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Patriots Talk: Aaron Rodgers or Tom Brady?

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 Patriots Talk: Aaron Rodgers or Tom Brady?

So this debate seemingly has been brought up AGAIN. The New England Patriots starting [Quarterback] Tom Brady has been seemingly impossible to see leaving the NFL anytime soon and even looks to be the First-Team selection for the All-Decade Team of the 2010s like he was in the 2000s. It was always a debate whenever people brought up Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady because so many people said Brady has the rings and Manning has the stats. It would seem the same can be said of Brady vs Rodgers of this current era.

Recently on ESPN, Hall-of-Fame [Cornerback] Deion ‘Primetime’ Sanders, talked with NFL analyst, Dave Dameshek regarding who would be the better QB going into 2017. This soon became a new ‘hot take’ of the week it would seem as other sports news like Undisputed on FS1, got in on the fun. While many argue that Rodgers is the superior of the two ‘now’ because he is both younger and more ‘athletic.’ However, what Brady accomplished last season, Sanders declared it’s Tom Brady ‘Because all he does is win, win, win no matter what, what, what!’ While Patriots fans would say this is a no brainer, we need to understand what they both have accomplished. Looking at last season, it easy to understand why these two are so often put against one another when they both haven’t even played since Week 13 of the 2014 NFL season.

I will agree that Aaron Rodgers in terms of what he has accomplished, while he was at his peak (2011) was just as good, if not better, than Brady was in 2007, but in terms of their actual careers, its not even close. Brady has more Superbowls than Aaron Rodgers ,but that does not mean he is simply a better QB. When looking at their front office and roster, The Patriots are all around incredible at any position with the best head coach in the sport; Bill Belichick and a front office that is controlled by one of the best owners in the NFL in Robert Kraft.

The city of Green Bay, Wisconsin are the actual owners of the Packers so there is no ‘official’ owner outside of the shareholders and their coaching staff isn’t something to shrug at, Mike McCarthy has been the Head Coach of the green Bay Packers since 2006 and has lead the team to 7 Division Titles (2007, 2011-2014, 2016) and won Super Bowl XLV. His current total W-L record is 124–69–1 (.642) which is exceptional for any coach in the NFL. But many feel that McCarthy’s style of offense is stale and relies too heavily on Rodgers utilizing his instincts and strengths to be able to make big plays (which more often than not, he does). On the other hand, the rest of the Packers coaching staff is…well to put into nicer words,  underachieving, especially in the case, the defensive coordinator, Dom Capers. In terms of overall talent, Rodgers has been forced on several occasions, to drag a below average, team to the playoffs year after year since he earned NFL MVP in 2011. Now looking back on the Packers since 2011, this isn’t as untrue as many would think.

Here is a defensive ranking of both teams by year since 2011:

2011: Green Bay Packers – 32nd in total yards allowed (6585). 1st in Turn-Over Ratio (31 INT, which is a team record) 19th in points allowed. (359) vs. New England Patriots – 31st in total yards allowed (6577). 2nd in Turn-Over Ratio (23 INT). 15th in points allowed. (342)

2012: Green Bay Packers – 11th in total yards allowed (5388). 8th in Turn-Over Ratio (18 INT) 11th in points allowed. (336) vs. New England Patriots – 25th in total yards allowed (5972). 5th in Turn-Over Ratio (20 INT). 9th in points allowed. (331)

2013: Green Bay Packers – 25th in total yards allowed (5956). 26th in Turn-Over Ratio (11 INT) 24th in points allowed. (428) vs. New England Patriots – 26th in total yards allowed (5969). 12th in Turn-Over Ratio (17 INT). 10th in points allowed. (338)

2014: Green Bay Packers – 15th in total yards allowed (5542). 7th in Turn-Over Ratio (18 INT) 13th in points allowed. (348) vs. New England Patriots – 13th in total yards allowed (5506). 12th in Turn-Over Ratio (16 INT). 8th in points allowed. (313)

2015: Green Bay Packers – 15th in total yards allowed (5547). 9th in Turn-Over Ratio (17 INT) 12th in points allowed. (323) vs. New England Patriots – 9th in total yards allowed (5430). 20th in Turn-Over Ratio (12 INT). 10th in points allowed. (315)

2016: Green Bay Packers – 22th in total yards allowed (5823). 4th in Turn-Over Ratio (17 INT). 21st in points allowed. (388) vs. New England Patriots – 8th in total yards allowed (5223). 15th in Turn-Over Ratio (13 INT). 1st in points allowed. (250)

 

It’s impossible to win any game when your defense cannot stop the opposing teams’ offense. Both teams showed this again the Atlanta Falcons seemingly unstoppable offense (Difference is, one of these teams actually won against them). Based on these stats alone, it shows that their defensive coordinators (in this case, Matt Patricia and Dom Campers). Just based of the stats, The Patriots seem to have an edge in the yards allowed (except 2013) and Points allowed, but in terms of INT the Packers beat them out (except in 2012 and 2013).

