Tag Archives: Pats

Draft Day; Don’t Wait Up

2015-nfl-draft1

Sorry for the long hiatus. I’m still adjusting to the new schedule and really sleep in the morning weighs much heavier that spitting out a blog post.

But that being said, I couldn’t let today come without offering a little something. I mean it’s draft day. If you go back through my blog’s years of posts you’ll see, the draft is one of my favorite events. I still hate that it starts on a Thursday but what I can I do, they’re not changing it.

So tonight the Patriots hold the 32nd overall pick. The last pick in the first round. The pick that will be selected around 12:30AM. Maybe I’m exaggerating a little but it’ll definitely be late and definitely be picked long after I’ve gone to bed.

Here’s the deal, the people saying the Pats are going to keep the pick because Belichick values that extra year they get on a first round pick are nuts. When what he’s picking at 32 can easily be had in the mid 40’s for the same caliber of player, zero chance he picks when he can add a seventh round pick to his draft load but jumping back 10 picks.

The need exists desperately for a corner. My fanboy hope is that the Pats trade up, get into the teens and get a game changing corner. But realistic me knows that the three third round picks Belichick can get for his first is far too enticing.

So I recommend you get your sleep tonight, stay with it as long as you can, but don’t count on the Pats ending the night. I don’t think it’s going to happen.

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Another Lombardi Trophy

malcolm butler

There was a lot of back and forth leading up to the Super Bowl. The guys wanted me to meet them out at a bar in town. Then it became a bar on the north shore. I just didn’t want to go anywhere. I wanted to enjoy the game from the privacy of my living room. My TV, my couch, and of course another homemade jambalaya because that’s what I made AFC Championship week.

Early on it was apparent I’d chosen the correct venue. As Brady threw an early interception and a spew of profanities came from my mouth, I knew a bar may have asked me to politely leave. As the game went on I think the politeness would have vanished as they just kicked me and my filthy mouth out.

There were moments during that game that I thought about throwing away my allegiance completely. Similar to how I’d contemplated becoming a Pirates fan when the Red Sox pissed me off (when Pittsburgh was a perennial basement finisher not now when they compete in the central). Maybe being a Jaguar fan wouldn’t be so bad. Sure they have ugly ass uniforms and are the league’s doormat, at least you have low expectations every year.

I digress.

I was in a couple of group texts throughout the game. This was my lifeline to the outside world. So instead of me just screaming the f-word at the TV (which there were plenty), I could text my friends who had similar thoughts.

Down 10 I thought the magic was completely gone. We’d seen the picture play out too many times before. That old Brady magic where he’d lead the team back from a loss was gone. Brady just didn’t have it anymore. Especially in big games. We have two Giants Super Bowl losses to prove that.

The offense ran a stupid run play to the right that they’d just run to pick up a first down earlier only to be stuffed by the league’s #3 rush defense. I thought this could be the end. If Seattle scores here, we’re toast (yes we, I know).

But the defense did its job and got the Seahawks to three and out. They stopped Lynch twice and Ninkovich managed a huge sack on Wilson on third down. This led to the Pats third touchdown to cut the lead to three. 24-21.

My stomach in knots, my heart beating out of my chest, the only thing to do is grab another plate of jambalaya and ride it out. My west coast Pats friend on drink #8, sounded very much like Da Guy. “I have faith….don’t give up!”

Three and out again by the defense. So glad they took out Arington. He was killing the Pats.

The Pats get the ball back with six minutes and change on the board. I send out the text requesting a slow methodical drive that scores a touchdown with no time left on the clock. I almost get my wish as the Pats run it down to 2:02 when Brady hooks up with Edelman. Pats take a 28-24 lead.

OK defense, you’ve done it so far. Please just do it again.

Or not.

Mismatch with Collins on Lynch leads to a quick 31 yard gain and just like that the Seahawks are on the Patriots side of the field. More profanities and the two minute warning.

OK, just hold them here. You’ve proven you can do it, just do it again. After a first down a bomb down the sideline (please don’t be Arington there), incomplete. Wait what? He caught it?!? Why the hell didn’t Harmon kick it, punch it, anything except just jump over Kearse??

