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Can Patriots challenge with run first offense this year?


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On 5/7/2021 at 10:07 PM, Inigo Montoya said:

Bill Belichick's coaching hallmark has always been game planning to identify an opponents' weakness and adjusting his offensive or defensive scheme week to week to exploit those weaknesses.  As offenses have transitioned to pass first philosophies across the league, defenses have begun to adapt by looking for defenders geared more towards stopping the pass.  LBs who have the mobility to cover in the flat seem to be overtaking the prototypical LBs of years past who were run stuffing thumpers.

 

I think Bill is going against the grain and is returning to smash mouth football and trying to build an offense that will take advantage of defenses built to stop the pass.  He doesn't have an elite QB on his roster and he knows he isn't going to win a shootout without Tom Brady under center.  I think he knows that low scoring games are going to give his team as its currently constituted the best chance to win. He wants to run the ball, chew clock, win time of possession, get turnovers on defense, and win games like they did 20 years ago.  He wants to win games 21-17.

 

The loss of Brady forced him to embrace this run first philosophy.  Last season the Patriots were second in the NFL in percentage of running plays at 51.28%.  That strategy can be successful, four of the top five teams in running percentage made the playoffs last year. 

 

1.  Baltimore  55.04%

2. New England  51.28%

3. Tennessee 50.28%

4. Cleveland 47.48%

5. New Orleans 46.95%

 

Bill always seems to have a great O-Line (one of the reasons Brady is still playing at age 64) and last year was no different.  According to PFF the Pats had the 4th ranked O-Line last year and Bill has tried to bolster the O-line even more heading into this season.  I linked below to a recent article about the Pats' 2021 O-line and the PFF O-line rankings from last year.  They will have Wynn and Andrews back for 2021 and they traded for Trent Brown who is a monster during the off season.  As it stands now, the starting O-line in New England is projected to be;

 

LT: Isaiah Wynn
LG: Michael Onwenu
Center:  David Andrews
RG: Shaq Mason
RT: Trent Brown

 

https://boston.cbslocal.com/2021/03/19/andrews-brown-onwenu-wynn-patriots-offensive-line-depth-karras-mason-nfl-free-agency-cam-newton-belichick/

https://www.pff.com/news/nfl-final-2020-offensive-line-rankings

 

The O-Line will also be augmented by frequent two TE sets that put more beef on the line and enable the running game.  I expect the majority of their offensive snaps come out of two TE sets this season with their free agent signings of Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith.

 

The Pats used their 4th round pick to add RB Rhamondre Stevenson that Mike Reiss at ESPN described as "A big, physical back whose style sparks thoughts of LeGarrette Blount, the 5-foot-11, 227-pound Stevenson is an intimidating runner."   Stevenson will be joining James White their fantastic receiving back and Damien Harris who had an injury plagued but solid season, ending the season ranked 11th among RBs with an average of 69 yards a game.  There is talk that Stevenson will allow the Pats to move on from Sony Michel who has had trouble staying healthy.  They also have a young back in J.J. Taylor who was injured most of last season who will be back and add depth.  On the whole, it's not a very scary stable of RBs.   I think there is a widely held expectation that the Pats will add a veteran RB sometime this off season as teams cut RBs due to cap and roster concerns.  I was surprised Kerryon Johnson didn't end up in New England.  I'd be curious to know if they made a run at him.

 

Cam is a obviously a solid running QB and adds a real element to their run game.  Even if Cam gives way to Mac Jones at some point in the season, Jones is likely going to be given game plans like Bill gave the young Tom Brady, more of a game control passing strategy, making short high percentage passes just often enough to keep defenses honest and stop them from stacking the box.  It sounds like that type of offense would play to Jones' strength, whose two main attributes are said to be his accuracy and his ability to read a defense at the line of scrimmage and find the weak spot and put the ball there.

