Patriots vs Raiders: The Aftermath

NEPD Staff Writer: Doug Kyed

In a win that presented more questions than answers, especially with injuries and the defense, the Patriots offense was able to secure a victory over the Oakland Raiders.

That really didn’t feel like a 31-20 victory, did it? The Patriots won and actually played a pretty good game, but I’d almost say the Raiders beat themselves more than anything.

Here are some quick hit thoughts on the game:

DEFENSE

-Let’s all hope Jerod Mayo isn’t out for the season, this team won’t survive if Gary Guyton is expected to fill in for him as an every down player.
-The Patriots did a great job stopping the run. They dared the Raiders to pass and Jason Campbell beat himself. From the second half forward, the Patriots defense played a great game.
-Patrick Chung’s interception couldn’t have been easier, but it was still impressive with the big cast on his thumb. Chung made a big difference in this game. The Pats defense looked a lot better with him back.
-Great pick by Vince Wilfork, it’s great when he shows off his athleticism for his 325 lb frame.
-A lot of people will complain about the lack of pressure, but once again, when the goal was to stop the run, you’re not going to blitz heavily. I’d save the blitzes for the Jets. Still, only getting three QB hits and 0 sacks is really poor even for constant four man rush.
-The New England secondary, especially McCourty, did a nice job staying with the Raiders speedy WRs. They’re not good WRs, but they are speedy and constantly having a safety over the top limited their biggest asset. This secondary will look a lot better after Dowling and Bodden are back. Don’t look at the 300 yards Campbell threw, look at the score.
-I liked finally seeing Dane Fletcher and Jermaine Cunningham get some significant playing time late in the game. I’d like to see Mark Anderson in more next.

OFFENSE

-The o-line continues to protect Brady well, even without Vollmer in. Brady also does a nice job of making them look better by evading pressure so well.
-Ridley continues to show what an asset he is in the offense. Don’t expect to see 20 carries from him, but he might lead the team in carries from here on out.
-I worry a little bit about how dependent Brady has been on Welker lately. Gronk seemed to struggle a little bit today, but Brady needs another dependable target. Welker has been amazing this season.
-Deion Branch has had a terrible time getting open the last two games, I hope that Ochocinco and Taylor Price get some looks if that continues
-The lack of Hernandez continues to take the no huddle out of the game for New England. Expect to see this Patriots offense back to being super charged when he comes back.
-Ochocinco still hasn’t had his breakout game, but at this point he is a nice piece to have. I’d expect to see him a lot against the Jets.

Overall, the Patriots did a really nice job of stopping a very dangerous player in Darren McFadden. This team will only keep getting better the better the defense gets. There were a lot of new pieces to put in place and not a lot of time to set them up. Expect to see Shaun Ellis and Gary Guyton get less playing time as the season progresses. Andre Carter also hasn’t been very impressive, it might be time to see some new looks along the front seven.

Most importantly, the offense wasn’t meshing like they’ve showed all season and the defense showed this team can still win if we’re not putting up 500 yards of offense.

I’ll have more thoughts tomorrow in my keys to victory column.

Tags: Aftermath, Game Recap

21 Responses to “Patriots vs Raiders: The Aftermath”

  1. TD says:

    McCourty looked better, but Arrington looked lost to me as does Sergio Brown.

    Not sure what Haynesworth has shown at practice, but he has shown little so far, that is when he gets on the field. I think BB was counting heavily on him, Prior and Wright to bring pressure up the middle.

  2. Lundahl says:

    Well, yes, the Raiders can’t of shot themselves in the foot. Surprised ? No. Not in my case. Let’s just say, the reason is…. Jason Can’tball. He’s just a disgusting first round bust. I don’t care about his 350 passing yards against us, this guy lacks crucial awareness and lucidity. Didn’t call a single audible to confuse the defense.

    Our defense was so banged up this week and during the game, but our guys on the field actually made plays and tackles. Kind of hard without Dowling. He’s one of those rookies that BB throws in there and contributes right away. Is he a McCourty. Right now, no, because he got injured. But it’ll make our secondary allot more easier when Dowling is back. Although I have a feeling Arrington has the edge over Bodden in the slot.

    When Wright comes back (please !), we can finally get into a real 4-3 rotation and guys can get into better techniques to force the quarterback to make mistakes.

    The main goal was to limit Mcfadden to reasonable yards and make Can’tball throw the ball. They did so.

    Number 85 not getting the system ? I don’t quite understand, he got in NE and a week later the medias speculated that he’d be gone during training camp. You want the guy to be productive ? Just give him a slant or a short out route for the while. He can’t play football ? He kept us interested in the worst franchise ever ! Six time pro bowler, 66 TDs, a beast. My support to Chad.

  3. Ryan says:

    I guess when I look at these other teams, the one area we have really fallen behind is the developement of LB’s. While I wouldn’t say that our LB core is terrible. I just feel like these other teams have done a much better job of gathering talent in that area, and stockpiling than we have. Granted we have Cunningham, Spikes, Mayo, Fletcher and Ninko some younger LB’s. Many of them seem like either a Cover LB or a run stopping LB. It would be nice to have a few more tweeners. It may have disguise what we are dong defensively. I know that if I was playing the Patriots and I saw Guyton on the field I would run right at him, and if I saw Spikes I’d play-action all day.