Brady has played with a seemingly better defense but that doesn’t mean that he didn’t need to work as hard to get them to the playoffs. In terms of the actual players, the overall resume speaks for itself. Rodgers was already at a severe disadvantage as Brady had already won 3 Super Bowls before Rodgers had even been drafted. So if we want to be more fair to Rodgers, as he had to wait 3 seasons before becoming a starts, (unlike Brady who became the starter after only 1 season) but the players want to look at the whole resume and here is what it looked like:

Tom Brady (left) vs. Aaron Rodgers (right)

Entire Career

  • W-L Record:  183-52 vs. 90-45
  • Total Completion Percentage: 63.8% vs. 65.1%
  • Quarterback Rating: 97.2 vs. 104.1

Per Game

  • Passes Completed: 22.1 vs. 21.4
  • Passes Attempted: 34.7 vs. 32.8
  • Yards Total: 259.8 vs. 259.3
  • Touchdowns: 1.9 vs. 2.1
  • INT: 0.6 vs. 0.5
  • Sacks: 1.8 vs. 2.4

You can look at every single statistic out there but at the end of the day, it matters on what the player has accomplished in his career, and no Quarterback has done what Tom Brady has done. We could go over regular season stats all day, but come playoffs it gets even crazier. Brady has won 25 out of 34 playoffs game while Rodgers had only won 9 out 16. If Rodgers loses two more playoff games he will match the number of losses Brady has already even though they have a significant age gap.

Rodgers vs. Brady is simply another case of Brady vs. Manning except Manning you could still make arguments for wheres with Rodgers, he still has plenty left to prove but right now: it’s not even close. When both players are retired, we will have a more clear picture, but for now, Brady is the clear winner if we base it on purely accomplishments, but if we are basing it on how the other would fair on the other team, that would be a story to tell.

Many have argued Brady is simply a system type player who fell into the best support system in the NFL. Here is a question: Can a QB win a game, without a system of any kind in place? If you answered yes, you are wrong. When teams design an offense that caters specifically to a quarterbacks strengths, and minimizes any exposure of their weaknesses, then it creates a successful quarterback that some would think is overachieving of one’s actual talent. Which is what the term; system quarterback, comes from. However, a QB needs a system in place if they want to have success with their team as football is a team sport. In a weird way, every QB is a system QB. Nobody can just throw to players down the field and tell one of his men to call plays and hope it all works out. It takes months, or even years to develop a proper system and trying to use it as some sort of excuse for a player’s success, is just ridiculous.

Let me say this: Brady had no expectations coming into the NFL as a 6th round draft pick out of Michigan, whereas Rodgers was a 1st round pick out of California, so he already had high expectations to begin with. Both players have earned their status to be recognized as the best in the league, and will more than likely be first-ballot Hall-of-famers, but in terms of legacy: Brady wins, without question.

New England Patriots

Patriots Football Talk: Blowout in Foxborough

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Patriots

It was another cold January night at Gillette Stadium.  But on the field what we saw was an Offense on fire.  The Patriots were playing their, now annual, AFC Divisional Playoff Game.  Yes, that’s right they do this every year!  They have won their Division 9 Straight Times.  They have earned a 1st Round Bye 8 straight times.  And they have played in the AFC Conference Game, ah hem, now 7 straight times.  Yes it has been quite a run.  In Saturday Night’s Game against Tennessee, the Patriots, showed some of the best that the Team had to offer.  As you can see by the title of this post, it was a blowout.  One for the history books!  Let’s get right into the play by play action.

