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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Superbowl Preview - New England Patriots

Posted Monday Jan 21:
I was going to roll out a paragraph or two about Tom Brady’s demeanor, in my piece on the New England Patriots. Looks like we might have an explanation. You know I go to TMZ for my sports news. And ESPN reports the entertainment gossip sight has a video of Tom Brady in a walking cast on Monday.

Posted Monday Jan 22:
So I posted about the walking boot TMZ caught Brady in yesterday. Now they have a picture of him in cowboy boots .All of my cowboy friends (count: 00) have told me that if he can hit a club in those boots, he ain't hurt that bad.

The patriots are masters of distraction. Actually they are masters at dealing with it. Make no mistake Randy Moss is part of that Patriot philosophy. The legal issues coinciding with his sub-par performance in the last two weeks are not actually related. Those games weren’t just against the Jaguars and Chargers. They were against Antonio Cromartie and Resheen Mathis; 6’2’’, 203 and 6’1’’, 200, respectively, versus Moss’s 6’4’’, 210. In the NY Giants he will match up against Aaron Ross 6’0 193 and Cory Webster 6’0’’ 203. Obviously Webster is close to Mathis but that inch is a big deal, and Webster is not nearly the athlete that Mathis is. Randy Moss has waited his whole career for this and he will deliver.

The Patriots defense will not want to here this. Unfortunately, the reality is, a few of these guys are making their last run at a championship. they probably know they need to get it done now, not to say their age is going to hurt them in this game , I don’t think it will. Belichick always has a scheme put together to make them very effective against the strengths of the other team.

It is interesting to note though that against the teams they have faced twice this year the Patriots have not had the results I expected. I figured with a mastermind like Belichick familiarity would breed greater success, however it was a mixed bag. Against the Jets the margin of victory dropped by two touchdowns in the second meeting, against Miami they were even, winning by twenty-one points each time. Against the Bills they saw a 15 point increase in the second game. No real definitive proof to be gained from that. I also think that while Coughlin doesn’t get the same press as Belichick (some of which I am sure Coughlin is glad to miss) I have some confidence in the him, knowing that he get’s the same two weeks as Belichick, in order to prepare.

One of the interesting angles to the meeting of the minds as far as the coaches go is the fact that Belichick and Coughlin are both old school Parcells disciples. Nothing really important but if you needed one more storyline to think about there you are.

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