  4. TomDickHarry says:

    Revis does get away with a ton of illegal contact, constantly pulling on the jersey and equipment, very sneaky about it but pretty clear if you’re watching his hands…definitely makes it harder to beat an already great CB.

  5. Bill says:

    Mayo’s injury is not a negative for the Pat’s from a playoff point of view. He will be back on the field in several weeks and until then other players will gain valuable playing experience because of his injury. And that will make the Pat’s a better playoff team…if they make the playoffs.

    Solder has gained playing experience because of Vollmer’s injury and Solder may now be a better player than Vollmer.

    Besides, Ridley is now a better player than many of the 1st round picks in the 2011 draft. And Dowling may be a better player than many of the 1st round picks in the 2011 draft.

    So, the Pat’s have recovered from last weeks meltdown. And the team now enters week five with more positive news than negative news.

  6. D. T. says:

    To some extent, refs give Revis a pass on his physicality because he’s so good. They penalize Cromartie quite a bit though so I think it evens out.

    The NFL protects its stars and Revis has reached that level at this point.

    I’m really hoping Shaun Ellis and Ihedigbo collect sacks this coming Sunday. I want to see Haynesworth unleashed. In some ways, the Jets’ receiver revamp has played into our hands. Mason is slow and can be covered by Bodden. McCourty with safety help can cover Holmes. Burress can be covered by Dowling. And Chung is good enough to cover Keller. If only they alll will be healthy. I’m very worried about Mayo and hope Fletcher (who’s a beast) will see more time and not Guyton.

    Spikes is great against the run. What has happened to Cunningham?

    • qwerty says:

      i think with all the veteran talent they brought in, cunningham just got pushed down the chart. victim of circumstances.

      lot of pressure on jets to win given they got two straight losses.

      although a loss to another division opponent ny patriots could hurt patriots if season comes down to wildcard

      they play NY teams 3 out of next 5 games.

  7. TD says:

    I think BB may be turning the corner on running the ball more. He has said that you don’t know what kind of team you have until 4-5 weeks into the season.

    He knows what kind of QB he has and I think that was why the large disparity between pass vs run the first 3 weeks. We should be able to run very effectively vs the Jets.

    On another note, I don’t recall seeing DB’s able to grab WR’s as much as the Jets did vs Balt yesterday. Revis was grabbing jersey and slapping Torrey Smith’s hands on almost every pass, especially the longer one’s.

  8. Ryan says:

    I did not get to see the game. But I think this year should be deemed the year of the Offensive Line. Teams with strong offensive lines seem to be doing much better, regardless of how stout their Defense is. Two of the best examples being: Jets without Mangold, and Steelers. I think our defense will improve I think its fully important that we keep our OL healthy.

    My other impression from the last few weeks is that teems seem to be running the ball more. If Ridley runs like he did this weekend against Oakland when we play the Jets they could be in trouble. Rice and R. Williams ran wild, I’m not sure the Ravens passed more than a few times the whole second half.

  9. qwerty says:

    >I’d almost say the Raiders beat themselves more than anything.

    pretty much sums up the game for me

    • TomDickHarry says:

      True to some degree, however Campbell doesn’t throw that pick if he’s got anyone open…..especially considering how long he had to throw the ball….DB’s earned that “freebie”.

      • qwerty says:

        not really. he just had to throw ball away

        • TomDickHarry says:

          yet he didn’t, again, had someone been open or working the back of the end-zone, there’s no chance for an INT….it looked as though one WR was making a move to that part of the end-zone and Campbell anticipated as much….and when the WR stopped short Campbell had already made his mind up….hence the DB’s earned that “freebie” by maintaining good coverage for 5+seconds.

        • qwerty says:

          also if someone in stand threw a pineapple at chung, there likely would have been no INT

          also if a UFO appeared and abducted Chung, there likely would have been no INT

          :-)

  10. John says:

    great game great right up, mccourty looked much better in zone and i thik bodden is a much better zone corner too also ras-i had great insticts in zone when i evaluated him i think if switch the front 7 up a bit and stick with more zone this pass d will really improve. Also spikes played a great game today

    • TomDickHarry says:

      I really like Dowling in what little we’ve seen thus far, gotta keep injuries to a minimum though for his impact to be maximized.

      Spikes is thankfully out of the dog house, his presence in the run game is undeniable, he’ll have to step up big in order to diminish the effect of Mayo’s injury.

      Chung is a stud, easy INT today but well deserved, tough, smart and quickly becoming a leader by getting it done on the field.

      • qwerty says:

        let’s have spike and fletcher as ILB

        • TomDickHarry says:

          Agreed, Guyton is very up and down, great athlete but not overly instinctive or stout, probably why he doesn’t get a ton of looks at OLB anymore….can’t hold the POA and the athleticism doesn’t translate into solid coverage ability….also had way too much depth on that rush-TD instead of crashing in off the of the down-blocking OT.






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