Tag Archives: patriots

Brady’s Heir Apparent? Patriots Pick QB Jimmy Garoppolo In 2nd Round (VIDEO)

New England welcomes the record-breaking Eastern Illinois QB who shares the same agent as Tom Brady



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With the 62nd pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, Bill Belichick stocked for the future rather than selecting an immediate impact player. The early analysis on Jimmy G praises his quick release, fundamental footwork and athleticism. With TB12 going on 37 and backup Ryan Mallett’s contract expiring after the season, the future isn’t too clear. Mallett hasn’t shown much growth under TB12′s guidance and this selection can be viewed as an insurance policy.

Is it sexy? No; however, he did throw for 5,050 yards, 53 TD and 9 INT in 2013. Garoppolo was also the Offensive MVP of the East-West Shrine (NCAA all-star) game. It should be noted that 6′ 5″ TE C.J. Fiedorowicz, who worked out for the Pats, was selected three picks later. Belichick was quoted later in the night, “Given the situation we have at QB, I think we had to address the position – better to be early than late”. Yes, he could provide value down the road but NE acquired multiple players to win in 2014, not 2018.

The Patriots then traded their 3rd round pick (93rd) to the Jaguars for an early 4th rounder (105th pick) and another 6th round selection. New England now has three 4th round and three 6th round picks tomorrow. You can count on Bill and company adding some skill players to surround Brady Saturday. In the meantime, check out some highlight videos for Jimmy below:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBoj4bQCaQs&w=460&h=315]

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An In-Depth Look At The 2014 Patriots Schedule

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For the second year in a row, the New England Patriots have a Week 10 bye. Bill Belichick and crew had a Week 9 bye in 2012 – exactly half way through the season. While the position of the break may be advantageous, their out-of-division schedule is quite the opposite.

Tom Brady will lead the Pats against the AFC West and NFC North, two of the more competitive divisions as-of-late. The tough stretch comes right before (and after) the bye, as the Bears and Broncos travel to Gillette 10/26 and 11/02 respectively. After the break, New England travels to Indianapolis for Sunday Night Football, hosts the Lions and then ship to Green Bay for a 4:25 game in the Tundra and another Sunday Night Football game in San Diego.

The Patriots wrap up the season with three 1:00 division games ending with the Bills in the season finale. Other highlights include a Thursday Night game at home against the Jets, Monday Night Football at Kansas City and Sunday Night Football the week after against the Bengals. New England have six primetime slots, seven including their 4:25 matchup at home against the Broncos. It will be definitely be an uphill battle this year but with a revamped defense, anticipation is high for the 2014 Patriots.

Celtics Tweets of Interest: Boston Stronger Than Ever

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The Celtics wrap up their expected, yet disappointing 2013-’14 campaign tonight. They have a 25-56 record and currently hold the fifth worst record in the league.

Concurrently, yesterday marked the one-year anniversary of the bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. The Celtics will certainly pay tribute to the victims, the first responders, and the people of Boston. Last year the citizens of Boston grieved for the deaths of Krystle Campbell, Sean Collier, Lingzi Lu, and Martin Richard. This year Boston is running in their honor and all of the others who suffered injuries because we are resilient and we are prideful. An attack on Boston only brought its people together. On Marathon Monday, we will cheer louder than ever for all of the runners in the beloved 26.2 mile race. Today Boston continues to recover after a year, yet we remain strong and defiant to the acts of terrorism. We will never give in to hatred because like Boston.com’s Chad Finn said, Boston is a family. Like their fans, the Celtics hope they can pick themselves up because in April 2015, the fans want to be able to see the Celtics fight for a playoff berth. Here are the tweets commemorating the city of Boston:

The city of Boston will never forget the tragic day of April 15th, 2013. The Celtics sent this tweet on Tuesday uniting the fans of Boston. Boston is known for their traditions, which include their sports teams and the deep-rooted passion from the fans of the Bruins, Celtics, Patriots, Red Sox, and Revolution. The Celtics recognized the unity between all of the teams with this message.

Celtics captain Rajon Rondo changed his Twitter avatar to the Boston Marathon ribbon. He shared the slogan that galvanized the city of Boston.

Patriots Pulse: Aqib Talib Signs With The Broncos

Just like last year, the Patriots top free agent signed with the teams’ now biggest rival, the Denver Broncos. Late Tuesday night it was reported that star Cornerback Aqib Talib was signing a 6 year deal with Denver worth $57 Million.

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Talib is just the latest player the Patriots have let walk and go to a rival. Of course last year the big story was Wes Welker signing with the Broncos after the Patriots wouldn’t pay him nearly what he wanted.

Talib played a huge role for the Patriots in the 2013 season especially with the injuries they faced all year on defense. If it wasn’t for Talib, the Patriots may not have won as many games as they did last year. In the 13 games he played in for the Patriots, Talib had 4 interceptions, and made quarterbacks think twice before targeting a receiver that Talib was covering.

If the season were to start today, the Patriots top Corner would be Logan Ryan, and despite a decent season from him this year it hard to tell what he’ll do in his second year in the league. Ryan also had it easier because Talib did such a good job on his coverage’s, Quarterbacks were able to target receivers covered by Logan Ryan more because he was the easier target to try and beat.

There’s still plenty of time for the Patriots to pick up a decent Cornerback before the season starts, but nothing they have done in years past would indicate that they are willing to spend money on a good free agent. The best Corner out there is Darrelle Revis, but he still belongs to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the price to trade for him would be pretty high.

One concern the Patriots may have had about Talib was his ability to stay healthy. He missed three games this season, and left the AFC Championship game early for the second year in a row after getting injured. Although Talib may not have been the difference maker against the Broncos, he could have at least kept the conference championship game closer than what it was.

