prolate0spheroid's comment:

    Replacing Blount with White is, in my opinion, a good move, so if that's what's worrying you about he offseason, I think you can go ahead and stop worrying . . .  



         I think you are vastly underrating the talents of Blount, and the contributions he made to the team last season. The Pats were floundering when they went into Baltimore late last season. They turned things around there, and routed the Ravens. Blount played a huge part in their turnaround. With him gone, now the Pats are back to Stevan 'butter fingers" Ridley as their lead RB.

         The other thing about their offseason is that the Broncos seemingly improved themselves more than the Pats did. But...time will tell. 

     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from prolate0spheroid. Show prolate0spheroid's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

     


     Tex, I'll get jumped on by all the run-first guys on this board, but i watched that Ravens game on the coaches tape and think a lot of Blounts' success had to do with the Ravens' defensive schemes (LBs dropping), plus some good blocking especially by Mankins.  


    The other end of season games where Blount looked good had similar circumstances.  When the Broncos played run first, Blount was horribly ineffective . . . which is a big reason I think BB wasn't keen to re-sign him. 


     

     
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  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from mthurl. Show mthurl's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to TexasPat's comment:



     




    In response to prolate0spheroid's comment:




    Replacing Blount with White is, in my opinion, a good move, so if that's what's worrying you about he offseason, I think you can go ahead and stop worrying . . .  




     





         I think you are vastly underrating the talents of Blount, and the contributions he made to the team last season. The Pats were floundering when they went into Baltimore late last season. They turned things around there, and routed the Ravens. Blount played a huge part in their turnaround. With him gone, now the Pats are back to Stevan 'butter fingers" Ridley as their lead RB.


     


     


         The other thing about their offseason is that the Broncos seemingly improved themselves more than the Pats did. But...time will tell. 


     




    I think you are overrating Blount, I'll give him credit that he ran hard towards the end of the season and gave us everything he had, but I think we are talking about a limited runner here. Blount takes time to get up to speed, for a big back he doesn't have that short area power and I think people are forgetting that this guy has been far from a boy scout throughout his career. I think Blount was smart enough to realize he needed to be a good boy for a season - which he was - but now that he got his money there's a rather large chance we could see the old Blount again...the one who gains weight, likes to punch teammates in the face and doesn't always run physical. I think what you saw from Blount was as good as it gets with him, I doubt we'll see much more of that.


     


     I think people are going to be surprised with James White a little bit. I think he can be a little more than just a backup to Vareen as a third down back - runners from Wisconsin are usually pretty strong - they run the football up there...that's what White did. Ran. And ran a lot.


     


     

     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from prolate0spheroid. Show prolate0spheroid's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to DougIrwin's comment:

    In response to prolate0spheroid's comment:

     

     

     Tex, I'll get jumped on by all the run-first guys on this board, but i watched that Ravens game on the coaches tape and think a lot of Blounts' success had to do with the Ravens' defensive schemes (LBs dropping), plus some good blocking especially by Mankins.  

     

    The other end of season games where Blount looked good had similar circumstances.  When the Broncos played run first, Blount was horribly ineffective . . . which is a big reason I think BB wasn't keen to re-sign him. 

     

     



    I love how you always praise Mankins just because the media has been programmed to do so.  It's literally impossible for you to acknowledge or compliment the real winners on this team, isn't it?

    Mankins is a loser. I don't think I've seen a more over-hyped Pats player in my life.   When the time comes to perform, he folds.  He's dominated every postseason.

     




    You forget, Alex Smith doesn't play for the Pats. 

     
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  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from TexasPat. Show TexasPat's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to prolate0spheroid's comment:

     Tex, I'll get jumped on by all the run-first guys on this board, but i watched that Ravens game on the coaches tape and think a lot of Blounts' success had to do with the Ravens' defensive schemes (LBs dropping), plus some good blocking especially by Mankins.  

    The other end of season games where Blount looked good had similar circumstances.  When the Broncos played run first, Blount was horribly ineffective . . . which is a big reason I think BB wasn't keen to re-sign him.  



         Could be some truth to what you are saying. But I thought that the Patriots' OL got manhandled against the Broncos...and in particular by Terrence Knighton...and that is why the Pats couldn't run the ball. No RB is effective when he's constantly being hit behind the line, and has no running lanes.

     
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  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from joepatsfan111111. Show joepatsfan111111's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    one thing taken from this whole thread,....

    Blount is way overrated.

