April 24, 2014

Worry Wart – Game Ten vs. Jets

by Chris Warner, Patriots Daily Staff

the-sopranosAfter a Colts game with an outcome only slightly less bewildering than The Sopranos, New England looks ahead to its second round of division contests. They must win Sunday to gain more distance from the 4-5 Jets.

The Jerseyites come to town as a decidedly different bunch from the ones who humiliated the Pats during the second game of the season. Put in simple terms, New England now has Wes Welker; New York now misses defensive tackle/brick wall Kris Jenkins.

While that’s a comfort, we still have plenty of worries…

All Quiet On The Lessened Front: Not a lot of talk coming out of New York these days. Could be due to the Jets’ 1-5 stall after a 3-0 start. Could be because they’re actually focusing on winning the game on the field and not in the media. If that proves true, it scares me. They called Game Two their Super Bowl (according to Jenkins); what the heck is Game Ten supposed to be?

Hocus Focus: Can New England recover from last week’s mind-numbing meltdown? Will New York have some trickery up its sleeve to combat their recent offensive doldrums? Probably a yes on both counts. While the Pats will work on getting back to basics, watch out for the Jets pulling out all the tricks in an attempt to get back to .500.

Pressure Drop: The tune is upbeat (whether you like the Clash’s version or Toots and the Maytals’), yet it describes the faults of New England’s pass rush. Can Tully Banta-Cain come back from last week’s injury (he didn’t practice as of Thursday)? Can anyone rush the QB in a one-on-one blocking situation?

I’ll ask this question again: what the heck happened to linebacker Adalius Thomas? Didn’t he used to rush the passer?

In Like A Line, Out Like A Lamb: Defensive lineman Vince Wilfork got double-teamed repeatedly against the Colts, which – as a man only slightly smaller than a phone booth –  is part of his job description. When that happens, his teammates need to win individual battles, especially if Ty Warren and Jarvis Green have to sit again. Jets fans would enjoy nothing more than watching their team run the football.

Well, boobs. They might enjoy watching boobs a little more.

(What, I’m supposed to let that flashing-in-the-Meadowlands thing go? It’s gold!)

Speaking of boobs running the ball…

The Lore Of Laurence: This topic has caused a rift that would make East Africa jealous. Suffice to say that Laurence Maroney, the number-one draft pick now in his fourth year, has yet to produce at a level of consistency where blah blah blah – I quit. I’m done.

LoMo, have a great game this week. Or don’t. I don’t even care any more.

Email Chris Warner at [email protected]

Comments

  1. Chris,

    Come on man, are you still going on about last week’s fourth down conversion? I don’t think I’ve made this comment yet, but I loved that decision. Yes, it didn’t work out, yes we gave manning a short field to work with, and yes, we lost the game. But, you seriously think it would be better to take the ball out of your best playmaker (Brady) and give it to the defense who had allowed two drives for touchdowns lasting less than 2 minutes in the game?

    Personally, I applaud a decision that took actual guts to make even knowing if it failed he’d get skewered by fans and media blowhards alike. Quite frankly, the colts game was really pretty meaningless in relation to the playoffs this year anyway.

    Colts are undefeated, will lose at most two games from now till playoffs (thats true whether we beat them or not), one of them being week 17 considering they will have the conference wrapped up by then. We’d already lost two, and stand a decent chance at losing at least one more (Saints) by the end of the year. So even if we’d won, they end at 14-2 we end at 13-3, we still have to go to their house for the AFC championship.

    So assuming we only lose one more out of division, we end at 12-4, division lead and a likely 3rd seed considering Cinci has won their 4 hardest games of the year already and may lose against the vikings.

    Basically what I’m saying is appreciate having a coach with some sack, otherwise we could end up with one who punts in opponents territory with 2 minutes left and down by 4.

    • I wouldn’t be booking the tickets to Indy for a rematch quite yet – There’s a strong possibility that the Colts will have to play either San Diego or Pittsburgh in their first playoff game, and over the past few years they’ve under performed in the playoffs at home.

      Freeney, Mathis, Clark, Wayne – they are one injury from imploding (history has shown us that Freeney is the difference on D), and that’s without considering, of course, the unthinkable for Colts fans: “Starting at QB….Jim Sorgi”

    • Chris Warner says:

      Dru, If by “still going on” you mean I used the description “bewildering,” then I guess the answer is yes. I’m not talking about the decision: I’m talking about the confusion I felt watching a series of unusual plays unfold in a matter of seconds, from going for it (which I have little problem with) to getting the first down to not getting the first down to giving up the losing TD.
      Much like the ending to the Sopranos, I watched it and wasn’t quite sure what I’d watched, then spent the next few days going over it in my mind.
      When I used the term “mind-numbing meltdown,” I’m describing the feeling in my head watching what I consider a Super Bowl contender giving up a 17-point lead in the fourth quarter. Maybe I’m weird, but I have a hard time ignoring that.
      Thanks for writing in.

      • “When I used the term “mind-numbing meltdown,” I’m describing the feeling in my head watching what I consider a Super Bowl contender giving up a 17-point lead in the fourth quarter”

        Fair enough, I just got so used to writers (including on here) referring to the decision as mind-numbing, stupid, etc I guess I just figured thats what you were saying as well. I agree, after watching that I couldn’t sleep, kept thinking about why, if we were going for it, didn’t we throw a mid-to-deep pass to moss off play action. You know the safety would have bit, and moss can outjump any of their d-backs. It stings, but I believe we’re going to see them again, and we’re going to go to the superbowl again.

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