Week 4 - Dolphins @ Patriots

Ralphwiggum

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So here we are in a somewhat familiar position. It is September, and the Pats kind of look like shit. For whatever reason, this has been the pattern the last few years, but as we all know they have always found a way to right the ship. Can they find a way to do it again?

A loss on Sunday to the Dolphins will put the Phins at 4-0 and the Pats at 1-3. Not insurmountable, but certainly not the position they would want to be in after four weeks if they plan on winning the AFC East for the 10th straight time and 16th time in 18 years. It's pretty close to a must win game.

Zombie Tom Brady and Zombie Bill Belichick can't be all the way dead yet, can they? It'll probably be ugly at times, but I think they figure out a way to get it done. Go Pats!
 
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NJ_Sox_Fan

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The Dolphins have looked pretty good, and the Pats terrible, and this is the NFL ... so, Pats win in a blowout 42-20.
 

mikeot

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Home game: down with the crowd, smoke, flintlocks and this guy: Pats eek out a W
 

brandonchristensen

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If the Pats lose, it will be legitimately confusing. Starting 1-2 isn't the worst thing in the world, starting 1-3 is unprecedented for this dynasty.
 

dcmissle

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If they want to avoid scrambling at the end of the season just to get 5 or 6 seed, tomorrow is must win.
 

OurF'ingCity

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Yeah, tomorrow’s game will be very telling for this season as a whole. If they win, they are 2-2, right where they’ve been many of their past seasons where they have made the Super Bowl. If they lose and let the Dolphins get to 4-0 while they are at 1-3, however, I think it’s safe to say the entire paradigm of the season changes and, for this season at least, they will be “just” another ok NFL team scrambling for a playoff spot.
 

cheekydave

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Lifelong Pats fan, watched them play at Boston College my first game seeing them in the 60s....My gut tells me the Pats lose badly tommorrow, and tht this is the season it finally crashes and burns. Watching Kansas City, The Rams, etc I see so many dynamic young explosive players, and just do not see that on the Pats. Yes I am aware that the first 4 games for the Pats these days are really irrelevant, as they always seem to gel, get a few veteran players, and peak in December, BUT just not seeing it this year, and suprisingly sanguine about it. 18 years of excellence is ABSURD in the free agency era. How many teams have come and gone? Indy? Seattle? Baltimore? Giants? Broncos? Great for 2 to 3 years then into the abyss. OK flame away, just that its ok not to be the best anymore....
 

TheoShmeo

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Lifelong Pats fan, watched them play at Boston College my first game seeing them in the 60s....My gut tells me the Pats lose badly tommorrow, and tht this is the season it finally crashes and burns. Watching Kansas City, The Rams, etc I see so many dynamic young explosive players, and just do not see that on the Pats. Yes I am aware that the first 4 games for the Pats these days are really irrelevant, as they always seem to gel, get a few veteran players, and peak in December, BUT just not seeing it this year, and suprisingly sanguine about it. 18 years of excellence is ABSURD in the free agency era. How many teams have come and gone? Indy? Seattle? Baltimore? Giants? Broncos? Great for 2 to 3 years then into the abyss. OK flame away, just that its ok not to be the best anymore....
No flames here. This is my gut too. I see too much suck on both sides of the ball. And too much talent drain.

I hope I’m wrong and would love for this post to be mocked after the game and really all season.
 

Super Nomario

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Doesn't sound like Gordon will be active tomorrow, according to Zo and The Beetle.
It won't surprise me if Gordon is inactive, but it would be pretty surprising to see it leaked in advance like this.

No Ralph Webb promotion; a little surprising with both Hill and Burkhead on IR. That leaves Michel (24 career carries), White (126), and Kenjon Barner (77) as the only active RBs. They ready to ride Sony hard, see some untapped ability to run in White / Barner, or just expect to throw a lot?
 

DeadlySplitter

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Zolak is pretty plugged in.

they really need to win the next two games, not just this one. the Fins and Colts really shouldn't be a problem at home, but feels like it will be a massive challenge with the diminished roster.
 

TheoShmeo

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Zolak is pretty plugged in.

they really need to win the next two games, not just this one. the Fins and Colts really shouldn't be a problem at home, but feels like it will be a massive challenge with the diminished roster.
Yep, my guess is that Zolak isn’t just spit balling here.

Assuming he’s right, this totally sucks. The Pats WR crew needed an upgrade.

I assume Gordon’s issue is health, and not that he doesn’t know the offense. If it’s indeed the latter, even using him as a decoy would be beneficial, I would think.

Bill’s ways have always been inscrutable but his decision making around the offense heading into this season and even now has been difficult to understand. At least for me.
 

pdaj

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Per Rapoport, via Twitter:

The #Patriots, who traded for Josh Gordon (hamstring) a week ago, may see the debut of their talented WR today vs the #Dolphins. There is a “good chance” he plays today, source said, provided a pre-game workout goes well and Bill Belichick decides he’s ready.
Considering all of the ifs at play here, this Rap' report seems to grade out as a 2 out of 5 on the confidence scale.
 

