Re: Pats Face Physical Challenges On Road to SB
posted at 1/9/2011 11:10 AM EST
In Response to Pats Face Physical Challenges On Road to SB
[QUOTE] With the Jets beating the Colts, the Patriots will have to beat both them, and, likely, the Baltimore Ravens, in order to punch their tickets to Dallas. Both teams are tough, physical teams, who can run the ball well. That's bad news for the Patriots, a team with a very mediocre, depleted DL. Make no mistake...the Pats must shut down the running games of both these teams, if they are to win
. Mike Wright will be missed. But, Vince Wilfolk has been outstanding all season, and, particularly, of late. Free agent find Eric Moore has been a revelation since the Pats hired him off the street. But, Gerard Warren's play has been a concern. Brandon Deaderick is back to add depth, as is Myron Pryor. The return of previously suspended ILB, Brandon Spikes, should also help sturdy the middle of the Pats' DL. Look for both Warren and Moore to be tested, time and again, by the Jets. Success on the ground will lead to success through the air, via play action passes.
Posted by TexasPat3[/QUOTE]
The Jets ran the ball for 169 yards against the Colts, but the Pats ran also ran the ball for 168 yards against the Colts...so that's an indictment against the Colts, a front 7 built on speed, not strength.
Of course, five weeks ago, the Jets ran the ball for 152 yards against New England's depleted, very mediocre line--without Mike Wright--and lost 45-3.
The fact is that the Jets cannot win this game being one-dimensional. They are not going to go on 10-minute marches against the beef of Wilfork, Warren, Spikes, Mayo & Co. without a consistent, effective threat
through the air. That consistency will have to come from Sanchez, who will be throwing the ball in the elements, not in the climate controlled dome in which he failed to excel last night. Slants and checkdowns won't do it. He will have to establish that he can throw the ball downfield, in the wind and snow, to move the Pats out of the box. He's just not accurate enough to do that.
The only way the Patriots lose this game is if they, uncharacteristically, turn the ball over on multiple occassions--which, by the way, is the only way they have lost any
games this year. Hold on to the ball, execute in the red zone, and they win this game handily.
Before the December game with the Jets, all the national pundits were carrying on about how the Jets are more talented at almost every position except QB. They still haven't learned that that doesn't mean squat; if talent alone won Lombardis, the Chargers would have a handful. Winning big games requires leadership, execution and balance...and the Pats are head-and-shoulders above the Jets on all accounts.