Monday, September 23, 2013

Day 176: Ok, Patriots... You're Getting a Wee Bit Better.

Honestly, do you remember the last time you felt so squeamish watching the Patriots? I think maybe the 2008 season when Tom Brady went down with that knee injury in the first game and we had to watch Matt Cassel every week. Although they didn't make the playoffs that year, they still surprisingly finished with an 11-5 record. This year, I'm on the verge of nervous vomiting for four solid quarters every week.

But as nauseous as the 2013 Patriots make you feel with their lack of dependable receivers and shaky running backs, they've still taken advantage of the first three soft weeks and have a 3-0 record to sit atop the east tied with the Dolphins. Tom Brady is starting to get his groove back but there were times in Sunday's win where even he looked a bit wobbly.

Long gone are the days where he can flub a pass, throw in at someone's shoe tops, and have them grab it just before it hits the ground. Brady has been spoiled for nearly his whole career with Pro Bowl caliber wide receivers and big, sure-handed tight ends. That's not the case right now and he has had to work on his relationships with the young newbies, teaching as the season progresses. And this week he was rewarded with some great catches.

The un-drafted Kenbrell Thompkins finally caught a touchdown pass. Make that two. Overall, he caught three passes for 41 yards. Aaron Dobson was targeted the most catching seven passes for 52 yards. The running game heated up too with both Stevan Ridley, Brandon Bolden and LeGarrette Blount combining for 28 rushes and 151 yards. And more importantly, no fumbles.

This was definitely a better all-around performance than the past two weeks by both offense and defense. Only three points allowed... I'll take it. But they also haven't faced any team with some real fire power—just a bunch of rookie or no name QBs. They won't have the luxury of facing insignificant teams for the whole season. If they can't pull their shit together, Peyton is going to eat them for lunch.

Word on the street is that Gronk will be back on the field for the upcoming game against the Falcons. He will be a welcome addition.

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