Monday, January 16, 2006

Was Denver the better team?

I'm left with a few thoughts on Saturday's game.

1) The Pats coughed up the ball 5 times. Anytime you do that, no matter where you are (at home or away) you are going to lose the game.

2) Although Denver was the better team that day, I believe the Pats are a better team. They were moving the ball well and their defense had stopped Denver cold. 286 total yards will not win you a game, normally. At the end of the day, the Pats defense should hold their heads up. Despite all the predictions, they didn't lose the game. No, Denver was better because they played playoff football. Very few mistakes. They protected the ball (just one turnover) and they took advantage of every mistake the Pats made.

3) The play of the game was Bailey's interception, of course. It was a 14 point difference in the game (or at least a 10 point difference, if the Pats had failed to punch it in and had only scored a field goal). That's a big difference in a close fought (till near the end) game.

Of course, Ben Watson running 95 yards to make the tackle on the 1 yard line was the play of the game for the Patriots, too. He never gave up and he came to play that day.

4) Brady played horribly. There's no other way to put it. The ball was sailing away on him and he throwing into some very tight coverage (last interception?)

5) I didn't understand why the Pats didn't blitz more often. Not on every play, of course, but just sometimes. The one time they did, the stomped on Jake. Why not do it every once in a while?

6) The officiating was horrible. I don't think the Pats lost because of the officials, although that excruciatingly bad interference call did change the momentum as well as the crowd noise in the game. Then there was the flinch on the field goal kick (4 false starts by the Pats, and none by Denver). There were several blatant face mask/pass interference calls not made. And that chop blocking on the line was terrifying to watch after the injury riddled season the Pats had. But, in the end, the Pats lost because they made too many mistakes in a playoff game. They were only down by 7 points at the half, and they could have played better.

Oh, and I was wrong about the Pats being able to win this game with their offense.

Look for previous posts on the .


Sally said...

I am not use to seeing the Pats play sloppy football like the way they played Saturday night.

The Pats will have more tools next year...

Mike said...

I agree, it was tough to watch their most reliable players throw it all away (literally!). It just wasn't like them.

As for next year... It's going to be harder to bring it together than you might think.

Take a look at their wide receivers: Branch, Givens, Johnson, Brown, Dwight, Davis, Childress, and McGrew (I know, who's Childress and McGrew, right?). Of these, only Branch and Johnson are currently signed for next year!

We'll have to wait and see what they're going to do next.