Jed Zeppelin

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OL needs to block a whole hell of a lot better today in the run game. Can’t get blown off the line and stick us with 3rd and long and a doubled Gronk all day.

On the other hand, don’t open the game with run run pass again.
 

Super Nomario

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OL needs to block a whole hell of a lot better today in the run game. Can’t get blown off the line and stick us with 3rd and long and a doubled Gronk all day.

On the other hand, don’t open the game with run run pass again.
They are going from facing the 32nd-ranked run defense in the league in Detroit (5.4 opponents' YPC) to the 3rd-ranked run D in Miami (3.3). So this might be a game like against the Rex Ryan Bills where they just come out and spread the field and throw-throw-throw, even with a lead.
 

Jed Zeppelin

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They are going from facing the 32nd-ranked run defense in the league in Detroit (5.4 opponents' YPC) to the 3rd-ranked run D in Miami (3.3). So this might be a game like against the Rex Ryan Bills where they just come out and spread the field and throw-throw-throw, even with a lead.
One of my favorite games of the whole run was against the Vikings some decade or so ago, when they had a stout run D and all the talking heads spent the week wondering if the Pats would be able to move the ball so easily.

A couple dozen passing plays later and it was basically over in the first half.
 

Mystic Merlin

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Per Rapoport, via Twitter:



Considering all of the ifs at play here, this Rap' report seems to grade out as a 2 out of 5 on the confidence scale.
Lol that’s a classic ‘report.’

Pretty sure every player getting on the field is subject to BB ‘deciding he’s ready’.

Anyways, dc is right. The Pats are playing for a wild card spot if they lose this game. If they win, they’re in the division hunt.
 

sodenj5

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Schefter just said Reshad Jones is out today. Surprising.
Tough for Miami. They had some major breakdowns in the secondary against Oakland last week.

Minkah Fitzpatrick probably replaces Reshad with Torry McTyer playing the boundary in nickel.
 

Super Nomario

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Jonathan Jones has taken Rowe’s job, basically.
Rowe's hurt - he didn't practice Thursday and was limited Wednesday and Friday. Jason McCourty has been the primary recipient of snaps in Rowe's absence; we'll see how things shake out among the three of them (and Jackson / Jones / Crossen I guess) when Rowe is healthy.
 

Mystic Merlin

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Rowe's hurt - he didn't practice Thursday and was limited Wednesday and Friday. Jason McCourty has been the primary recipient of snaps in Rowe's absence; we'll see how things shake out among the three of them (and Jackson / Jones / Crossen I guess) when Rowe is healthy.
Good catch, I missed that development.

Worried we will see some infuriating read option and third and 7 boundary runs from Tannehill against our slow LB
 

Soxy Brown

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Not a great sign that John Simon has been on the team five minutes and is active over Rivers and Davis.
Davis has been trash. I, for one, am thrilled that he's deactivated.

(Though your larger point that the guy who has been with the team less than a week is considered to be a better option than the guys that have been here since camp started..... yeah, that's a sign of deeper issues than the mere fact that Davis is a dumpster fire.)

I keep waiting for them to give Grissom some run on defense. Guess that ain't happening. He at least has some speed, which is more than can be said for pretty much everyone else on the front 7.
 

cgori

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Summary: QB Luke Falk, QB David Fales, WR DeVante Parker, TE A.J. Derby, DE Andre Branch, LB Chase Allen, S Reshad Jones
 

Jed Zeppelin

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FWIW, I recall Rivers playing deep into preseason game 4 and doing absolutely nothing against the Giants backup OL, which was pretty troubling considering how bad their starting OL is.
 

Super Nomario

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I keep waiting for them to give Grissom some run on defense. Guess that ain't happening. He at least has some speed, which is more than can be said for pretty much everyone else on the front 7.
FWIW Grissom was also on the injury report this week.

Brian Schwenke active over Ted Karras was also surprising, though hopefully irrelevant.
 

BaseballJones

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So far this has been a disastrous sports weekend. Alma mater lost yesterday. Red Sox have been pummeled by the Yankees twice (meaningless games but still). US got crushed by Europe in the RC.

Would really like the Pats to please win today. Given how lousy it’s been, I don’t think I’m asking too much.

I hope.
 

Ed Hillel

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So far this has been a disastrous sports weekend. Alma mater lost yesterday. Red Sox have been pummeled by the Yankees twice (meaningless games but still). US got crushed by Europe in the RC.

Would really like the Pats to please win today. Given how lousy it’s been, I don’t think I’m asking too much.

I hope.
Al Horford sprained his wrist, too :)
 

Mystic Merlin

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That’s cool and all, but I have a feeling the 15 snaps he gets and 1-2 incorrect routes, with a Brady glare sprinkled on top, will prove a temporary distraction from our tire fire of a front seven were.