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Belichick’s personnel moves come under scrutiny

Dallas Cowboys v New England Patriots Getty Images

New England’s loss to Pittsburgh, like every Patriots loss during this decade-long run of success, has caused some soul searching in the most navel-gazing sports town in America.

The focus this Monday is on the lack of defensive talent, as it should be.  With a weak pass rush and a worse secondary, it appears that the Patriots have huge flaws on defense that haven’t improved in the season’s first half.

“Belichick the general manager has let down Belichick the coach,” Greg A. Bedard of the Boston Globe writes. “The Patriots simply don’t have enough talent to beat the elite teams in this league.”

We’re not sure what team is elite anymore. The AFC is littered with good, not great squads. Everyone has two losses. There aren’t many complete teams, although Pittsburgh has a chance if their offensive line holds up.

Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com wrote something about Belichick’s shaky defensive acquisitions before the loss to the Steelers, noting how much the team has swung and missed in the secondary.  After the game, things only looked worse.

“Has Belichick lost his fastball when it comes to defense, both in terms of schemes and personnel evaluation, and is it time for him to open his mind to outside thinking?” Reiss asked.

Other than Devin McCourty and Patrick Chung, the entire secondary is made of “street free agents,” undrafted players, and waiver claims. Too many players with key roles were picked up just before or during this season.

“It was leaking a little in the back end so they were giving us a lot more opportunities to do a lot of different things, and I think we took advantage of it,’’ Antonio Brown of the Steelers said.

Mike Wallace echoed those words, telling Chris Gasper of the Globe the Patriots “still were 32nd” in pass defense, no matter what the reasons were.

Bill Belichick teams traditionally play better late in the year, especially on defense.

Belichick the coach has his work cut out for him this time around because the defensive roster simply isn’t very impressive.

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99 Responses to “Belichick’s personnel moves come under scrutiny”
  1. myspaceyourface says: Oct 31, 2011 11:35 AM

    The Patriots poor defense and lack of running game will be the main 2 reasons they don’t compete for a Super Bowl.

    You can’t win the Super Bowl with a strong passing game alone.

  2. ny82jy says: Oct 31, 2011 11:37 AM

    BB has shown in the last few seasons and especially last night that he has NO confidence in his D. He went for a onside kick with three timeouts left and the two minute warning. He had a terrible day and if any other coach in the league pulled that they would be getting ripped apart today. The pats cant win anything with the defense they have this year imo. They cant rely on their offense every game cause when they play teams with good defenses their offense isnt always gonna pick them up like yesterday.

  3. steviemo says: Oct 31, 2011 11:39 AM

    Also, no championships since Spygate. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

  4. rexismybff says: Oct 31, 2011 11:41 AM

    Nothing that a little bit of cheating won’t cure.

  5. dcfan4life says: Oct 31, 2011 11:42 AM

    This isnt new. Belichick has always been able to do so much with so little on defense. For maybe the first time since he has been the Pats coach, he really hasn’t been able to do anything. That Pass defense is so bad. Everytime Brady is held in check, the Pats should lose. And that will be 6 times this year, and first round exit in the playoffs. Back to the drawing board this offseason after week 8 lol.

  6. joetoronto says: Oct 31, 2011 11:46 AM

    “Belichick’s personnel moves come under scrutiny”

    It’s about damn time.

  7. goawayeverybody says: Oct 31, 2011 11:47 AM

    Let’s all be honest with ourselves. As of this moment there is only one elite team in football and that’s the Green Bay Packers. Perhaps the Steelers, but we’ll know more after they face the Ravens this weekend. The Ravens are clearly not elite. The Saints just lost to a team with nothing left to play for except pride. The Patriots defense has looked silly all year. The 49ers might be the closest to elite, given their awesome defense.

  8. nyjalleffingday says: Oct 31, 2011 11:48 AM

    Yeah, it’s pretty porous. Luckily their offense is a football freight train that can hold them up, but you guys saw what happened when they can’t. And in a semi-related note, if Schotty doesn’t let Sanchez throw all day in 2 weeks, I will be furious.

  9. redbullenergydrink says: Oct 31, 2011 11:50 AM

    The NFL is simply amazing… One week you’re considered the greatest coach and the next week, people are questioning your every move. After the Pats win next week, everyone will be talking about how great of a coach Belichick is.

  10. gregjennings85 says: Oct 31, 2011 11:51 AM

    The Hoodie can’t draft to save his life.

  11. wtfpft says: Oct 31, 2011 11:53 AM

    How dare you question the football god known as Bill Belichick. Oh wait he’s a product of cheating. Question away.

  12. pleasantsurpriselefty says: Oct 31, 2011 11:57 AM

    With the defensive liabilities visible before the last draft, 3 of the first 4 choices were offensive players. If they miss the SB again this year they MUST draft for the defense and not continue that trade down nonsense they have made into an art form.

  13. AlanSaysYo says: Oct 31, 2011 11:59 AM

    The sky was falling last season when they got whipped by the Browns, and then they ripped off 8 straight wins.

    Belichick doesn’t just throw his hands up in the air and quit. If the defense is fixable, he’ll fix it. And this is coming from a guy who’s rooting for a Pats loss every week.