    If he had his two huge games in week 1 and 2 then did what he did all season you would most likely have a different feel about him.

    He was no better than Ridley besides holding onto the ball.

     

    I know I'm beating a dead horse when I say it, but Ridley can overcome fumbling. players have done it before. Ridley also ran for 1200 yards in 2012. he will easily break 1,000 again this year and maybe even 1,200 too..

    Stop underrating him. stop overrating blount. he was replaced by doug martin in tampa and will dissolve behind LeVeon Bell in Pitt.

     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from MattC05. Show MattC05's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to joepatsfan111111's comment:

    He was no better than Ridley besides holding onto the ball.

     



    He wasn't even better than Ridley in that: Blount fumbled 3 times in 157 touches, and 12 in 602 for his career.  Ridley fumbled 4 in 188 touches, and 9 in 574 for his career.  They're pretty much identical in terms of ball security.

     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from ATJ. Show ATJ's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    TP, I think you are overvaluing Blount by quite a bit.  I also am of the opinion that Talib was excellent to outstanding when on the field.  Problem is he was all too often not there particularly at critical times.  Your assertion that Easley was a 'reach' (lovely word that) is not supported by the facts.  It's been documented by multiple sources that Seattle (you know the team that this board was screaming for NE to pattern it's personnel management after) was about to pick Easley with pick 32.  Apart from Easley, I don't really really disagree with much else in your draft evaluation.

     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from prolate0spheroid. Show prolate0spheroid's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to TexasPat's comment:


    In response to prolate0spheroid's comment:


     Tex, I'll get jumped on by all the run-first guys on this board, but i watched that Ravens game on the coaches tape and think a lot of Blounts' success had to do with the Ravens' defensive schemes (LBs dropping), plus some good blocking especially by Mankins.  


    The other end of season games where Blount looked good had similar circumstances.  When the Broncos played run first, Blount was horribly ineffective . . . which is a big reason I think BB wasn't keen to re-sign him.  




         Could be some truth to what you are saying. But I thought that the Patriots' OL got manhandled against the Broncos...and in particular by Terrence Knighton...and that is why the Pats couldn't run the ball. No RB is effective when he's constantly being hit behind the line, and has no running lanes.





    The line did struggle, but it was also a scheme thing.  All year, it struck me that teams that used their LBs more aggressively had good success against the Pats (both in run defense and pass rush).  Teams that played more conservatively, dropping their LBs to defend the short pass were vulnerable to the run.  The Broncos really showed no respect at all for our receivers.  Much of the first half if I remember right, they kept just one safety back and kept most of their LBs and DBs near the LOS.  


    I believe Baltimore's defensive coordinator later said he made a mistake worrying too much about pass coverage in that game and not playing the Pats aggressively enough at the LOS.  


    Cincinnati, by the way, was the team that first used this aggressive style with great effect.  They sacked Brady three times on play action passes by just being aggressive with their DLs and LBs and not worrying about the pass. 

     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from TexasPat. Show TexasPat's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to ATJ's comment:

    TP, I think you are overvaluing Blount by quite a bit.  I also am of the opinion that Talib was excellent to outstanding when on the field.  Problem is he was all too often not there particularly at critical times.  Your assertion that Easley was a 'reach' (lovely word that) is not supported by the facts.  It's been documented by multiple sources that Seattle (you know the team that this board was screaming for NE to pattern it's personnel management after) was about to pick Easley with pick 32.  Apart from Easley, I don't really really disagree with much else in your draft evaluation.



         Easley was, and is, a reach...considering that most had him tabbed as a late second to early third rounder, and because of his awful injury history. But, just because he's a "reach", doesn't mean that he won't pan out. It's just a huge risk to take with a first round pick, by a team that needs immediate help. As I stated previously, Seattle already has a great defense, and could afford rolling dice on a player, who may not pay any immediate dividends. That is not the case with the Patriots. Hopefully, Easley's knees won't be an issue, and he'll develop into a very good player.

     

     
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    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to joepatsfan111111's comment:

    one thing taken from this whole thread,....

    Blount is way overrated.

    If he had his two huge games in week 1 and 2 then did what he did all season you would most likely have a different feel about him.

    He was no better than Ridley besides holding onto the ball.

     

    I know I'm beating a dead horse when I say it, but Ridley can overcome fumbling. players have done it before. Ridley also ran for 1200 yards in 2012. he will easily break 1,000 again this year and maybe even 1,200 too..