MORE PROFANITIES…

My mind starts racing back to the 2011 Super Bowl. Do the Pats just let them score here and you give Brady the ball with a minute to go? Is that enough time for him to get it into field goal range? Is there magic left after his previous two amazing drives?

Hightower somehow gets his arm out and stops Lynch on first down. I’m having flashes of the Green Bay game and how Lynch ran through the Packer defense when he needed to. Oh no. They line up with Lynch to the right of Wilson. Don’t be fooled, just because it’s a pass formation, it’s probably going to Lynch.

The ball is snapped…

OH MY GOD!!!!!! (as my arms are in the air)

Malcolm Butler picks off Wilson in the end zone!!

Complete and total elation. Almost. I’m trying to figure out in my head if the Pats give up a safety since they’re on the one, how well could they punt it and hold Wilson and the Seahawks down again?

Brady pulls them offsides for a little breathing room and the game is over. The Patriots are Super Bowl Champions! How in the hell am I going to fall asleep??

For all that each of their Super Bowl victories were close, this was far and away the best game. So much drama. So much back and forth. So much me on the edge of the couch.

I sit here a day later, almost exactly 24 hours removed and still can’t believe it. The #AZRedemption is complete. The Brady and Belichick dynasty is tops. Get the duckboats ready!

Tom Brady

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Pats Get Baltimore

NFL: AFC Wild Card Playoff-Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers

As my wife and I watched non-Patriots football all weekend, I turned to her at one point and said “This is how powerful the NFL is. Games that we couldn’t care less about, yet we’re glued to the TV.”

We were glued to the Ravens Steelers game Saturday night. All of the experts said that they feared Pittsburgh. Ben Roethlisberger had an MVP-like season. He wasn’t consistent enough to knock off Aaron Rodgers for the award but he carried his team on his back. There was a stretch of games where he threw for like 800+ yards and 11 TDs in two games alone.

So based on the experts reporting, I didn’t want the Pats having to face Pittsburgh. That’s of course assuming the Pats would have beat Cinci or Indy and Denver would have lost to Pittsburgh, but you get the point.

But it was all for not as the Pats are looking at Baltimore on their schedule for Saturday afternoon.

Again, going off what the experts tell me, we shouldn’t be scared heading into Saturday. Not just the normal, our team is the #1 seed and they just squeaked into the playoffs type confidence. The line of thinking that was presented was actually pretty decent.

Remember when the Pats hosted them a few years ago and Ray Rice ran it 80 yards on the first play from scrimmage and the Pats ended up chasing them all game? Well, Ray Rice is gone. Replaced by Justin Forsett who was a fantasy stud for me this season, but he’s smaller than Rice and not as good as Rice in his prime.

The feared Baltimore defense with Ed Reed, Ray Lewis and Terrell Suggs? Reed and Lewis have retired and Suggs is a shell of his former self. They added former Bronco Elvis Dumervil to the fold, but that scary Ravens defense that won them a couple Super Bowls is long gone.

I’m not predicting a cake walk on Saturday, but I think Pats fans should have a little confidence heading into the game. Friday I’ll have my official prediction.

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To The Top Of The Power Rankings

pats-koolaid

ESPN released their updated power rankings yesterday and the Pats found themselves sitting at the top. It wasn’t a huge jump for them since they were #3 the week prior. They knocked off Denver who’d been at the top and leapfrogged the Cardinals in the process.

I know the power rankings mean nothing in the grand scheme of things but I would think the Cardinals with one less loss than the Pats, playing in a much tougher division with the 49ers and Seahawks would vault them above the Patriots.

The Broncos dropped a couple of spots and are still ranked #3 overall after their loss in Foxboro on Sunday.

I’m not ready to drink the Kool-Aid like above but it’s quite obvious listening to sports radio that other people are. They’re booking flights to Phoenix and trying to get hotel rooms.

Let’s pump the brakes on that. I’m not saying our hometown team sucks or anything, but we’ve seen big wins in November and December before. Let’s see where they stand heading into December and January before we start planning parades.

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Peyton Face

peyton manning face

Looking back in the blog this isn’t the first time we’ve talked about Peyton face. I mean, looking back this isn’t even the first time I’ve used the same headline.

