2020 Patriots Season:
Upcoming Opponent:
Next Up: vs 49ers
Pick Results: SF: 27.7% at NE: 72.3%
Sun
Oct 25th

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patfanken

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In the run up to this game I opined that this will be a fun game to watch and we shouldn't read too much into the result regardless of how it went. In every season what happens in September rarely indicates what is going to happen in December. No doubt being 1-0 is a much better result that the other alternative, especially given you are going to be playing the 3 top superbowl favorites in the next 3 games, 2 of which are on the road. Going into October with a 2-2 record will be a great accomplishment for this team. Anything better will be a miracle, anything worse will hardly be a death knell.

I said this game will only give us "inklings" of what this team can become. Lets start discussing some of those inklings.

1. The offense:

a. General offensive thoughts

1. I don't think we will see many games in the future where Cam has 16 designed runs (2nd highest in his career). This is the new Patriot offense on training wheels. It did enough to win a game even though we left 10 points on the field and probably more given the poor series after Phillips pick. Here is what I think we know for certain. The OL is the biggest strength of the team. This team will want to establish the run in every game and NEED to play the game from the lead. It is NOT a team that will be at its best in a shootout.....and given the offenses of the next 3 teams I will be hard pressed to see how it won't need to be able to win a shootout some of the time. We shall see.

2. So I thought it was a REALLY good job of creating a game plan by Josh. Seemed like there was good communications going on between the OC and QB. The team was amazingly disciplined for so early in this disjointed season as I don't recall a single offside, illegal motion, or even a holding call. That is a really good sign going forward.

3. As more and more teams see film on this offense, I suspect teams will start to present a lot more 8 man fronts, just like Miami started to do with some success midway through the 2nd quarter. They will also see more attacking LB's to combat play action passes and try to get immediate pressure on Cam while his back is to the LOS. (as we saw in the 2 sacks Cam took.


B. QB- my first realization about Cam that I hadn't fully understood was just how damned BIG he is. There was a play where he got up among all the Miami DLmen and Pats OLmen, and Cam seemed like he was bigger than many of them. The dude is HUGE. But overall I think this was a great FIRST outing for him. Josh gave him a lot of simple reads and designed runs to execute and for the most part he did them well. He wasn't exactly stretched much in the passing game with only 19 throws, mostly in the short range level. But on the plus side he looked like he was very accurate and had plenty of zip in his arm. All of which bodes well for the future.

If I had one complaint, it would be that he didn't get out of the 2 sacks he incurred when Miami penetrated the gap left by the pulling G and Cam had his back turned. Cam needs to either change the play or at least change the blocking scheme.

C. OL - Pretty much as good as advertised to my eye. The 2 sacks were a large part the result of a scheme flaw compounded by the fact the QB didn't get out of the play or the blocking scheme. The biggest questions where about the effectiveness of Eleumanur/Onwenu combination at RT. And while I didn't see them make any huge plays, the fact I didn't hear their names called at all, was as good as I wanted to see. I'm sure when all the breakdowns are done by mid week, we will see the both played adequately well.

Great to have David Andrews back in the middle. He makes a huge difference.

D. TE- Ryan Izzo made a great adjustment to his route on his 20+ yd catch and run, Anasassi didn't play any meaningful snaps in the passing game, so his impact to this team and the TE position is yet to be known.

E. WR - Jules killed a drive with drop. Not a bad drop, but one he wishes he had back. Harry's fumble through the endzone turned out to be a 15 point swing in the game and a lesson he will not soon forget. Granted he was trying to make an extra effort play, BUTTTT, nothing is more important than the possession of the ball. Situation football lesson. ON first down, there is nothing wrong with making a gain and having 2nd and goal on the 1.

I would have liked to have seen some production out of Meyers and Byrd, but they didn't get any targets so I don't know if they were open or not. We should know by later in the week.

