2012 Patriots Roster Prediction: Doug Kyed 1.0

DT/DE: Vince Wilfork, Kyle Love, Jonathan Fanene, Brandon Deaderick, Myron Pryor

Pryor has to get healthy to beat out a good player in Gerard Warren, but Pryor’s upside gives him the nudge in my prediction.

I wasn’t overly impressed with Ron Brace, as I never have been, and at this point he seems like an obvious cut with so many other good players. It was great to see Wilfork play so many snaps last season, but with the above crop, Wilfork should be getting some much needed rest more often this season.

DE/OLB/Elephant: Rob Ninkovich, Trevor Scott, Chandler Jones, Jermaine Cunningham, Jake Bequette

With Wilfork and Love potentially coming out more often on obvious passing downs this season, that will give players like Deaderick and Fanene a chance to play DT and free up the DE positions to smaller faster players like Scott, Jones and Cunningham.

I went in with very low expectations for Cunningham after his Houdini act last season, but he looked impressive from what I saw, and it also looks like he’ll be given every opportunity to make the team and contribute this year.

Jones looked better in a Patriots uniform than he did last season with the Orangemen. He looked like he might have bulked up a little and looked surprisingly comfortable on his feet.

LB: Jerod Mayo, Brandon Spikes, Dont’a Hightower, Bobby Carpenter, Dane Fletcher, Jeff Tarpinian

What was a shallow and weaker unit in the Patriots defense last year looks much improved already in 2012. Hightower will bring an entirely new energy to this team that is sometimes missing in the dependable but at times unspectacular Mayo.

It will be fun to see Hightower and Spikes on the field at the same time this season as they’re both thumpers who can work their way through a line of scrimmage. I’ll likely be referring to them as the bash brothers all season.

Carpenter already looks comfortable in Belichick’s defense and could be a great pickup for depth. He sure already looked better than Gary Guyton and could really specialize in pass coverage.

CB:Devin McCourty, Kyle Arrington, Ras-I Dowling, Sterling Moore, Will Allen, Alfonzo Dennard

The Patriots were practicing almost exclusively in sub packages, which utilizes McCourty, Arrington and Dowling all as starting cornerbacks. All three’s heels will be nipped all preseason by impressive second year player Sterling Moore who looks poised to be able to contribute in the slot or split out wide.

McCourty obviously struggled big time last season, if those struggles continue, we could see a breakout year from Moore. Dennard was out with a hamstring injury and will have to get healthy if he hopes to make the 53 man roster as a 7th round pick.

S: Patrick Chung, Steve Gregory, Tavon Wilson

James Ihedigbo might have been my toughest cut in this roster prediction, it’s not that I think he’s one of the 53 best players on this team, but the Patriots still lack depth at safety. Luckily, McCourty, Allen or Moore could all contribute at safety if given the opportunity.

I wasn’t overly impressed with Steve Gregory, not that I expected to be. He got burned deep on one particular play where he took a shark sized bite on a play action fake. Hopefully Wilson can step up this preseason and take that starting role from Gregory.

ST: Stephen Gostowski, Zoltan Mesko, Danny Aiken

Though Chris Koepplin didn’t look half bad, I don’t expect Gostkowski to lose his spot on the roster.

Overall, the depth on the roster is striking to me, especially at WR, DT, elephant and LB. It’s tough to tell who the worst player on this team would be if this were the opening week roster. The Patriots did a great job filling glaring needs this offseason.

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7 Responses to “2012 Patriots Roster Prediction: Doug Kyed 1.0”

  1. dave2323 says:

    As I’ve said before, the work you do-the sox prospects of football is so much better in depth and quality than any of the msm press that covers the pats. It’s a lot better and we really really really really appreciate and love what you do.

    This is great, and keep it coming. It would be helpful if you also listed

    -Trade Candidates.

    -Who the 54,55,56 ect men or “just missed/last cuts” are the way you did ranking the team coming into training camp.

    -Shockers-surprise players that could be cut

    -Made a note on dealing for draft picks. They only have 5 picks and if they have the kind of depth you say they have, and given how many guys they cut last year ended up on other teams, it sounds like some of these guys-brace, mcdonald et al could be worth a 6th round pick to some teams the way this kid brian price was and jeff otah was.

  2. RobDX says:

    Terrible. No way they keep only 5 WR. Where is the backup if someone on the outside goes down. They keep Vishathe too, and keep ZERO FBs.

  3. Rick says:

    Five solid lineman and T Brady should line up with any five of:

    TE: Gronk, Hernandez, Fells, Shiancoe, Cannon, Solder, Mallet?
    WR: Lloyd, Welker, Gaffney, Edelman, Hernandez, Vereen?
    RB: Ridley, Vereen, Woodhead, Bolden, Hernandez, Edelman?

    Good luck: Texans (No Mario), Ravens (No Suggs) and Niners!!

  4. cash says:

    I think this could be a breakout year for deadrick. He played so well at the end of last season. even after missing the begginging on the PUP list. See him being Bobby Hamilton like. Myron Pryor has always impressed me but has been injury prone. I like him when hes on the field. Brace is just terrible and needs to go, I questioned that pick when he got drafted. It seemed like BJ Raji made it him look a lot better.
    Im kind of worried about Vereen. If the injury reports were true about him last year then fine, I’ll give him a pass. But I always here the running back is one of the easier posistions to come in and play, and he barely did. Obviously they have to master blocking and catching passes out of the backfield to be a full timer, but just running in the whole is something you either get it or you dont.

  5. Tim says:

    Pryor over Warren? Not gonna happen

  6. Stephen S says:

    I see Justin Francis didnt make it any Practice Squad Predictions. Great Post.

  7. qwerty says:

    Based upon the past history of the player and multiple camp reports from different sources, this roster prediction is spot on.

    Of course, there will be injuries so this is the only thing left that we will need to see how it all falls out.

    Brace can make it on if an injury occurs. Brace’s major negative is that he has been injury prone. Brace played well enough in games to keep him.

    Lot of talent. Of course, there is a lot more parity among nfl teams who also have a lot of talent also.

    Having Hightower and Spike on the field the same time should really add a magnitude of intensity to the Patriot defense. Patriots offense should be off the charts.

    Safety seems to be the only area of concern. Since McCourty can play Safety also, this should help mitigate concern.

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