  14. chas88 says: Oct 31, 2011 11:59 AM

    steviemo says:Oct 31, 2011 11:39 AM

    Also, no championships since Spygate. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

    ———————————————————-
    The Pats won those championships with a superb defense, which they obviously do not have now. How is that so hard to understand? You can’t win SBs with offense alone, which is why they haven’t contended lately. That defense has been on its way down for years now.

  15. mike5011ad says: Oct 31, 2011 12:02 PM

    Antwaun Molden never saw the field over the last 3 years for the Houston Texans, who had one of the worst defenses in the NFL over that time peiod. He was cut midway through preasesaon when it was evident he would not be able to make the CB rotation. Now he’s playing significant time in New England’s secondary!? That screams lack of talent and poor personnell moves for the Patriots…

  16. iknowitallandmore says: Oct 31, 2011 12:02 PM

    Jerry Jones and Dan Snyder are better at picking football talent. Face it, admit it, and own up to it: Belicheat built a “genuis” reputation by fraud.

    People are finally seeing the REAL Belichick:: Average coach, average talent evaluator, who only won by cheating

  17. ken0west says: Oct 31, 2011 12:03 PM

    He passed on Mike Wallace for B. Tate. Dude is living off legend at this point, like Champ B’s last 5 pro bowls :)

  18. blackbug99 says: Oct 31, 2011 12:03 PM

    @nyjalleffingday

    Maybe you might want to focus on the Bills game NEXT weekend, before you prep for the Pats.

  19. scyankee9999 says: Oct 31, 2011 12:03 PM

    Bad moves by coach BB? I don’t think so. Here is what I think the problem is. Top notch players are no longer willing to take big pay cuts to play for the Pats just to win a SB as there are other teams that are competitive in the AFC. After this labor lockout it’s clear to the players they need to take the big free agent contracts that they were once willing to give up for a ring. Wins or cash. The Pats were one the team that mid aged top tier free agents turned down more money to play for to get the ring. Those days are gone making the AFC more comparative. A win for the fans. Thanks labor lockout.

  20. august1969 says: Oct 31, 2011 12:06 PM

    The defense is god awful, declining each season. Ocho is a waste of space. Cut Ocho, for gods sake, not Bodden. Pats are cooked. Its so sad to see players like Paul Pierre doing well.

  21. redrew says: Oct 31, 2011 12:08 PM

    5 points:
    1) Belichicks defenses play a “not to lose defense” ….keeping the play in front of them hoping the QB will make a mistake eventually. Good QBs don’t make mistakes.
    2) Belichick defenses “react” instead of “attack”. Similar to point #1. Get the lead on New England, and teams have little to fear regarding their D
    3) The defensive roster is atrocious. Three solid players…Wilfork, Mayo, and Chung surrounded by aging castoffs and fodder. Belichick has failed big time tover the last 4 years of the draft on D.
    4) All drafted DBs have regressed year over year. This is a coaching problem.
    5) Belichick refuses to recognize that tall fast WRS have value….thus, the Patriots WRs are the slowest smallest in the league. Teams bump their WRs at the line with no fear that a Patriot WR will outsprint them deep

    Belichick refuses to adapt and his teams are paying the price.

  22. iknowitallandmore says: Oct 31, 2011 12:09 PM

    What has the Patriots accomplished since getting busted for “misinterpeting the rules”?

    They are known as the team that so generously donated tens of thousands of shirts to needy South American children.

    They are known as the team whose tens of thousands of bandwagon fans abandoned them by halftime on national TV after the Ravens came in and humiliated them

    They also are known as the team who won their Championships by CHEATING.

    Aveage coach
    Average talent evaluator

  23. marcuswelby70 says: Oct 31, 2011 12:09 PM

    Ok, maybe BB should be fired…after all they are only 5-2, and without a doubt one of the top 3 or 4 franchises in the NFL. But hey, he can’t win every game so let’s run him out of town!

  24. snarkzilla says: Oct 31, 2011 12:09 PM

    The constant “cheating” comments are now a cliche and are pointless. Please move on to current time.

  25. rr2000k says: Oct 31, 2011 12:12 PM

    I one damn time I root for NE, the lose

  26. eaglesowngiants says: Oct 31, 2011 12:13 PM

    Well since he can no longer win fairly he will obviously have to cheat…. its just easier

  27. marcuswelby70 says: Oct 31, 2011 12:16 PM

    chas88 says:
    Oct 31, 2011 11:59 AM
    steviemo says:Oct 31, 2011 11:39 AM

    Also, no championships since Spygate. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

    ———————————————————-
    The Pats won those championships with a superb defense, which they obviously do not have now. How is that so hard to understand? You can’t win SBs with offense alone, which is why they haven’t contended lately. That defense has been on its way down for years now.

    —————————————-

    chas88

    You are correct…but please don’t feed the Trolls.

  28. rexismybff says: Oct 31, 2011 12:17 PM

    @scyankee9999 – “Top notch players are no longer willing to take big pay cuts to play for the Pats just to win a SB”

    ==================================

    You made me spray diet coke out my nose. That was genuinely funny!!

  29. Patskrieg dot com says: Oct 31, 2011 12:18 PM

    “it appears that the Patriots have huge flaws on defense that haven’t improved in the season’s first half.”

    Let me correct that for you Greg. In YEARS. The Patriots have huge flaws on defense that haven’t improved in YEARS.

