Patriots Roundtable: Week 2 -Post Brady Panic

Another week, another round table of opinions and insight from our insiders and contributors. With the loss of Tom Brady, the questions were all about staving off panic and what the future holds.

1) Should Patriots Fans Panic Now That Brady's Season Is Over?

Kevin Saleeba: The Patriots fans should panic, because I am panicing. The thought of watching Matt Cassel and not Tom Brady at the helm this season is probably the worst thing that could have happened to the team. They are not going to the Super Bowl with Cassel. They'd be lucky to make the playoffs.

LoVell Parkman: I have always said the Patriots will go no where without Brady. However panic is not what should happen now. The skill players should step up and maybe the OL can give Cassel some time to throw. Maybe. Let’s see how the Patriots play over the next two weeks heading into the bye week.

Shane Leketa: Yes, they should. Not how you might think though .. this may actually cause another quarterback controversy. I don't think that Bill is gonna put Cassell in any position to fail. If Cassell can be error free, then when Brady comes back, we will see.
Different train of thought don't you think?

Jim Poore: There was a crisis, but I am not sure the fans will panic. They still have faith in their beloved Bill Belichick, and they think he will find a way to get it done. And I don't care how much Matt Cassell knows the system, he is not a good quarterback. Belichick will have to work a borderline miracle here.

Jon Scott: I'm not sure panic is the right word for what Pats fans should be doing, but they need to temper their expectations. Matt Cassel can play, we've all seen that, but he still has to prove he can handle all the blitzes, unusual alignments and unique adjustments teams make to disrupt him. He hasn't done that yet, and there will be growing pains.


2) Were You Surprised At The Reaction From Other Team's Fans & Media (NY) Cheering Brady's Injury?

Kevin Saleeba: I'm not surprised. NFL fans hate the Patriots, especially New York fans. Now their teams have a better chance to win.

LoVell Parkman: No, they hate the Patriots. A lot of fans acted with class, but there are always the few (and a few media aka newspaper) who act classless and it shows.

Shane Leketa: No I wasn't. Fans and media have something against the winning franchises. They feel like they have to bring the dynasties to a screaching halt. So it came of no surprise to me at all.

Jim Poore: I wasn't really surprised. Fans of other teams and media outlets for those fans hate the Patriots, so they were thrilled that he got hurt. I don't agree with it though. It is never good to see anybody get injured, especially an injury as serious as Brady's. I didn't like it when the fans cheered when Drew Bledsoe got hurt. And I don't like it here either or in any case.

Jon Scott: I've been to the city often, and live close enough to realize it's the norm for some of those media outlets, and their fans. I love New York, but I could do without the cheering for a season-ending injury to anyone. On Monday I was surprised at the number of people openly gleeful that Brady was hurt. The "Cheater" stigma from last year's videotaping scandal is still very much an issue for opposing fans -- and that has never been more true than the Jets fans.


3) Who looked better, Laurence Maroney or Sammy Morris? and
Do you expect to see more of morris as the season progresses?

Kevin Saleeba: Aside from his poor block on Pollard, I thought Morris ran better. Maroney continues to dance around the line of scrimmage. He did break one long run, but Morris gain tougher yards. Morris just seems to hit the holes with power and speed.

LoVell Parkman: Morris looked better. He ran hard and with purpose. Morris was not auditioning for Dancing with the Stars (unlike another Patriot running back).

Shane Leketa: I will tell you that I think this is exactly how we started last season. Now, barring any injuries, this should be a great one-two punch in the backfield .. I think in game one they each had just over 50 yards rushing and the balance should be there all year ... it could be exciting for this tandem.

Jim Poore: I think Sammy Morris will get more playing time assuming he stays healthy. I think he looked better, and I am not sold on Moroney and I never was. I am not so sure the Patriots brass is all that confident in him either, but time will tell as the season progresses.

Jon Scott: I think Morris runs more consistently than Maroney, although Maroney brings the home run threat lacking in Sammy. Morris will probably be in the lineup more often, ironically because the team needs to protect their quarterback more with Cassel under center. Morris is a better blocker, and reliable short yardage back. We'll probably see a lot more of him.


4) Are You Concerned About The Defense?

Kevin Saleeba: I'm not concerned about the defense. All in all, they were tough against Larry Johnson, holding him to 70-plus yards and they made the plays at the end of the game to win. Just wish they did that in the Super Bowl.

LoVell Parkman: Yes. More than ever they will be counted on to step it up and keep the Patriots in the game.

Shane Leketa: No. I think the addition of Deltha Oneal and the maturing process of Jarod Mayo, this defense will only get better throughout the year ... and dont think the Patriots may pull the trigger and get Lynch back.

Jim Poore: The defense is always going to be a concern, especially the backfield. I think it will be interesting when they play a good passing team and see how they hold up. The linebackers are still good, but there is a lot of tread on most of the tires. Belichick as always though will find a way to make it work, but they are going to need the defense more than ever this year.

Jon Scott: I think the defense needs time to get on the same page, especially having two rookies and two new players to the team this year in the secondary. Deltha O'Neal looks to be another steal for the Patriots, while Lewis Sanders has remained a consistent performer since arriving via free agency. What concerns me is third down defense, which has been downright horrible since the preseason.


5) Who Will Win The Jets Game And Why?

Kevin Saleeba: I think Brett Farve and the Jets will bring more offense next week than the Cassel and the Pats. Jets by 14 points. I hope I'm wrong. I hate the J-E-T-S, JETS! JETS! JETS!

LoVell Parkman: Patriots. They just seem to over come adversity and with all of the hate the New York fans and media have shown, they will come up with a chip on their shoulder to prove they are still the team to beat.

Shane Leketa: I think this one is going to be a nailbiter but if I have to give the nod, I will give it to the Jets. Here are the reasons why, Brett Favre and the Meadowlands. These fans and the Jets team are frothing at the mouth to take down the hobbling Pats. I look for a very close game 24-21 Jets.

Jim Poore: I think the Jets CAN win, but I don't think they will. I think they are going to be over confident with Brady being out, but the Patriots are still, as we all know, a very good team. Brett Favre never impressed me, and he probably won't Sunday. I won't be shocked at a Jets win, but I don't see it.

Jon Scott: When I reviewed the Jets and the Patriots games from last week I saw more reliable play from New England than New York. I was surprised that the Dolphins were only one play away from winning the game after getting a new quarterback. That leads me to believe the Patriots escape from New York with a close win (within one score).

 

The Patriots Insider roundtable consists of a group of longtime contributors to the website. We will host roundtable discussions on the boards at PatriotsInsider.com, on the Patriots Insider Radio show, and through these roundtable Q&A articles. If you have a question you would like the group to address, be sure to send it in HERE: Email Patriots Insider We will choose a number of fan questions to answer in each roundtable.

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