2. Defensive general thoughts: It was good where we thought it would be, better than we thought where we had worries

a. The front 7 - Well we all knew the 2ndary was going to be good.....and we weren't disappointed, but I thought the DL was stronger than I thought and we got great contributions all across the front seven. Miami had only 87 total rushing on 27 rushes and that includes a 12 yd scramble from Fitzy. And before you start telling me that the Phins were the worst rushing team in the league last season, THAT team ran all over and around us in week 17 against a team that INCLUDED, Shelton, Collins, Hightower, Roberts and Van Noy.

b. Jennings got the start along with Bentley and they for the most part they filled their gaps pretty well. Room for improvement, but still...

c. Winovich was a guy who we all hoped was going to make the jump, and it seemed he did. He had the 2nd most tackles on the D and got most of them in an area of weakness for him last season, the run game.

d. I'm going to put a comment here on Adrian Phillips in this group since he played most of his defensive snaps at LB leading the team with 9 (8 solo) as well as picking up a pick in coverage. Pat on MY back (;) ) since this confirms (at least so far) didn't lose anything from Chung's opting out and might have just upgraded the position.

e Kudos to Adam Butler and Byron Cowart who got a lot of meaningful snaps and did a nice job clogging up the middle. Cowart flashed a couple of time to me, and I'm hopeful his contributions will grow as the season wears on.

f. Secondary - Good as advertised. Gilmore got tagged with a couple of ticky tack calls imho, but neither lapsed into the category of "bad calls". But like Romo pointed out on several occasions, Gilmore seemed to be running the WR routes like he knew they were coming. Worth every penny. JC got a direct kudo from Bill in his post game comments (unusual btw) and the rest of the secondary was just as solid.

1. I was wondering when and how we were going to see JJ Williams used this season, and now we know the answer. Between JJones, JC, Gilmore, and JMcCourty, there aren't a lot of snaps available at CB for him. I still think that eventually he WILL become a guy who can shut down a big WR, but now he's just a luxury at CB. Today we saw him where he is likely to get a lot of run this season as Covering the oppositions top receiving TE. Last season Gesicki had 53 catches for 570 yds. and 5 TD's - Similar to Gronks rookie numbers except for the TD's. Bigger things were expect of him this season. But when the Pats put Williams on him in man coverage, Gesicki managed only 3 catches and 30 yds and every ONE of those catches were fiercely contested by Williams in very tight coverage, requiring a great pass and a good catch to manage those meager yds.

I am eagerly looking forward to see if they put him on Kelce in 2 weeks vs KC.

2. This team seems to thrive on man coverage. They have have the size and speed to match up with a lot of offensive threats and make lives difficult for even the best of receivers. By utilizing Phillips as a coverage LB and the 6'4 Williams as a TE specialist, they have the depth and positional flexibility to go to man coverages a lot more than most teams.

3. On the downside, this team isn;t going to be one that can generate a consistent and effective pass rush with individual efforts. Like much of last year, pressure needs to be choreographed and schemed around the talents of the group to create effective pressure. It's a fact of life. No Aaron Donald's on this team. Timing and great schemes will be needed....as well as great coverage, to create sacks and hurries.

4. Derrick Rivers got the the only sack for the Pats this game. Good for him. A nice reward for a kid who has spent the better part of his 3 year career rehabbing. Now he's going to get his chance to see if all the Pats patience with was worth it.

SPECIAL TEAMS

a. The punter and his coverage team were excellent this game. no more need to be said.

b. FG's - not so much. The FG had literally no chance from the moment it left Faulk's foot. It was an ugly miss wide right, VERY wide right. I noticed that even his successful extra points all drifted right. The last one seemed to be his best kick of the day, so maybe this is a fixable situation and it will improve as the season goes on. We shall see. This team isn't good enough, at least at this point, to blow people out, so I think we are going to see a LOT of one possession games this season and having a reliable FG kicker will be a necessity.

Other thoughts from the NFL today -

I watch a little bit of the Bucs Saints game and I came away with one GLARING observation. Every time the camera panned to Brady on the sidelines he was looking at replays on his device and talking to his back up. Never, not once, was their a coach in the picture sharing his thoughts like we've seen all these years with Charlie and Josh. I found that odd.