  30. tbonecostanza says: Oct 31, 2011 12:27 PM

    “The Pats won those championships with a superb defense, which they obviously do not have now. How is that so hard to understand? You can’t win SBs with offense alone, which is why they haven’t contended lately. That defense has been on its way down for years now.”

    What part of relying on your kicker bail you out of a game, not once but twice, means you had a superb defense?

  31. aldavisisthenfl says: Oct 31, 2011 12:27 PM

    But the Pats picked our pockets in the Seymour trade………….

  32. 6ball says: Oct 31, 2011 12:31 PM

    .

    Belichick’s 2010 draft:

    1. Devin McCourty
    2a. Rob Gronkowski
    2b. Jermaine Cunningham
    2c. Brandon Spikes
    3. Taylor Price
    4. Aaron Hernandez
    5. Zoltan Mesko
    6. Ted Larson
    7a. Thomas Welch
    7b. Brandon Deardrick

    All are contributors to the current Patriots except Larson, who was astutely snatched off waivers by Tampa. And remember, the Patriots are usually picking at the end of each round.

    .

  33. j0esixpack says: Oct 31, 2011 12:39 PM

    First of all, with the shortened offseason and limited free agency, this was bound to be a year where stocking up on Defense was bound to be tough.

    Add to that a complicated D that put players at a disadvantage early on, and you’re bound to see lower productivity early on.

    As far as stats, the Patriots are 5-2 and in a good position to make the playoffs. They could be the #1 D in week 16 but low stats in week 1-15 would still appear to make them look “bad”

    All that counts is whether a team is peaking come January and if healthy, Belichick coached teams most often are.

  34. joemontanawasthegreatest says: Oct 31, 2011 12:39 PM

    Reminds me a bit of Don Shula. His teams were historically dominant running teams with physical defenses.

    Suddenly he fell in love with the passing game and the rest is history.

  35. bobhk says: Oct 31, 2011 12:41 PM

    It’s about time someone called out Belichicks GM record over the last few years (especially on D side). No wonder they suck. They also can’t really run. Haven’t had a good RB in a long time.

    As always Brady will put up great numbers and Pats will get crushed in round one in playoffs.

  36. bozosforall says: Oct 31, 2011 12:42 PM

    snarkzilla says:
    Oct 31, 2011 12:09 PM
    The constant “cheating” comments are now a cliche and are pointless. Please move on to current time.

    __
    The “we won* three Super Bowls”, “Belichick is a genius”, “Brady is clutch”, comments are equally cliche (and inaccurate) yet the idiot bandwagon Pats fan continue with those as well.

    Get a life, suckzilla.

  37. hooockey says: Oct 31, 2011 12:43 PM

    I’ve been waiting for this article for awhile.

    It’s about time, it seems like all the media wants to do is kiss the Hoodie’s rings. And it’s been a few years since he won.

    No doubt Belichick is an incredible coach, probably the best in the NFL.

    BUT, as GM, he is mediocre at best. Always drafting guy in the 2nd or 3rd round who get cut a couple years later. And as the years go by, the defense just gets worse and worse, as Pioli’s players leave / retire, and now almost every defender is a Hoodie pickup now. They have given up the most yards in the NFL ! 424 per game, 24 worse than the pathetic Colts !

    If Belichick was GM back in the day, I seriously doubt he would have drafted Brady.

    The team’s success is now due to Brady / Welker, and the Hoodie’s offensive wizardry, like using 2 young receiving tight-ends, just brilliant.

    But Bill Belichick the GM is making the team overall worse and worse.

    He could learn from observing someone who is actually good at drafting like Mike Brown (Gasp!).

  38. jimyritz says: Oct 31, 2011 12:43 PM

    There are 18 teams who have never won a SuperBowl and what 14 or 15 who have never been to one..

    Pats have been to 4 since 2000 and have won 3..Pretty darn good…

    I don’t care if they won by 1 point or 20..

    At this point would like to see the Pats hire a legit def coordinator and a legit Personnel guy… Caserio doesn’t count…

    Bottom line, the Personnel moves have been awful…

  39. 4evrnyt says: Oct 31, 2011 12:45 PM

    Why is there an assumption that the Patriots are supposed have to have Pro Bowlers at every position?

    No one is appreciating the fact that they Patriots started a rebuild phase last year on defense and then played better then expectations. It appears that the growing pains were delayed by a year.

    Anyone doubting BB is a fool. I promise that next season this defense ends up being one of the best.

  40. trubroncfan07 says: Oct 31, 2011 12:47 PM

    It’s hard to win games when you don’t know what the other teams plays are going to be. Karma cheaters!

  41. r8rsfan says: Oct 31, 2011 12:48 PM

    What is “navel-gazing”?

  42. unbreakable02215 says: Oct 31, 2011 12:49 PM

    I tried saying all this last week and was chastised
    by the Kool-aid-drinking Pink-hat-wearing
    BB Toadies/Sycophants. “How DARE I question
    the GREAT BB”.

    I’m the biggest BB fan there is. But the dude is 59.
    He’s running the salary cap, he’s running the
    draft, he’s running free agency, he’s running the
    defense, let’s face it, he’s running the offense.
    AND he’s the head coach. Like I said. He’s got
    too much on his plate.