    Stop underrating him. stop overrating blount. he was replaced by doug martin in tampa and will dissolve behind LeVeon Bell in Pitt.

    RESPONSE: Sorry...but I don't think I'm overrating Blount. He ran like Corey Dillon last year...and to let him go sign elsewhere for a relatively small amount seems to me to be a mistake. BB erred in the same fashion on Danny Woodhead last year. Also, I'm not saying that Jams White is a bad player. On the contrary, he seems to fit what the Pats do on offense very well. I just wish that BB had kept Blount, too.        




     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from rkarp. Show rkarp's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to TexasPat's comment:

    In response to ATJ's comment:

    TP, I think you are overvaluing Blount by quite a bit.  I also am of the opinion that Talib was excellent to outstanding when on the field.  Problem is he was all too often not there particularly at critical times.  Your assertion that Easley was a 'reach' (lovely word that) is not supported by the facts.  It's been documented by multiple sources that Seattle (you know the team that this board was screaming for NE to pattern it's personnel management after) was about to pick Easley with pick 32.  Apart from Easley, I don't really really disagree with much else in your draft evaluation.



         Easley was, and is, a reach...considering that most had him tabbed as a late second to early third rounder, and because of his awful injury history. But, just because he's a "reach", doesn't mean that he won't pan out. It's just a huge risk to take with a first round pick, by a team that needs immediate help. As I stated previously, Seattle already has a great defense, and could afford rolling dice on a player, who may not pay any immediate dividends. That is not the case with the Patriots. Hopefully, Easley's knees won't be an issue, and he'll develop into a very good player.

     



    I dont see any urgency with Easley. The team has invested in Vince, Kelly and Armstead, and also has Siligia and Jones if need be. I anticipate Easley having a rookie season much like Collins did last year

     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from rkarp. Show rkarp's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to TexasPat's comment:

    In response to joepatsfan111111's comment:

    one thing taken from this whole thread,....

    Blount is way overrated.

    If he had his two huge games in week 1 and 2 then did what he did all season you would most likely have a different feel about him.

    He was no better than Ridley besides holding onto the ball.

     

    I know I'm beating a dead horse when I say it, but Ridley can overcome fumbling. players have done it before. Ridley also ran for 1200 yards in 2012. he will easily break 1,000 again this year and maybe even 1,200 too..

    Stop underrating him. stop overrating blount. he was replaced by doug martin in tampa and will dissolve behind LeVeon Bell in Pitt.

    RESPONSE: Sorry...but I don't think I'm overrating Blount. He ran like Corey Dillon last year...and to let him go sign elsewhere for a relatively small amount seems to me to be a mistake. BB erred in the same fashion on Danny Woodhead last year. Also, I'm not saying that Jams White is a bad player. On the contrary, he seems to fit what the Pats do on offense very well. I just wish that BB had kept Blount, too.        






    I thought Blount ran thru big holes, wilted in the clutch and still is a concern to show disinterest if paid. 

    No where close to how Dillon ran. 

     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from portfolio1. Show portfolio1's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    With the passing of the 2014 NFL draft, Here's my early take on the 2014 New England Patriots:

    I. Free Agency:

    1.) The Good: Though the Pats lost star CB Aqib Talib, they at the very least adequately replaced him with Derrelle Revis. Resigning Julian Edelman returns Tom Brady's favorite receiver to him. Notwithstanding the fact that he's under suspension for the first four games, adding a tall, press cover CB like Brandon Browner should help. Though annexing a tall, physical WR in Brandon LaFell shouldn't hurt, he appears to be nothing more than insurance in the event that Aaron Dobson's foot injury remains an issue. Veteran DE Will Smith might be of some use if healthy. But, word is that he's still rehabbing his injured knee. Signing back Patrick Chung and releasing started Steve Gregory; I expect LaFell is hoped to be a regular though not central contributor. He is little like Dobson except that he is not short. He should be more like a Givens type receiver and Dobson more a guy to help stretch the field a little.

