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Friday, September 8, 2017

Pats Drop Season Opener, Brady Expires Like Milk?

Forty. Tom Brady is now forty. In case ya haven't heard, the talk as of late hath been pointed toward that fact like the expiration date on a jug of milk. Chiseled in stone, written on the wall, and dyed in wool. Unforgivingly so and sans grace period. It's of no matter that the fella keeps care of himself like virtually none-other. Think milk kept in a deep-freeze, as opposed to an August window-sill. It's right there in clear blueish ink on the side of the gallon-sized plastic container. But real life ain't that cut-and-dry, right? Of course not. Then the Patriots go ahead and drop their season-opener to the very OK KC squad, 42-27, and NE is done. Done too, is their 87 home-game stretch of being victorious whenst leading at the half and at home. We done here, then? Is there anything more dangerous than Andy Reid in a meaningless game?
Maybe and no, to answer my own previous two queries. We'll look at the maybe. New England has lost their season opener before on Brady's watch. Thrice actually, in 2001, '03, and '14. If those seasons ring a bell, by the by, it's most likely because they all ended with Super Bowl rings for the Pats. Plus, we all know Belichick can deftly scheme his way out of or around all problems.  But then-again, the issue at play in last night's loss was perchance less due (date) to 40 candles, and more due to personnel. Belichick can right the ship, if it's already so wrong after a single game as to need righting, but if it is it shall be requiresome of strategic reinforcements. Lettuce then look beyond Brady first completely, and to the other side of the ball:

Most glaringly, is that the Patriots defense got that 42 hung on 'em. That coming on the strength of Kansas City garnering 537 yards. To be clear, the Chiefs are not exactly "high octane." The Pats simply did not rush Smith, did not make him move nor throw on the move. This allowed the moderate+ QB to make them look perfectly awful at times. Remember, Belichick is down two athletic to say the least defenders, in Jones and Collins. Personnel.

Now back to the offense writ large: Remember when it looked like the Pats would put them away in the 1st quarter? I mean if Gronk (whom I'm convinced must be an acquired taste) holds on in the end-zone, mayhaps they doth. But then they continued to over-target him. Six times to be exact... for a tally of two catches. Are they that excited to have a healthy Gronk, or do they find themselves lacking in other options? Personnel. What about the play of their o-line? They surrendered three sacks all in the second half. The first half saw way less pressure, enabling Brady to stand in his flat-footed manner, surveying the field. Were they fatigued? Personnel?
And now we return to Tom Brady: He whom went for 16 of 36 on the evening. I've mused before that the zenith of one's career is too, his trigger-plling zenith. The peak of an athlete is not the peak of his speed, power, or even IQ. It is his trigger pulling. Seeing the spot and filling the spot. Brady missed more open and nigh open receivers than I'd seen him miss in the past. So, what to make of all this? Dunno. I'm not much of a football fan. I imagine Belichick will get his reinforcements. I imagine he is still a football genius. I imagine Brady is over the hill and this will be his most trying and frustrating campaign to date. His numbers will at times be foreign to his own eyes. He shall appear mortal, epis!

The season ends in a final Lombardi Trophy.

Perchance the most troubling news for the Patriots season moving forward comes via ESPN and again with personnel in mind: "New England Patriots wide receiver Danny Amendola, a key part of the team's plans as its adjusts to the season-ending injury sustained by receiver Julian Edelman, left Thursday's season-opening 42-27 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in the fourh [sic] quarter with a head injury and was ruled out by the team."
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"House Party!" Kaplowitz Radio: September 6, 2017