  43. bspurloc says: Oct 31, 2011 12:54 PM

    DEFENSE wins superbowls….. 18-1….. wah….
    ooops brady on his back AGAIN! NO ONE cant get to brady!

    86 bears……

  44. badtimeoutcaldwell says: Oct 31, 2011 12:56 PM

    So basically, the Patriots have turned into the Colts… Strong at QB, everything else sucks…

  45. unbreakable02215 says: Oct 31, 2011 12:57 PM

    BTW, this one-game losing streak is gonna turn
    into a 3 game losing streak. Mark my words.

  46. robertjamis says: Oct 31, 2011 1:01 PM

    What are you talking about?! Belichick is a DRAFT GENIUS! YEAH! If he cuts half his draft picks in training camp, or his entire CLASS, it’s because he wants results now! YEAH! That’s the narrative!

    Who knew it was a bad idea to draft special teamers and supplement them with second chance vets who are likely to fail more often than not?(anyone who wasn’t blinded by Belichick’s rings).

  47. j0esixpack says: Oct 31, 2011 1:07 PM

    While I don’t think even Belichick would assert that he’s been anywhere near perfect in the draft or free agency, here’s the thing that fans of other teams seem to miss.

    Belichick knows he simply needs to make the playoffs with his players peaking and in good health at that time.

    He would gladly give up a win or two to send home the message that you either accept and play your role on the team to the best of your ability, or you’re cut – regardless of what’s left on your contract.

    Given the need at DB, it seems clear to any fan with any intelligence that cutting Bodden before the game might have weakned the team in the short term but will strengthen the team in the long-term.

    He’s cut disgruntled players like Lawyer Milloy and Randy Moss and countless others in the past and the media talking heads have over-reacted while the team met with continued success.

    Stats as of the end of October mean nothing compared to the stats at the end of February – and I can’t think of too many coaches with more Lombardis in the last decade than Belichick.

  48. rc33 says: Oct 31, 2011 1:14 PM

    Every Monday its the same chicken little routine in 15 NFL markets, with one more market to be added to that list later this evening.
    Loooong way to go in 2011.
    Pittsburgh was throttled at home by NE the middle of last season…how’d that work out for the Pats and the Steelers?
    The Jets losing by 42 in Foxboro in Week 13 didn’t mean much just a month later.
    Belichick will get this D playing at a higher level by late season. And methinks everyone knows that.
    Whether it’ll be “good enough” is another question.

  49. svcfilmguy says: Oct 31, 2011 1:15 PM

    Belichick is a football savant, but this is deserved. Since Pioli left, the personnel decisions have been questionable at best. The conversion to the 4-3 has been a disaster. Too many draft picks are underachieving. Honestly, if Belichick wasn’t such a great coach, this team would probably be in the 3-4 win range right now. BB the coach is still a savant. BB the talent evaluator is another story.

  50. usher716 says: Oct 31, 2011 1:16 PM

    Now I’m not saying Scott Pioli is great or anything BUT the Pats have no rings without him. The combination of roles rarely, if ever, works. Unfortunately for the Pats, at this point I don’t think Belichik’s ego would allow for someone to take over that role again. The hoodie is good at stockpiling early round picks but they are more often than not wasted picks in my opinion.

  51. pudgalvin says: Oct 31, 2011 1:17 PM

    maybe its time bill used a few of the draft picks he hoards every year. its nice having picks every year, but those picks arent helping him win football games.

    i think brady would really appreciate having a top notch reciever or running back to get the ball to. brady is as good as there is, but he can only mask deficiencies for so long. kevin faulk? come on bill.

  52. tony1381 says: Oct 31, 2011 1:18 PM

    This unexpected debacle reminds of their surprising loss to the Jets in the playoffs last year. Patterns like that don’t generally emerge with New England teams. The only consistency is their lack of a vertical threat and lack of a consistent pass rush.

    Aside from their opening two games against Miami and San Diego where they accumulated half of their sacks for the season, the pass rush has been up and down.

    It seemed to me during this game that Pittsburgh took a page out of New England, and pretty much copied what they did from the New England/Dallas game (sans the ground attack).

    I still don’t really understand why New England didn’t try running the ball on a defense that has given up over 400 yards in their 5 victories. It would have given their defense some time to rest, since they were on the field so long.

    The results of this one make the Giants game this week much more important.

  53. semperfi24 says: Oct 31, 2011 1:18 PM

    robertjamis says: Oct 31, 2011 1:01 PM

    What are you talking about?! Belichick is a DRAFT GENIUS! YEAH! If he cuts half his draft picks in training camp, or his entire CLASS, it’s because he wants results now! YEAH! That’s the narrative!

    Who knew it was a bad idea to draft special teamers and supplement them with second chance vets who are likely to fail more often than not?(anyone who wasn’t blinded by Belichick’s rings).
    __________________________________

    Not saying you are off base in your remarks, but when you are coaching one of the top teams in football, it means that there arent a lot of holes on your roster. If you have a 53 man roster, and draft 10 players, more than half are going to get cut after training camp. No successful team has enough holes in the roster to need to play 10 rookie starters every week…

    If you can find a team with 10 rookie starters, I will bet that team had a bad record the year before. Do you think the Packers have room for 10 rookies? How about the Steelers, or Saints? Belichick has not been a genius when comes to his drafts in recent years, but there also isnt a whole lot of open roster spots either

  54. marcuswelby70 says: Oct 31, 2011 1:21 PM

    unbreakable02215 says:
    Oct 31, 2011 12:49 PM
    I tried saying all this last week and was chastised
    by the Kool-aid-drinking Pink-hat-wearing
    BB Toadies/Sycophants. “How DARE I question
    the GREAT BB”.

