And now a quick reset on all things Patriots I do or don’t care about…
- DON’T CARE if Tom Brady wins the NFL MVP this year.
- DON’T CARE if any Patriots make it to the Pro Bowl.
- DO CARE that injuries are starting to mount… Wilhite, Wright, Pryor have all missed significant time. Spikes and…
The Hoodie is now the Assassin.
It’s too bad the media is fixating on the “Look! A big guy!” aspect of Dan Connolly’s return, because there’s a lot more to like about it from a pure football standpoint. It’s actually a very good return from a technical standpoint, one that a lot of true return guys could learn from:
0:03—Connolly calls Rob Gronkowski off the ball. Gronkowski sets up to the side to let Connolly field the ball cleanly.
0:04—Connolly fields the ball and immediately protects it with two hands in anticipation of contact with the coverage team. Gronkowski confirms Connolly’s got the ball then turns downfield.
0:05—Connolly gives the blockers time to engage then follows behind them (rather than juking like a maniac looking for an opening that hasn’t yet developed). This also lets him concentrate on protecting the ball and keeps him moving downfield.
0:07—Connolly clears the scrum and finds the opening. As he does, he gets up on the balls of his feet (giving him a surprising burst of speed for his size) and transfers the ball to his outside arm.
0:10—As he turns the corner, Connolly is already looking for his blockers. He knows he’s not going to win a footrace, so the question is how best to set things up for additional yards.
0:12—Charlie Peprah takes a swing at Connolly and misses. You can’t see it from this angle (though you can in the replay at 0:55), but Connolly holds him off with a textbook stiff-arm and simply muscles past as Sergio Brown comes in to help.
0:14—Connolly starts looking for the cut back under Mason Crosby and Atari Bigby. Again, he knows he’s not going to outrun them so he’s got to wait for some help.
0:15—The one ugly part of the return: Sammy Morris gives Connolly his opening with a blatant block in the Crosby’s back, causing Crosby to go down like he was shot. I don’t know how the zebra missed it; for all I know, he was thinking “A punter wouldn’t stop him anyhow. No harm, no foul.”
0:16—The Packers finally catch up to Connolly from behind and bring him down just shy of the end zone. But it takes two of them, after Bigby trips him up.
Collinsworth’s “Ohyougottabekidding…” at 0:09 was entirely appropriate. It’s just a shame that nobody in the press ever got beyond that. This was not a fluke play; this was something that Connolly was clearly very well prepared for. Why am I not surprised that we’d see that in a Patriot?
What’s so perfect about this play is a) the coaching, as you point out, was so good, and b) Big Dan’s stiff arm is the kind of play OLinemen dream about. He pasted that dude.
Hopefully the first of 3 hats this season.
I actually never buy this stuff. I just like that the players get them after big games and all. I have 1 Pats’ T shirt, 1 long-sleeve, 1 John Hannah replica jersey, and 1 baseball cap I got in like 1994.
I’ve also owned only 2 Red Sox hats in my whole life.
I may have posted this before, but I love that there’s evidence of at least 1 Patriots fan before Tom Brady.
Our neighbors at the time have been season ticket holders for the entire life of the Boston/New England Patriots. They are warriors. They went to every home game during the TWO 1-15 campaigns as well as the 2-14, the 3-13, the debacle against the Bears in Super Bowl XX. Mrs. K only missed Tommy’s 3rd Super Bowl win because she HAD CANCER. I’m pretty sure they gave me this shirt.
I wish I still had it—I’d put it on the dogs on game day. And check out the sweet pants and shoes. I believe they’re from the House of Bozo.
Tom Brady and the guys from Mastodon really took it to the Dolphins today.
I am this many: XXXIII
Let’s Go Pats!!!
After they destroy the Jets’ today, I hope they play ‘Blood and Thunder.’
TFB is having his worst half since the Cleveland game. Jets are playing very well. I hate them.
6 miles, 8:30/mile minute pace makes the pain largely go away.
The Jets were better in all phases and stomped the Pats good and hard. I will root for the Steelers and the Pack to meet in the Super Bowl and for a great game in 3 weeks.
April and the draft and OTAs can’t come quick enough, and if the owners lock out the players and there’s no NFL in 2011 I will be right miffed I tell you.
First Patriots’ touchdown, first review! Awesome.
So my teaching schedule gets completely in the way of MNF all season. This is below average.
But Welkah dropping a 99.5 yard reception on the Fish? Above average. And I actually saw it live when I stopped for dinner. Now, to the DVR.
For this week at least, I love my team.
Now, let’s saddle up for Marmalard and the rest of the hateable but so talented Chargers.
After the debacle in Buffalo (and congrats to Old Skool Deadspinners/KSK Kommenters 289 and Upstate Underdog), I drowned my sorrows in a killer trail run.
Almost finished the whole 10 mile loop, but started to run out of gas at the 8 mile mark, so I cut through a few short cuts and finished up a little short of the full 10. Next time.
Tom Brady got a little unlucky today and he played a lot crummy at key points despite putting up 35.85 points for me in FF. The secondary was missing PatChung! who was key, but ye gods, that’s a bad defense that has to get better and soon.
If I’m Willie McGinnest, Tedy Bruschi, Ted Johnson, Mike Vrable, Ty Law, and Rodney Harrison, I’m thinking that the Pats’ D struggles since they all left or retired means their chances for Canton keep going up. Tommy’s in, Bill’s in, Richard Seymour is in, Bob Kraft is in, Matt Light might get in, Logan Mankins might too, but those D players should get long looks as their names start coming up.
At least the Jets lost.