Other than that, I thought he moved well in the pocket and had plenty of zip on the ball, but he didn't look comfortable or as in control as he did while he was there. Granted it is VERY early, but I expected more from a Buc offense that had so many offensive weapons.

In other news the Jets, Colts Philly and the Cowboys all lost and that makes me smile. :D
 
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DropKickFlutie

In the Starting Line-Up
1. I'd like to see TE Asiasi involved more. He's picked up the playbook and is an athletic freak

2. I didn't realize Jennings started at LB. That's an excellent sign. Keep Copeland off the field, Copeland is terrible. A LB combination of Winovich / Jennings / Simon / Uche group where the Pats play mostly nickel and dime anyway with JaJuan and Philips at SS and pass-defending LB, should hopefully be ok.

3. Byrd had zero passes. The offense is in dire need of another WR.

4. Both QB rushing TDs were off right tackle. So I can't pronounce either RT's last name but it seemed effective.

.
 
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Bill Lee

What, me worry?
PatsFans.com Supporter
In other news the Jets, Colts Philly and the Cowboys all lost and that makes me smile. :D
Fitzy threw three picks when his team was on the move. MIA closed the game to 3 in the 4th quarter. A strong game from Fitzy like week 17 of last year could have made things look pretty different, with a swing in points and time of possession.

On the good news front the Jills only beat the putrid Jete by 10. It'd be nice if this transition team could still take home the AFCE title.
 

Boomer B

2nd Team Getting Their First Start
Well thought out write up. My thoughts;

O - I said last week we will need to win some tight low scoring games. We need to be able to run to win and we did that well today. Sets up play action and Cam has some nice open throws over the middle. After the drop Edelman settled in and played well. Harry is a disappointment. The fumble sucked but what sucked more is we had to scheme just to get the ball in his hands. He just can’t get open on normal WR routes. We absolutely need another WR or TE to step up to take the pressure off Cam and Edelman. This O will not go far with only 1 reliable receiving target. Opposition will stack the box and will force us to pass. If Edelman gets injured again this year we are really screwed. Kudos to the oline for a well played game.

D - the Phins couldn’t get anything going. Our secondary just smothered them all game. Not sure if it was because our D is that great or because of their lack of talent and Fitzpatrick’s doing his Fitztragic routine. Probably a bit of both. We are not playing a cream puff QB next week so we’ll see where we sit.

Overall, a good win and nice to be 1-0. Still seeing some of the things that haunted us last year, namely any WR or TE not named Edelman being able to get separation and get open. We can survive that against teams like the Dolphins, but it’s gonna be very difficult against the good teams if we can’t pass. On to Seattle.
 

thecore762

In the Starting Line-Up
This team needs to make every possession count, we are not going to be lighting up the score board with the current roaster, if anything this team is build to grind winds, long drives and possession is the key with Cam running the offense.
Hoping Harry finally becomes the player we all wanted him to be.

Pass rush is going to be an issue with this team this year. With no Hightower it’s going to be tough, especially run stopping.
He will be missed.
Chung not being there also sucks.
Hopefully taking the year off will help both Chung and Hightower become healthy.
 

Flash

Third String But Playing on Special Teams
2020 Weekly NFL Picks Winner
I don't mind the designed runs early in the season, since defenses don't know what to expect yet and Harry isn't ready to consistently contribute, but I still believe we have to cut that down a bit as we progress. Cam is 31 years old and has been through a lot of injuries, everybody knows this. His legs are dangerous but Josh McDaniels really should be trying to protect the QB. One bad hit and Cam is done for the season. Try to save the designed run plays for the Playoffs and lean on Edelman/Harry/White more even if it costs us a few games.
 

DropKickFlutie

In the Starting Line-Up
I don't mind the designed runs early in the season, since defenses don't know what to expect yet and Harry isn't ready to consistently contribute, but I still believe we have to cut that down a bit as we progress. Cam is 31 years old and has been through a lot of injuries, everybody knows this. His legs are dangerous but Josh McDaniels really should be trying to protect the QB. One bad hit and Cam is done for the season. Try to save the designed run plays for the Playoffs and lean on Edelman/Harry/White more even if it costs us a few games.