    I’m the biggest BB fan there is. But the dude is 59.
    He’s running the salary cap, he’s running the
    draft, he’s running free agency, he’s running the
    defense, let’s face it, he’s running the offense.
    AND he’s the head coach. Like I said. He’s got
    too much on his plate.
    ————————————-
    I do remember you talking about this last week, and I agree the man has too much on his plate. However, if BB were to resign at the end of the season, there would be a line of about 28 teams looking to hire him as their HC.

  55. unbreakable02215 says: Oct 31, 2011 1:23 PM

    Makes you wonder if he’s doing exactly as he’s
    being told:

    -Move back in the early rounds in the draft to
    avoid paying higher salaries and find
    “diamonds in the rough” and “coach them up”.

  56. ahostiletakeover says: Oct 31, 2011 1:27 PM

    The problem yesterday to me, looked like a lot of soft zone defense. They should have been playing the Steelers young receivers the same way the Steelers DBs were playing them, jam them within those 5 yards, disrupt some timing. The only solid Steelers CB is Taylor, and I know McCourty at least is as good as he is, the Pats could easily have followed LeBeau’s lead. Instead, they continued to let the Steelers do a good job of finding holes in those zones, time after time. As a Ravens fan, here’s hoping Chuck Pagano got the memo for this Sunday.

  57. rtookey says: Oct 31, 2011 1:27 PM

    uhhhh, theyre 5-2 last i checked right… so theyre basically tied for 3rd or 4th place in the league???

  58. dontstabmeray says: Oct 31, 2011 1:28 PM

    Not sure why you aren’t talking about the Patriots offense. The Steelers got some payback. A while back the Patriots “exposed” the Steelers defense by spreading them out. From what I saw yesterday, good ole’ Dick L. exposed the Patriots offense. Simply jam their midget receivers at the line and it is a pretty ordinary offense. Brady is good, but he is not the god everyone thinks he is. By the time the Patriots build up a defense Brady will be in his late 30’s and the game will have passed him by. I’ll drink to that!

  59. ziggy26 says: Oct 31, 2011 1:37 PM

    So let me get this straight, the Patriots lose a road game against a good Pittsburgh team in October, and all of the sudden it’s time to question Bill Belichick’s legacy as both a coach and talent evaluator?

    Isn’t this the same extreme overreaction we saw when Pittsburgh lost a road game to a good Baltimore team in Week 1?

    Why does everything have to be made into a much bigger deal than it really was. The Steelers outplayed the Patriots on Sunday. End of story.

  60. maddog111 says: Oct 31, 2011 1:43 PM

    4evrnyt says:
    Oct 31, 2011 12:45 PM
    Why is there an assumption that the Patriots are supposed have to have Pro Bowlers at every position?

    No one is appreciating the fact that they Patriots started a rebuild phase last year on defense and then played better then expectations. It appears that the growing pains were delayed by a year.

    Anyone doubting BB is a fool. I promise that next season this defense ends up being one of the best.
    ———————————————-
    You promise that based on what? What that you’ve seen over the last 4 or 5 years leads you to believe that next year’s defense will be one of the league’s best?

  61. nuclearwarfare says: Oct 31, 2011 1:47 PM

    Why is it that whenever the Jets and the Patriots lose, the media automatically assumes that the world is ending and both teams seem destined to lose the rest of the games?

    I’m a fan of neither team, but come on! The Jets lose to the Raiders and I’m pretty sure I read that the Earth was being sucked into the sun. Now the Patriots lose to the Steelers, so I can only imagine that the United States is about to be invaded by China, or something.

  62. svcfilmguy says: Oct 31, 2011 1:47 PM

    “Belichick has not been a genius when comes to his drafts in recent years, but there also isnt a whole lot of open roster spots either”

    Well, looking at the defense, I’d say there are plenty of open roster spots.

  63. goawayeverybody says: Oct 31, 2011 2:02 PM

    Btw, didn’t Brandon Tate score a touchdown for the Bengals yesterday? Please advise.

  64. duffer58 says: Oct 31, 2011 2:06 PM

    Bedard is total idiot. He would say the most absurd things in Green Bay. Thank goodness he left.

  65. snarkzilla says: Oct 31, 2011 2:19 PM

    >Do you think the Packers have room for 10 rookies?

    I think that that’s the exact number of rookies that TT added this year, actually. Let some vets go to make room for them. It’s risky. The Packers D would have been better if Cullen Jenkins had been retained, probably. But that’s TT’s way.

  66. snarkzilla says: Oct 31, 2011 2:22 PM

    Wanted to add that if all 10 rookies have played well enough to be starters at any point during the season, then they’ll be starting. GB= culture of competition.

  67. das14 says: Oct 31, 2011 2:23 PM

    I’m sure Belichick would be doing a lot better he’s just focusing on being vibrant and entertaining in his press conferences.