 

The two big questions are how successful can this run first strategy be across a 17 game season in today's NFL for New England?  Can they win enough games this way to challenge for the AFCE title and make a deep playoff run?  The other question as Bills' fans is, how will our defense stack up against this run first philosophy?   Run defense has been a weakness at times for McDermott and Frazier's defenses.  Bill knows the best way to beat QBs like Mahomes and Allen is to keep them sitting on the bench.  It will be interesting to see how Belichick's run first gambit plays out this year.

 

 

 

Wow that was long. Speaking as a Pats fan I expect Newton be the starter for the first 4 weeks and go probably 1-3. They then will go with Mac Jones and hopefully unleash a real passing offense.

 

Mind you this all could change if they end up getting Julio Jones. Who could make the Pats a .500 Team in the first 4 games if not 3-1.  (Yes I believe he is that special of a talent)

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We know no matter what the patriots will be tough belichick has been studying Allen and the offense all off season and will have an exact plan to slow down Allen. Though me personally I don't think running against Allen and the bills is the way to beat them. And I don't see belichick going that route. I see getting back to the Brady style quick slant routes that give up the 4-7 yards at a time that deflates the D until they give up the home run ball, with a decent accurate QB and stud TEs this is achievable. And play Allen tough knowing no matter what he's going to do something special and make plays but give Allen terrible feild position and stop him a few times and you beat the bills. I think this is the route belichick takes.

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  • 3 months later...

For those homers in the NFL community predicting the Patriots to make the playoffs or even win the division. 

 

Since the merger 13 rookie QBs have started a playoff game. 10 have led teams to playoffs, and most of them were fairly pedestrian teams. 

 

The merger was 51 years ago. 13 dudes total.

 

By my rough math, thats a .07 % chance for a team to make the playoffs w a rookie QB.

 

IMO most of the rookie QBs who were threats were running type QBs. 

Edited by RichRiderBills
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15 minutes ago, RichRiderBills said:

 

By my rough math, thats a .07 % chance for a team to make the playoffs w a rookie QB.

 

IMO most of the rookie QBs who were threats were running type QBs. 

 

Your math is wrong.  Like, really wrong.  I only took first year stats at uni and can tell you are confusing something BAD.

 

There's basically an average of a rookie QB leading a team to the playoffs every 5 years.  How many rookie day one starters are there in a typical 5 year span?  There would have to be over 1000 to be able to get down to less than 0.1%.  You have to compare Jones to other day one starters in their rookie years, not just against every QB to ever be in the league or whatever it is you did.

 

You seem to just be taking the 10 playoff rookies, and simply dividing it by some huge number like 51 years times the number of teams in the league each year, rather than comparing apples to apples and seeing how many specific instances there were of a team having a rookie as a day one starter.

Edited by 1ManRaid
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53 minutes ago, 1ManRaid said:

 

Your math is wrong.  Like, really wrong.  I only took first year stats at uni and can tell you are confusing something BAD.

 

There's basically an average of a rookie QB leading a team to the playoffs every 5 years.  How many rookie day one starters are there in a typical 5 year span?  There would have to be over 1000 to be able to get down to less than 0.1%.  You have to compare Jones to other day one starters in their rookie years, not just against every QB to ever be in the league or whatever it is you did.

 

You seem to just be taking the 10 playoff rookies, and simply dividing it by some huge number like 51 years times the number of teams in the league each year, rather than comparing apples to apples and seeing how many specific instances there were of a team having a rookie as a day one starter.

 

https://www.google.com/amp/s/jetswire.usatoday.com/lists/rookie-quarterbacks-nfl-playoff-history-zach-wilson-new-york-jets/amp/

 

Nope, the math is not wrong, but there are flaws in it, I’d agree there.

 

If you wanted to crunch the numbers of how many teams that specifically started rookies and how many of those teams made the playoffs by virtue of the rookie , you’d perhaps get a different # that would still be significantly low and insignificant.

 

Let’s also add several of the 13 listed did not start the season and were fill ins due to injury or poor performance. 

 

Your notion it occurs every 5 years is not at all accurate. Nearly half occurred in the last 10 years, and most of these guys were big running threats.

 

The notion it is statistically (extremely)improbable a rookie QB can lead a team to the playoffs still is irrevocably accurate. 