Ok, so it was cold, we know that; but did you see the “Scuba Suit” that Tom Brady was wearing?  Yeah he came prepared to play all 60 Minutes.  Now the Patriots got the ball first at Kickoff and they only had one 1st Down before they had to Punt it.  It was a slow start before the “Fireworks”.  On their next possession Brady just missed an open Rob Gronkowski.  It would have been a big play if Brady didn’t throw it at his shoelaces.  He was wide open and uncovered at the line of scrimmage. You could tell right then and there that the Titan’s Defense had some communication problems.  As Tony Romo commented: “They looked discombobulated.”

Then the longest Drive allowed by the Patriots came.  The Titans went 95 Yards down the field from their own end zone to score.  It was a Touchdown pass by Marcus Mariota to Corey Davis [7-0].  The long Drive ate up most of the clock of the 1st Quarter.  And the Titans looked strong.  But man oh man, did they “awaken a sleeping Dragon.”

The fire was lit under the Patriots and they responded with a huge 2nd Quarter.  They went down the field with several heroic plays by Dion Lewis.  Then James White came in for a 5 Yard pitch and catch TD [7-7].  3 Minutes and 37 Seconds later James White would score another TD, this time on the ground [14-7].  White would end up having 3 Carries for 11 Yards with a Rushing TD, and 4 Receptions for 29 Yards with a Receiving TD.  It was just some excellent “Hurry Up” Offense.  See the Patriots knew that the Titans were using the same Defensive Line.  And as Tony Romo noted throughout the game, they were getting worn out and tired.  The “No Huddle” Offense proved to be New England’s best weapon against a strong Defensive Line.

Later in the 2nd Quarter Brady threw a 4 Yard TD to Chris Hogan [21-7].  Once again Dion Lewis was a huge factor in the Drive.  Lewis would wind up with 15 Carries for 62 Yards and 9 Receptions for 79 Yards.  Another stellar game for him.  The Pats wanted to score again before the Half but Steven Gostkowski missed a 53 Yard Field Goal.  Let’s face it, it was difficult to make in these conditions.

The Patriots would show an impressive Defense in the 2nd Half.  They would go on to Sack Mariota 8 times for the game.  One of those huge Sacks came on Tennessee’s first possession.  It was just what the Patriots needed.  A stop, to get their Offensive Juggernaut back on the field.  They would end up scoring again on a 2 Yard TD Rush by Brandon Bolden [28-7].  One of the key play makers of the Team was Danny Amendola.  Who had 13 Targets 11 Receptions for 112 Yards.  He was sensational!  Then towards the end of the 3rd Quarter Brady threw to Rob Gronkowski for a 5 Yard Touchdown [35-7].  Gronk would get targeted 9 times with 6 Receptions for 81 Yards with a TD.  It was now “officially” a blowout!

Tennessee would score another touchdown but it was in “garbage time”, ie at the end of the game.  [35-14] was the final score and with that the Patriots moved on to their next opponent Steelers/Jaguars for AFC Championship at 3:05 pm next Sunday.  Tom Brady had a heck of a game, going 35-53 Passes for 337 Yards with 3 TDs.  He is now the oldest player to win a NFL Playoff Game, at age 40.  And with this win it became New England’s 26th Playoff Win out of 35 Playoff Appearances.  Wow what a great number, 35!  Congrats Pats!  I can’t wait to watch you next week!

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Patriots Talk: The Rift Within The Patriots Is Overblown

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New England Isn’t Fazed By This News

 

Talking about this subject reminds me of how Deflategate, SpyGate, and many other news reports seemingly jumped on the Patriots. In fact, some reports have been very mixed about the latest ‘bombshell’ from ESPN’s Seth Wickersham. On one hand, the piece goes over many details that come from sources that aren’t named. The writer for the article, Wickersham, has done pieces like this before regarding the NFL. He has been a senior writer for ESPN for years now. Wickersham has stood by his sources in a radio interview he did last week:

 

I think the reporting process in a story like this has to remain as confidential as possible. I was as transparent as I could be in the story.

 

Transparency is one thing but the thing here is that he had gotten this story from multiple sources inside the Patriots organization, ranging from staffers, coaches and even players. However, by not naming the people involved in this report, you also will be criticized because many will suggest you are making these up.

 

But criticizing the writer is not the topic of this article. It’s to report that this is all been blown way out of proportion. To the point, that some writers have stated they believe Belichick will coach the New York Giants next season due to Robert Kraft interfering in the Jimmy Garopollo trade last October.