  68. dubaradhandi says: Oct 31, 2011 2:28 PM

    Wow one game every one is talking about bad coach. Agreed he was out coached. But if I need to pick a coach to fix that it would be one and only bill. Pats lost to bills and Pitts both are good team going to win games. The rest of the schedule only eagles will give trouble and pats will go easily 12-4 which will earn them playoff. For spy gate haters he is the most winning coach after spy gate broke. Check your facts. Yesterday NO lost to rams, does it mean the coach is bad. NYG came close to loosing the game to MIA. Both are no win teams. It’s one game and Bill will be looking into this and fix it. Pats are going to run deep in the playoff and the lose comes in the right time for them to make a statement going forward.

  69. robertjamis says: Oct 31, 2011 2:32 PM

    “Not saying you are off base in your remarks, but when you are coaching one of the top teams in football, it means that there arent a lot of holes on your roster. If you have a 53 man roster, and draft 10 players, more than half are going to get cut after training camp. No successful team has enough holes in the roster to need to play 10 rookie starters every week…

    If you can find a team with 10 rookie starters, I will bet that team had a bad record the year before. Do you think the Packers have room for 10 rookies? How about the Steelers, or Saints? Belichick has not been a genius when comes to his drafts in recent years, but there also isnt a whole lot of open roster spots either”

    You’re right to an extent, but the Pats have also accumulated more ammunition to move up than most teams in their position, and rather than do so, they all too often opt to move back.

    Beyond that, you don’t see them develop free agents all that well.

  70. cropslx says: Oct 31, 2011 2:35 PM

    Why do Pats fans always say BB cheating doesn’t matter?!?! If it didn’t help his team he would NOT have done it. Most games are won and lost by 1 or 2 plays anyway. If I remember correctly those Super Bowls were pretty close games that could have been swung in the Pats favor by cheating.

    I am sure the Pats take precautions so other teams don’t get their calls/plays. If it “doesn’t matter” why do they take the precautions?

    I am a Panthers fan, so I hold a grudge.

  71. gooch2011 says: Oct 31, 2011 2:41 PM

    “We’re not sure what team is elite anymore.”

    I can answer that for you…
    Green Bay
    Pittsburgh
    New England
    Maybe New Orleans, this weekend not withstanding…

  72. samoanjungle says: Oct 31, 2011 2:46 PM

    With as good as they were and with all of those extra picks over the last few years you would think he would’ve been stacked on both sides of the ball.

    Also, they obviously didn’t have the luxury to let 2 experienced DBs go so that wasn’t a great move either.

  73. giselleisasucubus says: Oct 31, 2011 2:53 PM

    pardon the typos…..

  74. waltdawg says: Oct 31, 2011 2:54 PM

    This is the part where you ask Haynesworth to step up and he fakes ill and keeps on rolling in the dough. Albert-Are you ready to open an old wound?

  75. westclaims says: Oct 31, 2011 3:00 PM

    Cheats. And, if the Pats fans don’t like hearing that…too bad. They cheated. Otherwise, they aren’t so great It’s that simple. You can stomp your feet and hold your breath, but it’s true. And saying that’s in the past is true. But so was their success.

  76. mike5011ad says: Oct 31, 2011 3:03 PM

    @gooch2011 If you have the 32nd rated defense in the NFL, you can not call yourself elite. When the weather turns in New England, and they can’t pass it 50 times a game, you’re going to need that defense…

  77. sschmiggles says: Oct 31, 2011 3:09 PM

    myspaceyourface says:
    Oct 31, 2011 11:35 AM
    The Patriots poor defense and lack of running game will be the main 2 reasons they don’t compete for a Super Bowl.

    You can’t win the Super Bowl with a strong passing game alone.
    ___________________________________
    Yes, you certainly can in today’s NFL. See the 2009 Saints and 2006 Colts.

    NE was also ranked 8th in rushing before this week. Their offense has been well balanced for over a year now and people still haven’t clued in. They rushed for over a hundred against the #1 ranked rush defense in Dallas.

  78. sschmiggles says: Oct 31, 2011 3:10 PM

    cropslx says:
    Oct 31, 2011 2:35 PM
    Why do Pats fans always say BB cheating doesn’t matter?
    _____________________________

    Because he didn’t cheat, idiot.

  79. giablommi says: Oct 31, 2011 3:13 PM

    “Why do Pats fans always say BB cheating doesn’t matter?!?! ”
    ^^^^^^
    Look up the term “red herring” and you’ll arrive at the answer

  80. sschmiggles says: Oct 31, 2011 3:19 PM

    mike5011ad says:
    Oct 31, 2011 3:03 PM
    @gooch2011 If you have the 32nd rated defense in the NFL, you can not call yourself elite
    ___________________________

    They aren’t rated “32nd in the NFL.” They’re ranked 32nd only in passing yards surrendered. For comparison, Green Bay is ranked 31st in that category.

    The Pats rank 17th by points, which is a far more accurate barometer of overall defense. In that category, San Fran, Baltimore, and Pittsburgh are at the top. Sounds right to me.

    It just works a lot better for a reporter to write “32nd ranked defense” so they can rile up the brainless mob.

    They give up a lot more yards than they do points.

