Monday, September 25, 2006

The Best Defense Is A Good Defense

It took an elite defense to expose the flaws in the Patriots not-so-elite offense--a weakness that I (and many others) thought could be overcome by the sheer strength of the Belichick Way. Well, maybe not.

Tom Brady looked out of sync and extremely uncomfortable with his ability to compensate for a stalled running attack with his less than stellar receiving corps. There are just so many times you can go the well with Troy Brown and Ben Watson before the really good defenses (like Denver's) will figure it out and frustrate you at every turn. On Sunday night, in an embarrassing 17-7 loss to the Broncos, frustration was the watchword for your three-time champion New England Patriots.

It didn't help that two of the options that might have helped (Chad Jackson and Corey Dillon) were out of commission for most of the game. When your short-handed offense becomes further short-handed, you will likely end up on the short end of the stick. Bingo.

And, friends, it doesn't get any easier--as the Pats parachute into Cincinnati to face a feisty 3-0 Bengal squad. Fasten your seatbelts, 2006-7 might just be a bumpier ride than we had previously suspected.


Tom R said...

I was at the game and my perception by halftime was that the main problem after Dillon got injured was the play calling. The Pats didn't take any shots downfield at all until just before halftime. Regardless of the receiving core, we need to throw long to keep the opponents' defenses honest. After Dillon got hurt, we failed to try (never mind connect) downfield, then Denver tightened up in the middle and built a wall to stop Maroney. I realize the loss of Dillon gave The Broncos a huge advantage in stopping the run, but a few medium range connections to Watson and Troy Brown would have opened the running lanes up again. I do admit that Brady looked lost out there,with many over and underthrows but that was mostly in the second half after the frustration from not moving the ball set in. I have felt that the offensive gameplan has been unimaginative since game 1. It is time for a change. We need to consider a trick play and/or a long shot early in the game, even if it means throwing far downfield and hoping somebody runs under it. At least then the possibility of being beaten long will enter into the opposing teams' minds.

Max said...

I think it really hurt to have Jackson inactive. They need that home run hitter on the outside to spread out the D.

I really thought the Pats would take care of the Broncos at home. Maybe this team isn't as good as I thought it was.

Tom R said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Tom R said...

I agree that with Chad and Doug Gabriel playing the whole game opens up the long ball, but you gotta take a couple of shots nonetheless.

Before the season I thought The Pats would go 12-4, winning the division and going al least to the AFC Championship with a good chance to win it all. Now I feel that will still win the division, but unless we can manage to get the at least the 3 seed, we will be in the same predicament as last year. Lets hope we stay healthy and our WR core grows.