 

Who Is Stuck In The Middle?

 

Here is where I believe that article is right and wrong. The writer is correct in that the Patriots had some serious decisions to make regarding the Garropolo trade but that was not even close to the main issue. Many have gone as far to suggest that Kraft had made this decision personal which Kraft has denied and called ‘total fabrication and fiction’ multiple times since the report was released. When he was asked about the trade deadline and Jimmy G, Kraft told Peter King of Sport Illustrated:

 

I assumed once the season started, we’d talk again at the end of the season about it. The next time I spoke with Bill about it was the Monday before the trade deadline. Bill asked me if I was OK with this. I was really taken aback a little bit. I wanted to think about it. I talked to Jonathan, who was okay with it, and I called Bill back and said, ‘OK.’

 

The ESPN article was mainly centered around owner Robert Kraft, Had Coach Bill Belichick and star Quarterback Tom Brady. The three have filed  a joint statement regarding this article, staying they are ‘united.’

 

 

But one of the most interesting sides to this story, is regarding Tom Brady’s personal trainer and business partner, Alex Guerrero. From ESPN:’

 

New players felt the surest way to earn Brady’s trust was to join Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola and others by seeking advice from Guerrero at his TB12 clinic — and not team doctors, which Belichick preferred … But according to multiple sources, players openly discussed with Patriots coaches, staff and trusted advisers whether to follow Brady or the team, leaving them trapped: Do we risk alienating the NFL’s most powerful coach or risk alienating the NFL’s most powerful quarterback?

 

This right here is just way exaggerated. Brady and Belichick don’t let egos divide players, these are grown men, not children trying to please the teachers. They will follow what will best suit their interests and just follow the Patriots motto ‘Do Your Job.’ Simply, asking advice and ways to improve performance and seeing what will work shouldn’t have to be complicated unless you players are questioning their own life choices.

 

How Much Is This True?

 

Everyone outside of New England has been eager in seeing the Patriots finally falling off, but the latest reports claim that Brady, Kraft and Belichick will have a meeting with each other after the season is officially over. According NFL Network’s Ian Rappaport:

 

But my understanding is [the marriage between Kraft, Belichick and Brady] is expected to continue past this season. First there is Bill Belichick, under contract for several more years and Belichick came out and said he absolutely believes he’ll be the Patriots coach next year and from what I understand I don’t see any situation where Robert Kraft allows anything besides that. Then there is Tom Brady. Of course, he is also under contract, he is never getting traded from the Patriots he is going to retire there, so it’s really on these three guys to come together after the season, figure it out and move forward.

 

So by all accounts, Belichick is not likely leaving because of what he has built in New England, Brady is still under contract till 2019, and Kraft isn’t suddenly handing the reigns to his son Jonathon Kraft, President of The Kraft Group. So this story will contnued to be addressed but don’t expect this story to hurt the PAtriots moral. At this point, the team is just focused on beating the Tennessee Titans at home on Saturday’s matchup at 8:15 PM EST.

 

 

 

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Patriots Talk: Terry Glenn’s Autopsy Discovers Multiple Substances

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Reports Show Alcohol and Marijuana In His System

It’s been almost three months since the news of Terry Glenn’s death hit the NFL like a storm. We see deaths everyday outside of sports but his death unexpected. He had been out of football for almost a decade and he died at the young age of 43.

Terry Glenn died on Nov. 20th of last year in a fatal car accident on a highway in Irving, Texas. At the time, there was some hesitation in the report due to the fact that the report was coming from TMZ Sports. However, multiple reports have come forward that verify that the autopsy report was accurate.

According to the report, Glenn had an blood alcohol level of .165, which is twice the legal limit to drive. On top of that, they found traces of marijuana in his system. This would have contributed to his losing control on the highway that resulted in his death.

His passing has been one that has seemingly been forgotten as Glenn is now buried in Dallas, Texas. His public memorial was held at the Friendship West Baptist Church on December 1st, 2017. He played for 12 seasons in the NFL, he played for the New England Patriots from 1996 till 2001.

Glenn is survived by his fiancee, Verina LeGrand, his mother Denetta Glenn, his four sons; Terrance Jr., Christian, Tatum, Greyson; three daughters, Natalie, Samantha and Vanessa; two stepdaughters, Paxstyn and Vyviene; his sister, Dorothy; and most of his extended family from Ohio and across the country.

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