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  1. Is the Patriots defense for real?

    Well said. They've obviously not this good. They've also given up 20 points in 5 games, so they can afford to be much worse and still "for real". What makes this year's Pats defense interesting, is that they have a lot of experience. The "newest" guy in the team's back 7.... is Stephon GIlmore who is 29. Today's NFL teams are ruthless about trying to get younger and faster, and build around a few key faces, and simplify things to play faster. If this Pats defense goes far, and does so partially on account of being able to change things up game-to-game (particularly in the secondary), I think there's a team building philosophy debate to be had there.
  2. Notable Stats and Observations

    For sure. They're far more likely to be merely good, than historic. But what makes the Pats defense interesting isn't just the bottom line, it's how they're going about it. 2-4-5 hybrid defense with 2-gap principles, built from the secondary forward instead of the other way around, full of veterans. I think what you're seeing is the counter to the spread offense concepts and RPO. Reading between the lines, NFL defenses have gotten simpler and more predictable in the name of playing faster. And they've gotten younger/more reliant on UDFAs and rookie scale guys because of moneyball-style roster management. Both of these trends appear to have made the NFL's defenses vulnerable to tricky spread concepts, which is why offenses were so far ahead of defenses last season. I think the dominant stretch the Pats defense has been on is instructive on how to counter that.
  3. Week 3 takeaways?

    If any of you football nerds haven't watched the Patriots defense yet, you have to. They're ~18 players deep with guys who fill roles in a hybrid 3-4 defense. The communication level is insanely high, they all tackle well, and most of them punch above their weight at the point of attack. The trend around the league in recent years has been to get simpler to play faster, and get younger. Meanwhile the Pats have Devin McCourty in his 10th season on the team. Chung in his 10th. Hightower in his 8th. Duron Harmon in his 7th. Jason McCourty is literally Devin’s twin. Jamie Collins has been in the system in the past... there's a huge amount of system experience and it's manifesting itself as a level of team chemistry you don't really see nowadays.
  4. Marcus Mariota FACTS

    Alex Smith is a great comparison. I think people get too wrapped up in Mariota's draft position, and expect him to have some kind of upside of being a dynamic player. With a few years of tape, it's pretty obvious he lacks the instinct and talent to be that guy. But by all accounts he's a great kid. He can deliver the ball accurately if he knows where he's going with it. And he's done reasonably well to avoid turnovers in his career. That's a sound foundation. Improve his pocket presence and decisiveness getting the ball out, and I think he could have a career like Smith. Here's the fun question. Who outlasts the other as a starting QB, Marcus Mariota or Jameis Winston?
  5. Multiple Dolphins Players Request Trades After Loss

    I don't think tanking is frequent enough or effective enough to justify it. A lot of "tanking" teams are just not good, and the few teams that REALLY tank (trade away all the vets and totally disregard culture) don't succeed at a rate that encourages the process.
  6. He's out of the hospital. Andrews is a STUD. His reputation hasn't caught up to his play yet, which is a shame. Hope he avoids anything serious and can live a normal life.
  7. But Ramsey wrote a check he could cash by criticizing Josh Allen. They played each other during the season. Meanwhile, Mayfield will never play a snap against Daniel Jones in his career. Trash talk is trash talk, because football is a competitive sport. When you go and talk trash about someone you can't compete against, who you'll never have to answer to, who'll never get a chance to compete against you.... it's not trash talk anymore. It's just being a ****.
  8. Not just that, another quarterback. I'm all for Richard Sherman talking trash about Tom Brady, Jalen Ramsey talking trash about Josh Allen, etc. Because they're actually competitors. But Baker Mayfield and Daniel Jones don't compete with one another at any level. Mayfield has no way to put his money where his mouth is, and Jones has no way to get back at him. It's bush league. Hell, the Giants don't even play the Browns. Not only is he talking sh*t about a guy he never has to answer to, he's talking sh*t about a guy whose TEAM he never has to answer to.
  9. He's a beloved player and this is a controversial opinion but I never felt like Brian Dawkins' play matched his reputation. More reliable than gamechanging. Not first ballot HOF to me.
  10. 25 and Younger: Who ya got?

    The Browns group covers such key positions. Potential franchise QB, all-world pass rushing DE, potential shutdown corner. Has to be them.
  11. Training Camp Buzz

    If you break up the 100-200-300 part as 5-10-15, 20 times, it's much more attainable. To actually contribute to the discussion at hand - CB Jonathan Jones has had a good camp so far for NE. The rookies haven't made much noise.
  12. Same on the PI rule. That's the big issue for me. It's going to be a disaster and that's the biggest reason I'd go 8 or 9. But the seasonal comfort of having the television on all day and football games to geek over is just too good. Hell, I'm pretty certain I get more done at home during football season, because it gives an incentive to clean/cook/wash/work etc. in the living room
  13. Their situation at TE and WR is very tenuous. Julian Edelman, a rookie WR, and.......? I think putting them at #4 in spite of a question mark that size, is a ringing endorsement of the rest of the team personally.
  14. (Edit: beyond the fact that this amputation was more severe)The Griffin kid was born that way. He's spent his whole life developing physically around it. A pro sustaining an equivalent handicap as an adult wouldn't stand a chance. This sounds like a nightmare. Poor dude. Hope his recovery goes well enough to live a somewhat normal life.