The New England Patriots were on top of the winning list after their 17-14 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers. As they prepare for their inaugural home game, they will face another AFC team at the Baltimore Ravens.
Let’s empty the #PostPulpit mailbag while we get ready for Sunday’s game.
@BTWOM007 I have to believe the offense is more than what we saw…I know talent is generally average but a little creativity would help. Not a question in and of itself, but do you think we’ll see more creativity off the offensive any time soon?
AYEDONSZN Why are our infractions so bad?
We talked about this at length in the mailbag last week. The summary was that the Patriots didn’t have the skill site talent to win matches and games themselves, so they needed to be more creative with their gameplay designs.
They took a positive step forward in this division in Week 2, slightly increasing their use of action games while also calling RPOs for the first time this season. More of that should be on the horizon, especially the action of play as they intentionally kept it to a minimum as they faced off against two super-aggressive defenses to start the year.
One of the biggest outcomes of the victory over Pittsburgh was their ability to attack man-to-man defenses. The Patriots have seen a lot of men’s looks from opposing defenses lately and Mac Jones wasn’t very good against those looks last season. Since the New England builders don’t pose many threats individually, the defenses will match them to the man and hold the box to stop the run.
But against Pittsburgh, the Patriots attacked covering their men inside a crossing and digging roads. They also had their most explosive play of the season – Nelson Agulor’s 44-yard touchdown – after the Steelers turned around in a Cover 1 decal after a snap. As the safety high scores toward Hunter Henry’s crossing road in third, Jones takes his shot to Agholor one-on-one down the sideline. Agholor makes the disputed catch and the rest is history.
From now on, the Patriots’ offense will benefit if they can continue to prove they can consistently beat man-to-man cover. More eye candy to pair with that will really keep this process going.
Also, they will continue to look better as communication improves. The offensive line took a positive step forward in this division last week in the running game and keeping Mac Jones clean in the passing game.
lukeobriendNFL How do you drop a question? Will Marcus Cannon be back with JH Trade?
@Skywal1Thaddeus With Justin Heron gone, do you think Bates will sign Marcus Cannon to the active roster?
First, I just answered your first question, Luke.
As for Marcus Cannon, I don’t think they would have made this deal if they hadn’t been comfortable with Cannon, as well as Yudney Cajost, who appears to have won third place to interfere with Heron. I think for now they will keep Cannon on the coaching staff and raise him as/if needed.
Space_Bandito What is stopping TE from getting the ball?
thenamberjuan why if we sign two TE’s, we don’t use them?
To start, there is something wrong with Hunter Henry. Having been a bit young at times last year, it was a disastrous start for Henry in sophomore year. He’s only been taken in two receptions on four goals, and while he’s never really mind running, he’s been impossibly bad in that regard. The reason New Englanders used to choose three sets of receivers was likely with Lil’Jordan Humphrey on the field rather than the tight end groups.
The fall makes it look like Henry is dealing with something, perhaps the undisclosed injury that forced him to waste time during training camp.
As for Juno Smith, you just need to keep putting him in strands to succeed. Last week they tried to get him a short pass by RPO but the play was blown by Pittsburgh. Beyond that, short passes, screens, passes, and anything to get the ball into the space where he can use his skills to run after run. He also opened in the first week but was toppled and looked at fluent running corners, opening cleanly on a one rep versus Pittsburgh.
Ofc_Dibble Do you see your Mac’s intelligence or questionable decisions as a regression or do you still feel comfortable with a new offense? … FWW I think it’s still stable in the new O
Sunday’s win over Pittsburgh was one of McJones’ worst matches as a professional. He missed a few readings and made a bad objection, while recording another play that deserves a turn as well. There are times when his decision-making feels like it has faltered, which would be worrying because his football IQ is one of his biggest strengths.
But again, two weeks later, new coaches, new regime. Plus, he’s been exercising for the last week on and off due to an illness and is bothered by a back problem. So, no, we didn’t make any conclusions early on against Jones in this aspect. But, this is the main story that we have to follow as we go forward.
DynastyFFNow Parker had a lot of hype from before the season, so far he hasn’t done much early on. Do you think he’s going to be a pre-season Parker from now on or what we’ve seen so far?
It was a disappointing start for Parker, but it was still week two. I think the most important thing here is the timing and the chemistry between him and McJones is still a work in progress. There’s a reason players like Jacoby Myers, Nelson Agulor and Kendrick Bourne are the most receptive threats to New England, because they have the best chemistry with the middle.
Going forward, they likely want to keep Parker on the field in red zone situations, but they may need to reassess his use elsewhere if that’s the production he’s going to make. He has currently played 109 offensive shots and only has one catch on 60 tracks. Getting Agholor and Bourne out on the field more with some of these shots might be the way to go.
@ZiGlizzy1 Where’s Marcus Jones
It was an interesting development for Jones as he went from running with the “people” in bootcamp to being a healthy inactive in the second week. in the field of practice. As a rookie who plays in the corner of the hole, it’s enough for the team to give up the upside and physique of a smart and reliable player like Miles Bryant. Until Jones introduces them more or Bryant’s play forces a change, I expect it to stay the same.
@markandrews72 Will Dogger and Myers play this weekend
Despite being on the brief media segment at the start of Wednesday and Thursday practices, neither Douger nor Myers have exercised this week. It’s not a positive sign, and they will likely need at least a limited session on Friday to get their shot on Sunday.
oinwards How many drafts do we give up to get Lamar next season? say 3
It’s a free, unrestricted client, so nothing. You’ll just have to be prepared to part with a lot – and I mean a lot – of money – something Belichick hinted at this week.
etcblod Why didn’t the Patriots gain better reception last season
They did not want to give up on the first capital project and therefore did not have the funds available for any potential recipient to sign a new contract. Davante Adams, Tyreek Hill, AJ Brown went on for first-round picks and more, then signed deals worth over $20 million on average.
Marquis Brown also went on to be a first-round pick and is set to participate in his fifth-year pick next season. He could have been Amari Cooper from a value standpoint (fifth and sixth round pick), but he’s in the third year of a five-year, $100 million contract.
This is now the norm in the NFL. Wide receivers are premium players, and the best way to secure elite talent is to either pay in terms of venture capital or on checkbooks (and sometimes both).
JeremeyT_Allan Who would you like the Patriots to target with their most likely top 10 draft pick? WR 1 True or what do you think we need?
As we just discussed, it’s hard to turn down the best reception talent on a large scale if they have a first venture capital project. Jaxon-Smith Njigba or Kayshon Boutte can both be game-changers on the offensive side of the ball.
I also expect them to tackle one of their previous picks next spring. Cornerback can also be running. This is a conversation we’ll save for later, however,
belding Are we going to recruit anyone from Georgia? It looks like an upcoming program. # Goddess
Did you forget 2018 when they took over Isaiah Wynn and Sony Michel in the first round? Georgia can’t get any more than that, especially since they won the Super Bowl that year.
But seriously, I’m always on board to draft the Georgia defensive players. We mentioned the corner kick as a potential necessity above, and Georgia’s Kelly Ringo could be a talent in the first round this year. Offensively, dealing with Broderick Jones could also be in the same discussion. Again, a long way to go there.
@Betancourt10Bos Do you think we’ll see gray/silver pants in the future?
or not. They teased them during in-stadium training this off-season, both with the old tape (Bourne/Parker) and the new tape colorway (Juno). I think they look a lot better than looking blue over blue.
That’s it for this week’s #PostPulpit mailbag. If you have questions you’d like answered next week, post them on Twitter with #PostPulpit! Make sure to follow Tweet embed And the Tweet embed like that!
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