Reminds me of 2005 when McD repeatedly left Brady exposed for huge hits all season. Totally different offense but the same mentality of over-using plays and leaving your starting QB vulnerable.

.
 

luuked

PatsFans.com Supporter
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2. So I thought it was a REALLY good job of creating a game plan by Josh. Seemed like there was good communications going on between the OC and QB. The team was amazingly disciplined for so early in this disjointed season as I don't recall a single offside, illegal motion, or even a holding call. That is a really good sign going forward.

I think one of the interesting subplots with Brady going to Tampa is that a lot more people will watch full games of another team and might learn to appreciate how much other teams keep shooting themselves into the foot with lack of focus on details and undisciplined penalties. The secret to success is the organization of the non obvious and when it comes to all the small things -- which have a large cumulative effect through a game -- the Bucs were a clown show yesterday.

If I had one complaint, it would be that he didn't get out of the 2 sacks he incurred when Miami penetrated the gap left by the pulling G and Cam had his back turned. Cam needs to either change the play or at least change the blocking scheme.

Totally agree but on one of them the playclock was down to a second or so and he just didn't have the time to adjust. Should have been a timeout.

b. FG's - not so much. The FG had literally no chance from the moment it left Faulk's foot. It was an ugly miss wide right, VERY wide right. I noticed that even his successful extra points all drifted right. The last one seemed to be his best kick of the day, so maybe this is a fixable situation and it will improve as the season goes on. We shall see. This team isn't good enough, at least at this point, to blow people out, so I think we are going to see a LOT of one possession games this season and having a reliable FG kicker will be a necessity.

We know Folk is limited once we get into the 45+ territory. I also saw this interesting stat on Twitter that essentially says that kicking a 45 towards the lighthouse at Gillette has historically about the same success rate as kicking a 50 into the other direction:


The difficulty to replace Ghost really just makes you appreciate the amazing run we had at kicker with Vinatieri and Ghost so much more.
 

DarrylS

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2019 Weekly Picks Winner
Ken I appreciate how you create a very readable synopsis & analysis of this game, my go to after any Pats game due to it's brevity and factual information... better than most.

With the absence of a preseason this was the first episode of the Pats 2020.. wasn't sure what to expect with a new QB who was not able to do any preseason games or scrimmage work.. the results were positive.

No fans sux...

From my comfy couch couple of observations:

Using Newton the way they did will make future opposition wary of him and that may work to our benefit.. as he can change his role as needed, I do not expect that many runs in the future.

The PI calls on Gilmore were a tad ticky tacky and as reigning D POY gotta wonder if he has a target on his back.

Aside from Izzo the lack of receptions by a TE is concerning, that was a deficit last year and this year it needs to improve.

The Defensive Backfield is impressive in quality and depth, had forgotten all about Joe Juan WIlliams until late in the game.. the absence of Chung was not noticed.

The O line looked fine, couple of screw ups.. Michel ran hard...

How tough is it to transition to a QB who on the hand off holds the ball that long in the belly of the RB??

Gotta figure out who will be our FG kicker, the Folk FG attempt was long (47 yards), but this whole area is a serious deficit and BB has to decide on what direction he is going in. Thought Bailey's KO's were impressive.. do not remember any runbacks by Miami.

It was a win against an improved division opponent who kicked the crap out of us last year.. Flores will be a good coach and is gathering core talent to make this team better now and in the future.
 

farn

Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal
Early still, but interesting that Byrd & Harry played much more than Edelman. Having said that : unless things change in a hurry, it’s vital to the success of this team for #11 to remain healthy. The running should be the focus all year, but eventually you need a big catch. And Edelman might be the only consistent non-RB able to do that.
 

Patsfanin Philly

Pro Bowl Player
I watch a little bit of the Bucs Saints game and I came away with one GLARING observation. Every time the camera panned to Brady on the sidelines he was looking at replays on his device and talking to his back up. Never, not once, was their a coach in the picture sharing his thoughts like we've seen all these years with Charlie and Josh. I found that odd.
I wonder if Leftwich and Christensen ( QB coach) are intimidated by Brady and are afraid to 'coach' him.......
 