 

Keep in mind, both Luck and Dalton were much better runners than Jones, you are in a zone of even more unlikely. 

 

I’ll also add that the kind of defenses some of these teams that did it had llike Rothlisberger and Flacco are essentially impossible to construct these days.

 

 

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1 hour ago, RichRiderBills said:

 

https://www.google.com/amp/s/jetswire.usatoday.com/lists/rookie-quarterbacks-nfl-playoff-history-zach-wilson-new-york-jets/amp/

 

Nope, the math is not wrong, but there are flaws in it, I’d agree there.

 

If you wanted to crunch the numbers of how many teams that specifically started rookies and how many of those teams made the playoffs by virtue of the rookie , you’d perhaps get a different # that would still be significantly low and insignificant.

 

Let’s also add several of the 13 listed did not start the season and were fill ins due to injury or poor performance. 

 

Your notion it occurs every 5 years is not at all accurate. Nearly half occurred in the last 10 years, and most of these guys were big running threats.

 

The notion it is statistically (extremely)improbable a rookie QB can lead a team to the playoffs still is irrevocably accurate. 

 

Keep in mind, both Luck and Dalton were much better runners than Jones, you are in a zone of even more unlikely. 

 

I’ll also add that the kind of defenses some of these teams that did it had llike Rothlisberger and Flacco are essentially impossible to construct these days.

 

 

 

1.  "Not wrong, but there's flaws in it" is an oxymoron.  You're automatically disqualifying your own premise by admitting your methodology was flawed.  Garbage in, garbage out.

 

2.  You specifically said "thats a .07 % chance for a team to make the playoffs w a rookie QB."  You don't know the meaning of "chance" in the statistical sense.  You're giving them 1 in 1429 odds of just making the playoffs, which is absurd.  Even Houston has a much better "chance" than that of making it.  You're not even talking about winning the Super Bowl, just about being one of the seven teams out of sixteen, and don't even necessarily need to be one of the best seven.

 

3.  Just go ahead and post the math you did to come to the conclusion of 0.07%, this should be interesting.  I'm willing to bet you multiplied random irrelevant variables together to shoehorn apples and oranges together.  Like "out of all the seasons that have ever been played by all QBs, this percentage of them were a rookie QB taking a team to the playoffs".  Which is NOT the same as "this is THIS team's chance to make the playoffs THIS year".  The closest you can do to approximating that is divide your 10 successful rookie QBs by all the specific seasons where a team started a rookie for the season.  Percentage would still be low, but nowhere near 0.07% low.

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On 5/8/2021 at 7:34 AM, CSBill said:

Mr. Inigo Montoya, your theory is solid and they will be better, maybe 9-10 wins if all goes well; but they still have holes--mainly their Defense. I don't think they'll challenge for the Division.

 

   Agree it is a solid and even a valid strategy to compensate for not having the Franchise on the team any longer. And it would even be successful except for Josh Allen.

 

   They can run all they want but they won't keep pace with the Bills passing and equally important kicking game when u go toe to toe countering success on both sides. So I view snagging Bass as a overlooked cog in the machine.

 

   I'd say the Bills have the best qb and best kicker in division.  Hmm alot like early Pat's Brady/Vinatieri early dynasty.

 

   A couple old proverbs.

 

   You don't reinvent the wheel.

 

   To not learn from history is to just repeat same mistakes... but on this one I'm taking the inferred counterpoint.  To learn from history is to duplicate success.

 

   I'd rather be an early BB Brady Vinatieri copycat than a early but still all blowhard Rex Ryan build a bully  ground and pound team.  All coaches find the game doesn't stand still for them, BB  knows it just probably just working out his current contract.  If Kraft felt Bill was hurting the team I'm sure he'd arrange a Bill decides to retire decision for all we know his pat contract could be guaranteed even if he retires.  I don't think coach contracts are detailed much outside maybe term and yearly salary. 

 

   So no I don't believe it will be a success while Bills have Allen Bass and our wr corp.

