Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Pats-Ravens Barely Escaping Thoughts

Wow, that game was not good for my sleep. The Patriots were outmuscled, out hit and outplayed for the entire game but they still pulled it out with some amazing execution aided by an obscene amount of luck --- 4th & 1 defensive time out after being stuffed, and then a false start in the same series. Michael Holley in Patriot Reign wrote after the Houston game that the Patriots were determined to use every methodology of winning and they are replicating that pattern again this year. Damn it, I wanted to get to bed after halftime with the Pats up 35-3. Oh well it was a great game to watch.

The Patriots defense was getting gashed, and from the naive perspective of a TV viewer, it did not look like the Ravens' offensive line was going anything too interesting besides turning the Patriots' d-line one way, and creating significant cut back space. I wonder who the OLB was on the defensive right side as that edge was soft the entire game?

Damn 2nd string quarterbacks --- Boller played just as well as Feeley did last week.

Where was the Patriots' pass rush? I don't think Boller got sacked at all, and he was only hit half a dozen times when he was making good plays and good decisions.

Merriweather was sighted playing actual football. The only surviving draftee of a thin Patriots 2007 draft class was on the field in what looked like a big nickel and dime package. He has to make the tackle against Darling on the 1st drive when Samual gambled for the interception, and missed because he knew he had over the top help from Merriweather. Merriweather missed the tackle which turned a nice 15 yard gain into a 50 yard gain. He also has to hold onto the ball when it hits him squarely in the chest with 10 seconds left to play.

Maroney had a good game, I liked how the Pats incorporated him in more blitz protections and check-downs. Until now when he was in the game, it seemed to scream 'RUN' or play-action while Faulk handled the passing downs.

That wind must have been nasty as there is no way Moss does not come down with the ball in normal conditions when he has beat both a Pro Bowl corner and a Pro-Bowl safety by three steps.

Too many damn drops, including Moss in the end zone and Watson in the end zone when the Patriots had to settle for field goals.
  • Great catch by Gaffney, not even that disputable for the review, but the review made sense given the time and importance of the catch.
  • The Patriots receivers have been getting mugged the past couple of games, and it was finally nice to see some defense pass interference, illegal contact and holding calls made. The Pats are optimized to play in the 'rule empahsized' league of minimal contact, give them a season to beef up and beat up receivers.

    Wow, even with the Raven's up by three, having the ball and needing a first down with 4 minutes left, I was still confident as a fan that the Patriots could win. I am spoiled.
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