Doctor DDS

Third String But Playing on Special Teams
Thought Cam was exceptional with the ball fakes and never realized how long he'd keep the ball in the RB's gut. Pats should be deadly at play action if that success continues and more plays like the Izzo one should be available.

One negative I noticed that seemed to be an issue last year as well is the inability to get a decent punt return. Not sure if it is bad blocking or just great punting by the other team but I cannot remember the last time the punt returner was able to catch the ball with any space and gain positive yardage.
 

PScottman

2nd Team Getting Their First Start
a lot more people will watch full games of another team and might learn to appreciate how much other teams keep shooting themselves into the foot with lack of focus on details and undisciplined penalties

Symbiotic. People can choose sides all they want - Brady's a traitor or BB the GM sucks to quote the two sides, but there are situations where it's the fit of the parts that makes the result more than just the individual skills. The most interesting tidbit - everyone talks about BB being a taskmaster concerned about seemingly every detail. Is that not the same exact thing with Brady expecting his WRs to be where the play is designed to go - a highly specific detail? Doesn't it make sense that such attention by both a coach and player symbiotically permeates across an entire team?

Now neither have the other. Will both or either be able to recapture that synergy in new environments with new teams? Will it be easier for one than the other? Both have demonstrated the force of will in the past - the interesting thing will be the ability to enforce it.
 

Patriot Missile

Pro Bowl Player
It was a good game and a fun watch. The front played well on defense which was a big question mark going in. Secondary performed like usual. Elite.

Oline was excellent, this was the most rushing yards by the Pats since the Jonas Gray game?

The only thing that may me kind of sad is what Ken alluded to is this team is built for a grind it out game or with a lead. The one thing I realized is gone for now anyway, is if the game gets out of hand this team probably isn’t coming back too many times.
 

p8ryts

2nd Team Getting Their First Start
2020 Weekly NFL Picks Winner
It was as good an opening as you could hope for with the existing parameters. Team discipline was outstanding. Coaching excellent. Execution very good. Clearly Cam can't run as often as he did but the film is out there and teams will have to be ready for it and its there when you need it. I was impressed with the pass game, very good accuracy, not a lot of drops, expect to see that expand. Front seven has possibilites, Winovich a beast, Cowart good, Steady Simon was steady, LB's did ok. I still don't get Wise, I tackle assist. I thought he would be gone this year. Would like to see Uche in pass rush role. Impressed with Izzo, 98% of plays, good blocking. Feeling better about fielding a competitive team. Really good to see 2nd and 3rd year players contributing. Tough test coming up.
 

upstater1

Pro Bowl Player
In the run up to this game I opined that this will be a fun game to watch and we shouldn't read too much into the result regardless of how it went. In every season what happens in September rarely indicates what is going to happen in December. No doubt being 1-0 is a much better result that the other alternative, especially given you are going to be playing the 3 top superbowl favorites in the next 3 games, 2 of which are on the road. Going into October with a 2-2 record will be a great accomplishment for this team. Anything better will be a miracle, anything worse will hardly be a death knell.

I said this game will only give us "inklings" of what this team can become. Lets start discussing some of those inklings.

1. The offense:

a. General offensive thoughts

1. I don't think we will see many games in the future where Cam has 16 designed runs (2nd highest in his career). This is the new Patriot offense on training wheels. It did enough to win a game even though we left 10 points on the field and probably more given the poor series after Phillips pick. Here is what I think we know for certain. The OL is the biggest strength of the team. This team will want to establish the run in every game and NEED to play the game from the lead. It is NOT a team that will be at its best in a shootout.....and given the offenses of the next 3 teams I will be hard pressed to see how it won't need to be able to win a shootout some of the time. We shall see.

2. So I thought it was a REALLY good job of creating a game plan by Josh. Seemed like there was good communications going on between the OC and QB. The team was amazingly disciplined for so early in this disjointed season as I don't recall a single offside, illegal motion, or even a holding call. That is a really good sign going forward.