 

   As for defense if Rousseau develops as edge as Bruce did learning to be supple at his height/strength will work towards a long productive career. Also Bruce was underrated at ability to shed blocks and take down the rb trying the corner.

 

And FYI  I will take Ja17/Bass over the Tb12/Vinatieri combo at the start of their dynasty with Brady not the current been in the league this entire millenia Brady. And current Josh over rookie thru last year's Josh  Because even in just that lil preview in preseason we see Josh is making his reads and has the weapons to choose where the best play is.  

 

 

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Bill also never undervalued the role of quality pass-catching TEs.

 

Invested heavily this offseason in the areas that our defense was weakest. Covering TEs and stopping the run.

 

The signing of Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith should give anyone a good idea of the kind of offense Bill is going to surround Jones with.

 

NE has always had a great offensive line, but much of that was the stellar coaching of Scarnecchia who retired (I think for good this time). 

 

My bias, but I think their line also benefitted from the Brady treatment of blatant holds that went unflagged.

 

Brady ain't there and Mac Jones is not going to get the same fan boy treatment from officials.

 

Interesting read and some insight on what Bill values in his TEs:

https://www.si.com/nfl/patriots/gm-report/belichick-scouting-notes-91-still-relevant

 

 

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On 5/29/2021 at 11:25 AM, Norcalbillsfan said:

We know no matter what the patriots will be tough belichick has been studying Allen and the offense all off season and will have an exact plan to slow down Allen. Though me personally I don't think running against Allen and the bills is the way to beat them. And I don't see belichick going that route. I see getting back to the Brady style quick slant routes that give up the 4-7 yards at a time that deflates the D until they give up the home run ball, with a decent accurate QB and stud TEs this is achievable. And play Allen tough knowing no matter what he's going to do something special and make plays but give Allen terrible feild position and stop him a few times and you beat the bills. I think this is the route belichick takes.

 

    Yea except in past Billyboy depended on rattling the opponents into making enough errors to cash in to seal the deal.

 

  Bills with Allen don't shoot themselves in the foot or when they do they do what  Christian Wade would say  they run the bloody right route on the shot foot.  

 

 

  And if it's toe to toe I'm backing Bass vs who they even have as kicker?

 

 

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22 minutes ago, WideNine said:

Bill also never undervalued the role of quality pass-catching TEs.

 

Invested heavily this offseason in the areas that our defense was weakest. Covering TEs and stopping the run.

 

The signing of Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith should give anyone a good idea of the kind of offense Bill is going to surround Jones with.

 

NE has always had a great offensive line, but much of that was the stellar coaching of Scarnecchia who retired (I think for good this time). 

 

My bias, but I think their line also benefitted from the Brady treatment of blatant holds that went unflagged.

 

Brady ain't there and Mac Jones is not going to get the same fan boy treatment from officials.

 

Interesting read and some insight on what Bill values in his TEs:

https://www.si.com/nfl/patriots/gm-report/belichick-scouting-notes-91-still-relevant

 

 

    

 

    I think the added size we got on Dl now the ability by the basham 6'3" and  Rousseau  6'6".

On a passing route if tes releasing easily could Rousseau stunt into middle gaps to defend against safety dumpoffs to tes?       

   His height and added arm length would make deflecting passes a good ability to work on as well as pass rush moves.  

 

    I don't recall if Bruce tipped alot of balls,  he was just so good to watch for his sacks and pressures anything else was just gravy and blends into his all time sack leader goat. 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, WideNine said:

Bill also never undervalued the role of quality pass-catching TEs.

 

Invested heavily this offseason in the areas that our defense was weakest. Covering TEs and stopping the run.

 

The signing of Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith should give anyone a good idea of the kind of offense Bill is going to surround Jones with.

 

NE has always had a great offensive line, but much of that was the stellar coaching of Scarnecchia who retired (I think for good this time). 

 

My bias, but I think their line also benefitted from the Brady treatment of blatant holds that went unflagged.

 

Brady ain't there and Mac Jones is not going to get the same fan boy treatment from officials.