    2.) The Bad: Allowing RB LeGarrette Blount to walk merely because the Pats didn't want to give him a two year deal, seems foolish. Blount reminded us of the Corey Dillon days, as he gave the Patriots their first true weapon at RB in years. Because the Pats lost Blount, they likely felt compelled to use the 130th overall pick on Wisconsin RB James White...who appears to be nothing more than a role player. Releasing the ineffective Steve Gregory and replacing him with the previously ineffective Patrick Chung still leaves the Pats with a gaping hole at SS. The loss of free spirited ILB Brandon Spikes and solid reserve ILB Brandon Fletcher leaves the Pats thin at that position; I also wanted them to resign Blount but you say a couple of things here which are ... let's called them ill advised: (1) Blount is not the first ture wea[on at RB in years. As the primary RB in a running game shared by multiple RBs Ridley ran for 1200. That is even more impressive because BB wanted and used multiple backs. Your remark is ill advised. (2) Bolden was little like Corey though Corey's name came up. He showed more power than in the past but nothing like Corey power. What he showed was enough of a burst to break longer runs and that little extra power to break open when he was arm tackled or to get an extra yard when hit directly. (3) As regards White - we dont know what we have yet but consider his qualities and skills. I agree we expect he will be a role player. BUt role players are not created equal. You are dismissive. I can think of a number of role players in the history of the league (especially as the league became more intent on using more than throwing your starting 22 at my starting 22). In this case I see many similarities with Kevin Faulk. Now I admit, agree I don't even know if White makes the team. But if he is a Faulk-like player his role playing will be an important facet of the offense.

    3.) The Ugly: For the second straight season, Patriot fans had to cringe as they watched one of their favorite players leave to join the chief competition, the hated Denver Horse-faces. No doubt that adding Talib will make Denver tougher to beat. But, if the Broncos hadn't signed him, they likely would have signed Revis; You addressed this in "the good". I think you put it here because there was no ugly. If you wanted an ugly it should have been what was not addressed.

     

    II. Draft: Though the Pats had strengthened themselves at CB and somewhat at WR, they failed to adequately address their multiple needs, at LB, SS, and on both the DL (specially for a pass-rusher) and OL...heading into the 2014 draft. Did the Pats fill any or all of those needs?:

    1.) Dominique Easley, Florida (29th overall): Picking at #29, and apparently failing to find an adequate trade-down, BB reached for a guy who, "if healthy", could provide the team with someone who could serve as an interior pass-rusher on the DL. But, Easley tore up his left knee in 2011, and his right knee last season (ACL/MCL). For this reason, he dropped on most boards, from a top 20 pick, to a late second to mid-third rounder. As we speak, he is still rehabbing his right knee, and likely will miss at least the complete preseason. As a means of defending this pick, it was rumored that Seattle wanted him at #32. Even if true, the champion Seahawks already have a great defense, and could afford to redshirt a talent like Easley. But, the Patriots do not have a great defense, and needed immediate help. One wonders whether BB learned anything from the Ras-I Dowling experience?; It is only a reach if he could have been had later. He was not going to be had in the middle second round let alone late second round. THe rumour about Seattle appears to be more than a rumour. ANd the fact they are good has zero to do with anything! Zero. Moreover, they in fact lost some of their D line rotation in FA.

    You also make a fantasy football assumption (I know, that is a great insult, but hear me out):  pass rush is not only for outside rushers.  You seem to say that he does not add to our pass rush. Well, NO rookie does till they make the team and show it on the field but at THIS point in time Easley looks like (assuming health) he is an especially good inside pass rusher. He is not a bull rusher like Vinny. He has a blazing first step and power. ANd he would be a good match with a guy like Vinny. You are looking for fodder to print as if you are a sports writer trying too hard. Sorry, I really do not mean to insult but I think you are trying too hard here.

    2.) Jimmy Garoppolo, Eastern Illinois (62nd overall): Could be that, despite his gaudy college stats (53 TDs and just 9 picks last season) and lightning quick release, Garoppolo was undervalued due to the quality of competition he played against. Though not quite as tall as one would like (6'2"), and with smaller hands than preferred (which could lead to fumbles and turnovers, especially in inclement weather), this guy appears to have the leadership qualities and work ethic necessary to develop into a starting NFL QB. Folks, whether we like it or not, Tom Brady is 37 years old...and his skills may be starting to erode. A replacement must be found. If Garoppolo shows progress and promise, 2014 may be the final year of the Brady era in New England; You are a little light here (so trying not hard enough!?). You mention his hands and fumbles. Not his important qualities - which I believe are some of the things that BB believes he NEEDS in his next SB winning QB.