Talib was acquired from Tampa Bay during the 2012 season and immediately became a force on the Patriots defense. He accepted a one year deal from the club after the 2012 season, and that turned out to be a good move for him, because he wouldn’t have gotten a deal anywhere near as good as he got from the Broncos.

As the Bronco’s continue to improve on both defense and offense, the Patriots will need to make some good, smart moves to stay in the race in the AFC.

Tom Brady Still Better Than Peyton Manning When The Game Matters Most

The dust has settled on another football season, and like most years, it ended for Peyton Manning in the same manner. Despite being the best offensive player during the regular season, Manning let up in the most crucial game where it meant the most. Before the Super Bowl sports pundits discussed for two weeks how this game would be a legacy game for Manning, and Peyton did make a statement about his legacy. That legacy being that he is not a good playoff quarterback.

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The Super Bowl loss made his playoff record sub .500 again, like it had been until he defeated the Patriots in the AFC Championship this year to reach .500 at 11-11. Now standing at 11-12 lifetime in the postseason with just one Super Bowl title, the discussion of Peyton being the greatest quarterback of all time can now be stopped. In three Super Bowls he’s now 1-2, and his first Super Bowl appearance didn’t come until his 8th season in the league.

Tom Brady, despite recent struggles, has the most playoff victories of all time with 18, and has just 8 losses. He hasn’t won a title in 9 seasons now, but he’s led the Patriots to 2 Super Bowls in that span, and only got knocked out of the first round of the playoffs twice. Even if Brady never wins another title, he’ll be remembered as one of the best playoff quarterbacks of all time, which is the opposite of Peyton. The only other quarterback to start 5 Super Bowls was Joe Montana for the 49ers.

If you compare Peyton and Brady, it’s important to also realize who each quarterback had as offensive weapons. With the Colts, Manning always had Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne, and Dallas Clark, all of whom were elite receivers for Manning to throw to. When Brady won his three championships, he had relative unknowns he was passing to. Some of the biggest names Brady had was Troy Brown and Deion Branch. Had Brady had the core that Peyton did during his Colts days, he may have an extra championship or two. Read more

AFC Championship Preview: Patriots @ Broncos

Two HOF quarterbacks will be facing off in the greatest rivalry of the past decade


For the third straight year, the New England Patriots are just one win away from another trip to the Superbowl. Are you surprised? This has been a roller-coaster of a year. Who’s standing in the way this season? Old nemesis Peyton Manning and his record-breaking 55 TDs and 5,477 yards will host the quarterback with the most wins (18) in NFL Playoff history, Tom Brady. Peyton Manning is 10-11 in the postseason.

In the Superbowl era, Belichick & Brady have had more games together (191) as starting QB and head coach then Shula & Marino (184) and Noll & Bradshaw (158). The Patriots have gone 148-43 (.775) since 2001, an incredible accomplishment. Their improbable 12-4 regular season record is a true reflection of the “system” Belichick has put in place for the past dozen years. It’s no secret that rookies and reserves have stepped up in absence of multiple key starters being lost for the season (Wilfork, Mayo, Vollmer, Gronk, Welker, Hernandez). While Brady versus Manning is still the main attraction of Sunday afternoon, there are a bunch of impactful story-lines and keys to victory in this matchup of epic proportions. In the past 62 games, the Patriots have only been outscored by 8 points or more in just 2 games (Steelers 2011 and Ravens AFC Championship 2012). This will be a tight game with a small margin for error on both sides of the ball. Check out my collection of notable areas to keep an eye on during the AFC Championship:

1) Red Zone Efficiency: The Broncos are 1st in the NFL having scored a touchdown in 76.6% of their trips inside the 20-yard line compared to the Patriots’ 57.8% clip. Holding Denver to a few field goals is integral for New England. Manning lead his squad to a NFL record 606 total points for, averaging out to 37.1 PPG. Despite being held to 13 against the Jets and 6 points against the Bengals, the Patriots rounded off the year averaging 28.6 PPG and 35.1 PPG over their past 9 games – Indianapolis included. If the New England defense can make a few plays in their own territory with their backs against the wall, it will bode well for another chance at snagging the Lombardi trophy. Assuming the Broncos receive the opening kick-off, going down a few touchdowns on the road is not a good look.

2) Time Management: Keeping the ball out of Peyton’s hands is inevitable; however, controlling the clock is not. The Patriots have developed a signature style of smash-mouth football over the past few weeks lead by impressive performances from the ever-consistent offensive line and LeGarrette Blount. The Patriots are 3rd in the NFL in 4th quarter time-of-possession at 55.1%, compared to the Broncos’ 50.8%. New England and Denver both score the most at 11.2 points per 4th quarter, which is interesting considering the Pats are 23rd in the NFL in the 2nd quarter scoring an average of 6.5 compared to the Broncos’ 9.7. Time management is crucial but Demaryius Thomas can break one at the blink of an eye. The key is for the defense to put the offense in a position to pound the rock and burn the clock.

3) Special Teams: A wild sequence of events lead to a Colts safety, Ryan Allen injury, Brady PAT holding and Gostkowski’s first career punts. In an analysis put together by Dallas News’
Rick Gosselin, the Patriots rank 1st overall in Special Teams. The stat includes 22 different categories but this is no surprise to the New England faithful. Belichick preaches execution in all three aspects of the game every week. Gostkowski had a career year kicking38/41 FGs and stepped up admirably averaging 41.8 YPP on 5 punts and a long of 53 yards in the Divisional Round. Ryan Allen is back to practice and is expected to play on Sunday. Football is a game of inches and whether it’s a punt pinned inside the 5 or a PAT hold, every play matters. A clean special teams performance will put less pressure on the offense and defense.

Stay tuned on game day for part two of my preview and a final score prediction!

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