See way back when, thinking pre-Facebook and even pre-MySpace when all the guys would get together and watch every Pats game, we noticed Peyton face. Something isn’t going his way, he doesn’t get a call, they’re intercepting him for the third time in an AFC Championship game, we’d see that face. So we dubbed it Peyton face.

As Da Guy pointed out yesterday, it has evolved into a Manning face since his brother Eli makes the same exact face. But since the Pats lost two Super Bowls to Eli and are 11-5 against Peyton, I’ll continue with Peyton face.

When I looked out my window around 1PM yesterday I was almost giddy thinking that it would be snowing in Foxboro for the game. I busted out the old Peyton face picture (Colts getting beat in Foxboro) and posted on Twitter that I really hoped for more of it yesterday.

And we got plenty.

He tried to keep his head up after the opening three and out. He even tried after the second one. But after the interception by Ninkovich, the missed field goal, and the failed fourth and six where he was sacked by Ayers, the Peyton face was out and in full effect.

You could even hear the crowd in the fourth quarter “Brady’s better!!”.

The Peyton face stayed too, all the way to the post game press conference where he said, “Well, I don’t usually stink, but I stunk today.”

I don’t know what happened after Kansas City but this Pats team looks different. A good kind of different. If they can stay healthy, they look scary good to the rest of the league. Now let’s see how they handle this tough stretch after the bye.

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Mankins Traded

Logan Mankins

I’ve digested the news. Logan Mankins traded to the Bucs for an undrafted tight end out of Rutgers and a fourth round pick.

Doesn’t mean I have to like it. I think this deal is garbage.

The problem is, we’ll never get all the details. We may get pieces now that Logan isn’t here, but I have zero confidence that we’ll get the whole story.

Here’s my theory; Mankins was going to get cut. It was strictly salary related, but he was going to get cut. The Pats likely went to him and asked him to restructure his deal to be more cap friendly and since he had to fight so hard for this deal, told the Pats no chance in hell.

So Bill got on the phone to his buddy Jason Licht down in Tampa who used to work in New England and said give me what you can and Mankins is yours. Belichick probably pushed for a second or third rounder and it wasn’t happening. Most team in the league probably saw the writing on the wall and knew Mankins could be a cut so they pushed back. It’ll be a fourth but we’ll throw in any one of the players on this list.

Belichick’s eyes bulged out of his head at the opportunity to have another shitty Rutgers player on the team and took the fourth rounder and Tim Wright. Someone really needs to tell Belichick that good football players don’t go to Rutgers. They go to schools like USC, Michigan, Texas, Oregon, Alabama, and LSU. You know teams that compete for National Championships. Not teams that draw 400 people to their games.

So the team once again makes a move where they think they’re smarter than the rest of the league. I think they swung and missed on this one. They’re offensive line has looked far from perfect this preseason, I don’t know how trading your best one helps the team.

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Injury Laden Pats Roll Late

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Vince Wilfork, Jerod Mayo, Tommy Kelly, Sebastian Vollmer, all on IR. Talib inactive again with his injury. Then you lose Steve Gregory, Rob Ninkovich, and Austin Collie during the game. The Pats are devastated with injuries.

The team took a 14 point lead into halftime. It was exactly how Belichick likes to do it. Score right before the half and receive to start the second half. Before the opponent has a chance to blink, you’re up two scores.

But that didn’t happen.

Following a Ridley fumble I was sure was going burry him on the bench, the Steelers scored first to start the third quarter. A quick three and out by the Pats and another Steelers TD had the game tied at 24. Remember that?

Probably not.

You probably remember the Pats going up 10 and calming down a bit. We had no idea that Pittsburgh would just lay down from there. I mean sure they got that TD that got them to 31 but on the other side it was a 2007-esque Patriots offense.

A clock killing series of runs by the not buried Ridley and then an 81 yard bomb to Dobson sprinting down the sideline; that’s the Dobson I thought they’d drafted. And then Blount adding on the final score to give the Pats 55.

Guess I was wrong on the Steelers covering and certainly wrong about KC laying the most points on someone.

Great win heading into the bye week. 7-2 and sitting nice atop the AFC East, and in the early #2 playoff seed. We can’t do much about the IR guys, but getting Talib and Vereen back will certainly help this team continue to win.

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