    3.) OC Brian Stork, Florida State (105th overall):After a good 2012 season as a starting center, Ryan Wendell was terrible last year. His poor play was highlighted in the AFC title game, when he was dominated by DT Terrence Knighton. Though Wendell was by no means singularly responsible, poor OL play resulted in the Patriots being unable to run the ball in that game, leading to a crushing defeat. Perhaps Stork, the recipient of the Remington Trophy as the best center in college football, can be an upgrade?;

    4.) RB James White, Wisconsin (#130th overall): A pick that was seemingly necessitated to replace the departed LeGarrette Blount. Could serve as a Kevin Faulk type...as he has good hands, and is an effective part-time runner. But, the wiser course appears to have been to give Blount his modest two year deal, rather than have to spend a late 4th round pick on an unproven commodity; I do not see it as wiser as much as different. And furthermore it is also a matter of cost. We dont like to say that. But Blount would have cost us significantly more and that money could be used elsewhere. This is a place where you and I might still go for Blount (and WHite?) but BB wants that money for elsewhere. Good that you did bring up the Faulk ananology.

    5.) OT Cameron Fleming, Stanford (#140 overall): Not a bad spot to add depth on the OL, or even a potential starter at RT. With Sebastien Vollmer's chronic back problems, and the ineffectiveness of RG Dan Connelly, this addition may allow BB to move RT Marcus Cannon inside to replace Connelly, while Fleming holds the fort at RT;

    6.) OG Jon Halapio, Florida (179th overall): Could also be the answer as an upgrade at RG over Connelly...or...practice squad material; I am doubtful this guy ends up a starter only because he has little athleticism which will hurt him pulling and pass blocking. BUt he has not even suited up. SO of course whatever you or I say is conjecture. I prefer Cannon at RG - will another rookie free him up some to move inside?

    7.) DE Zach Moore, Concordia (198th overall): Pass rushing project who could oust the disappointing Jake Bequette, or fellow project Michael Buchanan. Moore has the prototype size and speed on a 4-3 NFL DE. Had 33 sacks in three years for his Division II school. A good gamble at this point in the draft;

    8.) DB Jemea Thomas, Georgia Tech (206th overall): An undersized (5'9") safety/CB, who notched 88 tackles last season for the Yellow-jackets. Could be the addition that signals the end for the disappointing Tavon Wilson in New England;

    9.) WR Jeremy Gallon, Michigan (244th overall): Isn't this the typical guy that the Pats seemingly grab every year, either late in the draft (Jeremy Ebert), or as an undrafted free agent (T.J. Moe)? Kudos to BB for not making nice with the media or Roger Goodell, by drafting Michael Sam. Let the Rams deal with that major league distraction. I dont know whether Sam will be good or even make the team. But to say this is not something I can get behind at all. If Sam was the first African American (I would hope) you would not be saying that. I would hope and expect that it had little to do with BBs decision.

     

    SUMMARY: How Easley and Garoppolo fare will determine the success or failure of this draft. If they both pan out, this will be an "A+" draft, no matter how the other picks fare. If just one of the two pan out, it will be a "B" draft...increasing to a "B+", or even an "A-", if Garoppolo turns out to be a quality NFL QB. But, it appears that these selections will not appreciably strengthen the team. The reason why the Pats went in this direction goes back to a statement that Robert Kraft made after he hired BB. It went something like, "The mission statement of this team is to be like the old Tom Landry Dallas Cowboys of the 70s and 80s...to compete every year for a championship". In other words, the Pats aren't going to go "all in" on any one season, regardless of how many years that Tom Brady has left. Credit BB for making efforts to strengthen the OL, after the 2013 OL allowed Tom Terrific to be sacked 40 times last year, and get hit far too often.

    If not for the Blount move, I would have really liked what the Pats did in the offseason. I also question why the Pats spent so much money on WR Lafell. It makes me think that BB has doubts about the health of Aaron Dobson. As for the draft, time will tell whether BB the GM hit a homerun, or took the Golden Sombrero. Holes seemingly remain at SS, at DL depth, and at LB depth. Look for major changes in 2015, if the Pats fail to make it to the SB in 2014. Again, while I also liked Blount I think you and I overdid our initial reaction. Also, again, I do not think LaFell has ANYTHING to do with Dobson. I think they are so very different. LaFell is more like Givens I think.

     

     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from BabeParilli. Show BabeParilli's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    Other than signing Revis, the offseason has been a disaster. BB permanently resides in da da land these days.

     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from WazzuWheatfarmer. Show WazzuWheatfarmer's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to BabeParilli's comment:

    Other than signing Revis, the offseason has been a disaster. BB permanently resides in da da land these days.