  81. aljack88 says: Oct 31, 2011 3:20 PM

    unbreakable02215 says:
    Oct 31, 2011 1:23 PM
    Makes you wonder if he’s doing exactly as he’s
    being told:

    -Move back in the early rounds in the draft to
    avoid paying higher salaries and find
    “diamonds in the rough” and “coach them up”.
    ___________________________________

    and who would be telling him to do that? Kraft?
    After trying to meddle with Parcels, Kraft knows not to.

  82. cropslx says: Oct 31, 2011 3:31 PM

    face to face

  83. randomcommenter says: Oct 31, 2011 3:34 PM

    remember the media laughing at the raiders over the seymour trade. They all thought it was hilarious that the smart Pats robbed the dumb Raiders.

    That was one of the dumbest trades i’ve ever seen. The pats gave up a hall of fame caliber player, still in his prime, for draft picks. And there were no cap issues that demanded the trade either.

    It was pure arrogance that they didn’t “need” Seymour. Just like they didn’t need Asante Samuel.

    Think you need them now Billy? Of course you don’t.

    I can’t wait for Brady to retire and the Pats to go back to irrelevance.

  84. mike5011ad says: Oct 31, 2011 3:40 PM

    @ gooch2001

    they are 32nd in total yards surrendered per game at 424. A full 20 yds behind the 31st team, Indy. They are 32nd in passing yards allowed per game with 323, a full 35 yards more than the next closest team, Green Bay. Even there scoring Defense 17th in the league, is in the bottom half of the league. That defense is not a good defense, therefore it is not an elite team.

  85. CKL says: Oct 31, 2011 3:55 PM

    Dear Raiders fans,
    I beg you please stop with the smack over the Seymour trade. It’s irrelevant.
    He was never going to be in NE again what he is for your team. He HAD to go one way or the other, he was a disgruntled player in NE for the last 4 or so years he was there, and they weren’t going to give him another big contract like he wanted. He is a good player still, yes, but like Moss in 07 ,( sound familiar?)he needed a change of scenery. Pats D was not better without him, but better to trade him for a 1st rounder that could turn out to be the Pats next LT for the next 10 years then let him walk the next year for at best a 3rd rd compensatory. That trade was good for both parties. The 09 Pats were such a bad team that his presence alone wouldn’t have brought them any more wins than they got.

  86. clevername1 says: Oct 31, 2011 4:53 PM

    rr2000k says:
    Oct 31, 2011 12:12 PM
    I one damn time I root for NE, the lose

    wow

  87. clevername1 says: Oct 31, 2011 5:03 PM

    hooockey says:
    Oct 31, 2011 12:43 PM
    I’ve been waiting for this article for awhile.

    It’s about time, it seems like all the media wants to do is kiss the Hoodie’s rings. And it’s been a few years since he won.

    No doubt Belichick is an incredible coach, probably the best in the NFL.

    BUT, as GM, he is mediocre at best. Always drafting guy in the 2nd or 3rd round who get cut a couple years later. And as the years go by, the defense just gets worse and worse, as Pioli’s players leave / retire, and now almost every defender is a Hoodie pickup now. They have given up the most yards in the NFL ! 424 per game, 24 worse than the pathetic Colts !

    If Belichick was GM back in the day, I seriously doubt he would have drafted Brady.

    The team’s success is now due to Brady / Welker, and the Hoodie’s offensive wizardry, like using 2 young receiving tight-ends, just brilliant.

    But Bill Belichick the GM is making the team overall worse and worse.

    He could learn from observing someone who is actually good at drafting like Mike Brown (Gasp!).

    Pretty spot on and I am a Pats fan. Much better than the retread posts full of envy concerning cheating.

  88. jm9ulose says: Oct 31, 2011 6:33 PM

    Belichick is still a great coach….I just believe he needs some checks and balances on personnel decisions like when he had Pioli. He needs someone to occasionally tell him “NO” when he decides to cut Meriweather, Sanders and Bodden with no viable replacements. The Pats are still a good team despite the loss, but the secondary is especially devoid of talent. Facts are facts. Chung and McCourty are the only true starters back there. Arrington is solid but is better suited as the nickel. BB has also refused to at least attempt to pick a dominant edge rusher for years, passing on the likes of Clay Matthews. We are always a very competitive team even without a good defense, but I’m just bothered by a feeling that we are wasting Brady’s prime. We have an MVP QB and Super Bowl caliber offense, that is kept off the field for close to 40 minutes because the defense continually gives up long clock killing drives. Don’t get me wrong, Pittsburgh’s defense was tough, but it doesn’t change the fact we score more points if we get more possessions. Pittsburgh was smart.

  89. TheWizard says: Oct 31, 2011 9:47 PM

    Wow.

    One loss sure gets the torch and pitchfork gang all pumped up, doesn’t it?

    Let’s just see how the season shakes out.

    I think the Pats will be there, horrible 3rd down D and all…….

  90. legacybroken says: Oct 31, 2011 10:03 PM

    More and more we are seeing the importance of Scott Pioli in the building of those championship caliber teams.

  91. ytsejamer1 says: Oct 31, 2011 10:19 PM

    A lot of good comments…minus the cheating junk.

    Bedard ripped off my line…been saying that for the last couple years. He should be questioned on it and I wish Kraft would do just that.