3. As more and more teams see film on this offense, I suspect teams will start to present a lot more 8 man fronts, just like Miami started to do with some success midway through the 2nd quarter. They will also see more attacking LB's to combat play action passes and try to get immediate pressure on Cam while his back is to the LOS. (as we saw in the 2 sacks Cam took.


B. QB- my first realization about Cam that I hadn't fully understood was just how damned BIG he is. There was a play where he got up among all the Miami DLmen and Pats OLmen, and Cam seemed like he was bigger than many of them. The dude is HUGE. But overall I think this was a great FIRST outing for him. Josh gave him a lot of simple reads and designed runs to execute and for the most part he did them well. He wasn't exactly stretched much in the passing game with only 19 throws, mostly in the short range level. But on the plus side he looked like he was very accurate and had plenty of zip in his arm. All of which bodes well for the future.

If I had one complaint, it would be that he didn't get out of the 2 sacks he incurred when Miami penetrated the gap left by the pulling G and Cam had his back turned. Cam needs to either change the play or at least change the blocking scheme.

C. OL - Pretty much as good as advertised to my eye. The 2 sacks were a large part the result of a scheme flaw compounded by the fact the QB didn't get out of the play or the blocking scheme. The biggest questions where about the effectiveness of Eleumanur/Onwenu combination at RT. And while I didn't see them make any huge plays, the fact I didn't hear their names called at all, was as good as I wanted to see. I'm sure when all the breakdowns are done by mid week, we will see the both played adequately well.

Great to have David Andrews back in the middle. He makes a huge difference.

D. TE- Ryan Izzo made a great adjustment to his route on his 20+ yd catch and run, Anasassi didn't play any meaningful snaps in the passing game, so his impact to this team and the TE position is yet to be known.

E. WR - Jules killed a drive with drop. Not a bad drop, but one he wishes he had back. Harry's fumble through the endzone turned out to be a 15 point swing in the game and a lesson he will not soon forget. Granted he was trying to make an extra effort play, BUTTTT, nothing is more important than the possession of the ball. Situation football lesson. ON first down, there is nothing wrong with making a gain and having 2nd and goal on the 1.

I would have liked to have seen some production out of Meyers and Byrd, but they didn't get any targets so I don't know if they were open or not. We should know by later in the week.

2. Defensive general thoughts: It was good where we thought it would be, better than we thought where we had worries

a. The front 7 - Well we all knew the 2ndary was going to be good.....and we weren't disappointed, but I thought the DL was stronger than I thought and we got great contributions all across the front seven. Miami had only 87 total rushing on 27 rushes and that includes a 12 yd scramble from Fitzy. And before you start telling me that the Phins were the worst rushing team in the league last season, THAT team ran all over and around us in week 17 against a team that INCLUDED, Shelton, Collins, Hightower, Roberts and Van Noy.

b. Jennings got the start along with Bentley and they for the most part they filled their gaps pretty well. Room for improvement, but still...

c. Winovich was a guy who we all hoped was going to make the jump, and it seemed he did. He had the 2nd most tackles on the D and got most of them in an area of weakness for him last season, the run game.

d. I'm going to put a comment here on Adrian Phillips in this group since he played most of his defensive snaps at LB leading the team with 9 (8 solo) as well as picking up a pick in coverage. Pat on MY back (;) ) since this confirms (at least so far) didn't lose anything from Chung's opting out and might have just upgraded the position.

e Kudos to Adam Butler and Byron Cowart who got a lot of meaningful snaps and did a nice job clogging up the middle. Cowart flashed a couple of time to me, and I'm hopeful his contributions will grow as the season wears on.

f. Secondary - Good as advertised. Gilmore got tagged with a couple of ticky tack calls imho, but neither lapsed into the category of "bad calls". But like Romo pointed out on several occasions, Gilmore seemed to be running the WR routes like he knew they were coming. Worth every penny. JC got a direct kudo from Bill in his post game comments (unusual btw) and the rest of the secondary was just as solid.