 

Interesting read and some insight on what Bill values in his TEs:

https://www.si.com/nfl/patriots/gm-report/belichick-scouting-notes-91-still-relevant

 

Is "not killing people" one of the values?

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If you check the Pats boards, they think they're right back to being a SB contender. The only nod to reality that they allot is that Mac "won't be as good as Brady"...but most think he'll be close and it's right back to being top dog.

 

Winning for 20 years straight can be both a blessing & curse, imo.

 

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10 minutes ago, Doc said:

 

Is "not killing people" one of the values?

 

Well.... true.

 

That kind of thuggery and character flaws (that were seriously floating around before that draft) would give most humans not named Bill Belichick pause.

 

 

 

56 minutes ago, AuntieEm said:

    

 

    I think the added size we got on Dl now the ability by the basham 6'3" and  Rousseau  6'6".

On a passing route if tes releasing easily could Rousseau stunt into middle gaps to defend against safety dumpoffs to tes?       

   His height and added arm length would make deflecting passes a good ability to work on as well as pass rush moves.  

 

    I don't recall if Bruce tipped alot of balls,  he was just so good to watch for his sacks and pressures anything else was just gravy and blends into his all time sack leader goat. 

 

 

 

 

I think it was Kelsay back in the day who had a knack for getting his hands in Brady's throwing lanes... someone with better memory van correct me.

 

You are right that Groot and others trees on our line will need to make knocking down and tipping short passes a priority.

 

 

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4 hours ago, 1ManRaid said:

 

1.  "Not wrong, but there's flaws in it" is an oxymoron.  You're automatically disqualifying your own premise by admitting your methodology was flawed.  Garbage in, garbage out.

 

2.  You specifically said "thats a .07 % chance for a team to make the playoffs w a rookie QB."  You don't know the meaning of "chance" in the statistical sense.  You're giving them 1 in 1429 odds of just making the playoffs, which is absurd.  Even Houston has a much better "chance" than that of making it.  You're not even talking about winning the Super Bowl, just about being one of the seven teams out of sixteen, and don't even necessarily need to be one of the best seven.

 

3.  Just go ahead and post the math you did to come to the conclusion of 0.07%, this should be interesting.  I'm willing to bet you multiplied random irrelevant variables together to shoehorn apples and oranges together.  Like "out of all the seasons that have ever been played by all QBs, this percentage of them were a rookie QB taking a team to the playoffs".  Which is NOT the same as "this is THIS team's chance to make the playoffs THIS year".  The closest you can do to approximating that is divide your 10 successful rookie QBs by all the specific seasons where a team started a rookie for the season.  Percentage would still be low, but nowhere near 0.07% low.

 

We cannot escape that the odds of a rookie QB leading his team to the playoffs since the merger is infinitesimal. 

 

The odds of a non mobile running QB pulling it off are even worse.

 

I stand by the stat provided. 

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11 minutes ago, RichRiderBills said:

 

We cannot escape that the odds of a rookie QB leading his team to the playoffs since the merger is infinitesimal. 

 

The odds of a non mobile running QB pulling it off are even worse.

 

I stand by the stat provided. 

Ok, great. Then if the odds are 1 in 1,428 that the Pats make the playoffs, surely you would be willing to bet me with better odds than that. I only need 1000:1 odds. 

I bet $10 and if the Pats make the playoffs you owe me $10,000. You OK with that? If the answer is no, then you don't really believe what you are saying here. 

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17 minutes ago, RichRiderBills said:

 

We cannot escape that the odds of a rookie QB leading his team to the playoffs since the merger is infinitesimal. 

 

The odds of a non mobile running QB pulling it off are even worse.

 

I stand by the stat provided. 

Literally 10 rookie quarterbacks have taken their teams to the playoffs in the past 17 years: Andy Dalton, Andrew Luck, Matt Ryan, Ben Roethlisberger, Russell Wilson, Joe Flacco, Mark Sanchez, Lamar Jackson, Dak Prescott, and RG III. I’d abandon this argument ASAP if I were you.

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