    There’s no excuse for how bad this defense has become over the years. I personally think that yes, the personnel is lacking. But beyond that, they’ve spent a lot of money and higher end draft picks on that secondary over the years. The beginning of this was when BB was smug enough to think Duane Starks was going to replace Ty Law. Fool.

    Wilfork is a stud and a playmaker. And that’s where it ends. Mayo is an overrated “JAG” who tackles a lot…usually five or ten yards down the field. He makes no plays. In three or four years he has 3.5 sacks, 4 forced fumbles, and ZERO interceptions.

    Not to be forgotten…the DB coaching position has been a revolving door for awhile. No one stays there. The message isn’t being relayed properly AND/or the players aren’t processing it. If it’s either or, both are the fault of Bill Belichick.

    As a Pats fan, I’m frustrated because they’re wasting Brady’s years putting this turd of a defense on the field. Football is the most complimentary game out of most organized sports. You have to be sound in all phases. The offense would be scary if we had an average defense who could give them three or four more possessions per game. I don’t need number 1s at all positions…I want to see competence.

  92. richm2256 says: Oct 31, 2011 11:07 PM

    trubroncfan07 says:
    It’s hard to win games when you don’t know what the other teams plays are going to be. Karma cheaters
    —————————————————————-
    No one in the world is accusing them of cheating this season, yet the Patriots are 5-2 with the world’s worst defense, moron. How do you explain THAT?

    I love you “Belichick is playing with Pioli’s players!” idiots. This is the same Scott Pioli that all of you have been laughing at in KC! So is Pioli a genius or an idiot????

    The NFL has passed Bill Belichick by, you all say. This is the guy who has gone 18-1, 11-5, 10-6, and 14-2 the past four years, and is 5-2 in 2011.

    Your team should be so washed up.

  93. axespray says: Nov 1, 2011 1:06 AM

    gregjennings85 says:Oct 31, 2011 11:51 AM
    “The Hoodie can’t draft to save his life.”

    nah, watch them two TEs that they drafted and how much better they’ve made Brady.

    It’s just that The Hoodie is a cheap skate when it comes to defense, he’s coaching bargain ben defensive players at this point.

    He’s basically that guy on madden that trades away all of his 85+ rated players for rookies with a 73 rating, thinking he’s all that.

  94. gimmeabruschi says: Nov 1, 2011 3:00 AM

    westclaims says: Oct 31, 2011 3:00 PM

    Cheats. And, if the Pats fans don’t like hearing that…too bad. They cheated. Otherwise, they aren’t so great It’s that simple. You can stomp your feet and hold your breath, but it’s true. And saying that’s in the past is true. But so was their success.

    _______________________________

    You can stomp your feet and hold your breath, but the NFL says they didn’t cheat, “no competitive advantage was gained”. And they count – and you don’t.

  95. discosucs2005 says: Nov 1, 2011 6:31 AM

    You know what’s more annoying than Spygate comments? Patriot fans complaining about Spygate comments.

    I’m sure it’s annoying, but the Pats got 3 Super Bowls out of it, so if all you have to lose is a first round pick, and see a bunch of cheating comments online, I’d say you are coming out on top.

  96. bozosforall says: Nov 1, 2011 7:00 PM

    richm2256 says:
    Oct 31, 2011 11:07 PM
    trubroncfan07 says:
    It’s hard to win games when you don’t know what the other teams plays are going to be. Karma cheaters
    —————————————————————-
    No one in the world is accusing them of cheating this season, yet the Patriots are 5-2 with the world’s worst defense, moron. How do you explain THAT?

    I love you “Belichick is playing with Pioli’s players!” idiots. This is the same Scott Pioli that all of you have been laughing at in KC! So is Pioli a genius or an idiot????

    The NFL has passed Bill Belichick by, you all say. This is the guy who has gone 18-1, 11-5, 10-6, and 14-2 the past four years, and is 5-2 in 2011.

    Your team should be so washed up.

    __
    For a fan base that thinks that the Pats should win the Super Bowl every year, all you have seen is abject failure. NO title since the Spygate years means that your team IS basically washed up, particularly given the fact that they haven’t even won a single playoff game since the 2007 season.

  97. tedmurph says: Nov 1, 2011 9:59 PM

    cropslx says:
    Oct 31, 2011 2:35 PM

    I am a Panthers fan, so I hold a grudge.
    —————————————————
    What a shame so many panthers were busted for steroids.

  98. tedmurph says: Nov 1, 2011 10:07 PM

    svcfilmguy says:
    Oct 31, 2011 1:15 PM
    Belichick is a football savant, but this is deserved. Since Pioli left, the personnel decisions have been questionable at best.
    —————————————————
    Take a look @Pioli’s drafts when he was with the Pats. Awful the last few yrs.. How ’bout his drafts w/KC? Trading for Cassell and paying him. Hiring Haley. Hiring Weis, who just used him. Seriously, you just can’t spew BS.

  99. tedmurph says: Nov 1, 2011 10:13 PM

    bozosforall says:
    Nov 1, 2011 7:00 PM

    That’s right, the standard for the Pats is winning the SB every yr. Not going .500, Not getting the wild card. Yup, 31 teams fail every yr. Guess it’s easy to attack. Fans of most teams have more free time on their hands. Not Pats fans.

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