1. I was wondering when and how we were going to see JJ Williams used this season, and now we know the answer. Between JJones, JC, Gilmore, and JMcCourty, there aren't a lot of snaps available at CB for him. I still think that eventually he WILL become a guy who can shut down a big WR, but now he's just a luxury at CB. Today we saw him where he is likely to get a lot of run this season as Covering the oppositions top receiving TE. Last season Gesicki had 53 catches for 570 yds. and 5 TD's - Similar to Gronks rookie numbers except for the TD's. Bigger things were expect of him this season. But when the Pats put Williams on him in man coverage, Gesicki managed only 3 catches and 30 yds and every ONE of those catches were fiercely contested by Williams in very tight coverage, requiring a great pass and a good catch to manage those meager yds.

I am eagerly looking forward to see if they put him on Kelce in 2 weeks vs KC.

2. This team seems to thrive on man coverage. They have have the size and speed to match up with a lot of offensive threats and make lives difficult for even the best of receivers. By utilizing Phillips as a coverage LB and the 6'4 Williams as a TE specialist, they have the depth and positional flexibility to go to man coverages a lot more than most teams.

3. On the downside, this team isn;t going to be one that can generate a consistent and effective pass rush with individual efforts. Like much of last year, pressure needs to be choreographed and schemed around the talents of the group to create effective pressure. It's a fact of life. No Aaron Donald's on this team. Timing and great schemes will be needed....as well as great coverage, to create sacks and hurries.

4. Derrick Rivers got the the only sack for the Pats this game. Good for him. A nice reward for a kid who has spent the better part of his 3 year career rehabbing. Now he's going to get his chance to see if all the Pats patience with was worth it.

SPECIAL TEAMS

a. The punter and his coverage team were excellent this game. no more need to be said.

b. FG's - not so much. The FG had literally no chance from the moment it left Faulk's foot. It was an ugly miss wide right, VERY wide right. I noticed that even his successful extra points all drifted right. The last one seemed to be his best kick of the day, so maybe this is a fixable situation and it will improve as the season goes on. We shall see. This team isn't good enough, at least at this point, to blow people out, so I think we are going to see a LOT of one possession games this season and having a reliable FG kicker will be a necessity.

Other thoughts from the NFL today -

I watch a little bit of the Bucs Saints game and I came away with one GLARING observation. Every time the camera panned to Brady on the sidelines he was looking at replays on his device and talking to his back up. Never, not once, was their a coach in the picture sharing his thoughts like we've seen all these years with Charlie and Josh. I found that odd.

Other than that, I thought he moved well in the pocket and had plenty of zip on the ball, but he didn't look comfortable or as in control as he did while he was there. Granted it is VERY early, but I expected more from a Buc offense that had so many offensive weapons.

In other news the Jets, Colts Philly and the Cowboys all lost and that makes me smile. :D

Great write up and thanks for looking at the play of the DL. Must admit my eye was on the backend much of the time, especially looking at the backers and safeties who are my big concern this year.

As Cam becomes more familiar with the playbook, the passing game will take shape, and hopefully he'll preserve himself so we won't rely on his runs. BUT I'm still very concerned about our WR situation and yesterday did nothing to give me more confidence there.

With Taylor, Burkhead, and White, I am starting to believe that Sony Michel may see fewer and fewer snaps as we go forward. He just didn't seem as effective as the others.

Let's work the TEs into the game more since they may loosen up the sad WR situation.

At least Newton had plenty of time when dropping back.

As for other games, I saw what you did with Brady. He was certainly not on the same page with his WRs and even with his backs and TEs on screens. Out of sync. On the other hand, anyone who thinks he's finished because of his arm or pocket awareness needs to think again because he had plenty of time back there by moving around the pocket, and at least 5 of his very long throws were pinpoint and on target (though only 2 or 3 of them were caught with the others results in DPIs).

It is hard to know if Arians/Leftwich have the patience to let Tom be Tom. I recall when Peyton moved to Denver his first year, his negotiation w/ the OC was disastrous at first and Peyton did not look right. Once he set his foot down and told the OC to play to his strengths, Peyton had a historic season. I don't know if Tom has the same personality to effect that kind of change, not with Arians as his head coach anyway.
 

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