    Nice try old man.  Go find a fresh pair of Depends and get back to us when you learn something about football.

     
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from BabeParilli. Show BabeParilli's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to WazzuWheatfarmer's comment:

    In response to BabeParilli's comment:

    Other than signing Revis, the offseason has been a disaster. BB permanently resides in da da land these days.



    Nice try old man.  Go find a fresh pair of Depends and get back to us when you learn something about football.




    [object HTMLDivElement]

     

    I have to ignore your hate speech.

     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from Muzwell. Show Muzwell's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to portfolio1's comment:

    With the passing of the 2014 NFL draft, Here's my early take on the 2014 New England Patriots:

    I. Free Agency:

    ....I expect LaFell is hoped to be a regular though not central contributor. He is little like Dobson except that he is not short. He should be more like a Givens type receiver and Dobson more a guy to help stretch the field a little. 

    Are you sure you're talking about Dobson? He is 6-3, Lafell is 6-2. 

    ....(2) Bolden was little like Corey though Corey's name came up. He showed more power than in the past but nothing like Corey power. What he showed was enough of a burst to break longer runs and that little extra power to break open when he was arm tackled or to get an extra yard when hit directly. (3) As regards White - we dont know what we have yet but consider his qualities and skills. I agree we expect he will be a role player. BUt role players are not created equal. You are dismissive. I can think of a number of role players in the history of the league (especially as the league became more intent on using more than throwing your starting 22 at my starting 22). In this case I see many similarities with Kevin Faulk. Now I admit, agree I don't even know if White makes the team. But if he is a Faulk-like player his role playing will be an important facet of the offense.

    Not sure I'd compare Bolden (or anybody else) to Dillon, but I don't think Blount will be missed. He performed better than I thought he would when they brought him over, but this is not a league where you feature an RB any more. It's a committee position, unless you have an AP type player, and Blount will NEVER be confused with AP. All the RBs they have are capable and they won't miss Blount any more than they missed Laurence Maroney. 

    .... It is only a reach if he could have been had later. He was not going to be had in the middle second round let alone late second round. THe rumour about Seattle appears to be more than a rumour. ANd the fact they are good has zero to do with anything! Zero. Moreover, they in fact lost some of their D line rotation in FA.

    You also make a fantasy football assumption (I know, that is a great insult, but hear me out):  pass rush is not only for outside rushers.  You seem to say that he does not add to our pass rush. Well, NO rookie does till they make the team and show it on the field but at THIS point in time Easley looks like (assuming health) he is an especially good inside pass rusher. He is not a bull rusher like Vinny. He has a blazing first step and power. ANd he would be a good match with a guy like Vinny. You are looking for fodder to print as if you are a sports writer trying too hard. Sorry, I really do not mean to insult but I think you are trying too hard here.

    Looking forward to seeing Easley line up on this defense. I can't think of a similar player on this team, maybe ever, at least not in the BB-era? He seems to have more of a Sapp type three technique skillset that didn't really fit their style. Times they area changin, I guess?



     
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from prolate0spheroid. Show prolate0spheroid's posts

    Re: Patriots Offseason Review

    In response to TexasPat's comment:

    In response to joepatsfan111111's comment:

    one thing taken from this whole thread,....

    Blount is way overrated.

    If he had his two huge games in week 1 and 2 then did what he did all season you would most likely have a different feel about him.

    He was no better than Ridley besides holding onto the ball.

     

    I know I'm beating a dead horse when I say it, but Ridley can overcome fumbling. players have done it before. Ridley also ran for 1200 yards in 2012. he will easily break 1,000 again this year and maybe even 1,200 too..

    Stop underrating him. stop overrating blount. he was replaced by doug martin in tampa and will dissolve behind LeVeon Bell in Pitt.

    RESPONSE: Sorry...but I don't think I'm overrating Blount. He ran like Corey Dillon last year...and to let him go sign elsewhere for a relatively small amount seems to me to be a mistake. BB erred in the same fashion on Danny Woodhead last year. Also, I'm not saying that Jams White is a bad player. On the contrary, he seems to fit what the Pats do on offense very well. I just wish that BB had kept Blount, too.        






    Blount only had 153 regular season carries.  In 2004, Dillon had 345.  People remember Blount's big games at the end of the season, but he had only modest impact for much of the season.  He very much ran hot and cold. Dillon was a game changer, game after game.  I don't think the two are even close. 

     
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