Friday, September 12, 2008

Patriots - October 31, 2007

As we know the Patriots are undefeated thus far in the season going onto facing the Colts. Besides being the talk for their great record the team has come up for other unethical reasons. Lets start the season off and recall Ted Johnson who claimed that Bill Belichick overworked him while he suffered several concussions leading to detrimental injuries to his brain and the rest of his body. Next we had Rodney Harrison suspended for using the banned substance, HGH. Not that hes the only one but he used enough to get caught. Next the Patriots were caught taping signals of their opponents and then transmitting the signals to their coaches or Brady who then audibles plays, changed routes, and blocking assignments. Then the Patriots were discovered to have tapes of every single defensive coordinator in the business. Not one, not just their coaches, not just their division, but everyone eligible for a position. Then the Pats have the issue that they signed coaches and players from other teams for the sole purpose of gaining previous team's playbooks. They weren't the original but the excelled at this. My favorite of all but only to be a rumor was that Al Davis or the Oakland GM was rumored to have been drunk when he made the Moss trade which is really funny. So it's not just one offense.
Despite this the patriots tremendous victories that include margins of 24, 24, 31, 21, 17, 21, 21, and most recently the 52 - 7 win against the Washington Redskins, a respected franchise with a HALL OF FAME coach Joe Gibbs. Before I get to my next point I thought it would be fun to give you the average win margin of the Patriots and then that of the 1972 Dolphins (16-0) and the 1985 Bears (15-1), two of the greatest teams in history of sports without a doubt. The Dolphins had a margin of 13.375 (it did include a beat down of the Patriots of 52-0 which I am quite pleased with but without that single game the margin is 10.125), the Bears had a margin of 16.25. So far the two greatest teams that didn't include any issues except for the Superbowl shuffle which isn't even a negative issue, and actually entertaining and positive for football. While the Pats have had their hand-full. Also there is very little chance that those player took any illegal substances banned by the NFL or the United States of America. We don't know but little chance. And for cheating, unless you consider putting William " The Refrigerator" Perry in the backfield cheating, then they did nothing wrong. Now for the Patriots margin which after 8 games haven't had a win with out them coming out 17 points over (average margin is 25.5 points). If the Patriots didn't have all over the previous controversy around them then it would makes sense but it smells a little fishy around the harbor.
There is also always been the question of Bill Belichick's elegance. He refused to give his form assistant coach Eric Mangini an respect at the end a game with the Jets, with the whole handshake issue. Then LaDainian Tomlinson, possibly the most classy guy in football if not in the whole sports world was offended by Belichick and his players for immoral conduct. Next the most liked guy in the NFL Peyton Manning is considered to be rivals with the Patriots. I never read Batman comics but is you rearrange the letters in "the Joker," "the Penguin," and "Tats" then you can spell The Patriots. So Belicheck maybe one of the few coaches in the NFL that you cannot consider a classy or elegant man. Also I found it unbelievable that the Patriots can get a Pro-bowl quarterback in the 6th round while Ryan Leaf, Akili Smith, Art Schilchter, Cade McNown, Dan McGwire, Steve Pisarkiewicz, Todd Marinovich, Jim Druckenmiller, Patrick Ramsey, Dave Brown, Rick Mirer, Heath Shuler, Tim Couch, Byron Leftwich, Kyle Boller, David Carr, Joey Harrington, and numerous other quarterbacks in the history of the NFL have been drafted in the 1st round had mild or no success in the NFL. Maybe Brady has been given an advantage that other QB's in the first 5 rounds haven't. Not to insult Corey Dillion but the Patriots never had outstanding running numbers which makes the passing stats even more difficult to have accomplished. It looks like those tapes really helped. And so much for the defense with the veterans who "clicked." Its a little weird for a bunch of scrubs to come together and just "click" to become one of the greatest D's in history. Again not trying to insult the player but keys like Lawyer Malloy, Willie McGinest, and Ty Law who were key to the team's success have been decent players but never played at the magnitude that they did in New England. Yes they went to less 'successful' teams but there is no ethical reason for a drop off that occurred in the transitions.
I'm going to leave that as that but it is definitely an interesting debate floating around: " Patriots and Running up the score." First of all it is important to understand what actually happened and what running up the score is. The phrase is used to describe when a team takes advantage of the time one team has done terrible in and used the remaining time to help their stats. Unfortunately it is part of the game in High School because players need recognition and it happens in College because of the BCS formula and the attribution of stats. But in the NFL there is no purpose to run up the score because the only stat that is remembered is your wins and losses; tell me how many wins the 1972 Dolphins had, now how many rushing yards did the offense have and how many sacks did the defense have (if you knew that props) but the point is the stats aren't remembered as well as the record. If someone were to name 10 quarterbacks, most football fans could indicate whether he won a Superbowl but couldn't tell if the quarterback ever had a QB rating over 120 or more than 30 TD's. People remember success not the stats. So running the score up in the NFL is a bit immature. Then there is the starter- injury risk, teams don't want to risk hurting key players just to score more and if you are willing to risk such good players are they really that good? The most important part is the respect and class that comes along. It is very frustrating that men over the age of thirty and up have absolutely no class to not go for it on 4th down when you are up by 30 or try streak routes when you are up by thirty. If a teenager can manage to not bomb in while he is playing Madden which is only a video game than a coach whose team is in good position to win doesn't need to go for it on 4th down for the heck of it. But the funnier part is that Belichick wouldn't have made the calls if it was a tight game. Field position is important in the NFL and teams aren't going to go out wasting downs on down field bombs or risk turnover on downs to give the opposition decent position. The fact is he did it just to embarrass the other team. On some occasions it is okay to embarrass the other team such as when the Washington Redskins smack talked the Chicago Bears in 1940 and then were pumbled 73-0 in the worst loss in NFL history. The team deserved it but when you are playing one of the most respectable coaches who might bench a player for smack talk and is already in the Hall of Fame, there is no reason to embarrass him, when all you are proving is that you dont have respect for legends and their years of hard work. It comes without surprise that out of all the coaches to do this it was sweater man Bill Belichick who was less class than a High School (if coaches like Mike Nolan can wear suits to the game than you can afford to at least wear your team's collared shirt like most coaches or wear a classy jacket for when its cold just as Mike Shanahan in Denver). Fact of the matter is that Bill Belichick doesn't look, sound, or act like an adult.
Point is when there are coaches like Tony Dungy, Lovie Smith, Joe Gibbs, and tons of other guys who are built on elegance, integrity, tolerance, and respect how can you not frown upon Bill Belichick and the rest of the organization.

No comments:

Post a Comment