The New England Patriots faced the Cleveland Browns on a cold December afternoon in Foxboro MA in a matchup that the Patriots were expected to win going away. Instead, the Patriots won and lost. In what can only be called a Pyrrhic Victory, the Patriots won the game but lost their most dynamic offensive weapon. After suddenly looking like a Super Bowl competitor after defeating Denver a few weeks ago, the question now is: Can the New England Patriots Make a Playoff Run After Losing Rob Gronkowski?
Good morning Patriots Nation and welcome to another daily dose of MusketFire.com’s “The Patriot Way”.Â Plenty of news on the Patriots to read today as the Gronk injury continues to dominate the news. Â Not to be overshadowed was Tom Brady’s great comeback win to let New England stay ahead of Cincinnati for the first round playoff [&]
After the fourth quarter comeback; after the cool under pressure; after the loss of his top target; after the improbable turnaround scoring two touchdowns in the last 2:39 of the game; it had to be Tom Brady. I tried not to go with the obvious choice. I looked and looked for another worthy winner. Really. There was just no one else who could get the game ball this week for the New England Patriots.
The New England Patriots face-off against the Cleveland Browns at Gillette Stadium in a match-up of two explosive offenses. However, for the Patriots’ offense there have been first half struggles in their last two games against the Denver Broncos and the Houston Texans. With the dangerous Josh Gordon on the other sideline for the Browns, the Patriots need to shake-off their first half hiccups and put their defense in position to play with a lead early against the Browns.
The Patriots offense will need to move the ball consistently and convert scoring opportunities in the red zone against the Cleveland Browns defense.
The Browns defense has been one of the strongest against the run this season ranking fifth in the NFL with only 98.9 yard allowed per game. Against the pass, the team relies on one of the best young cornerbacks in the NFL in Joe Haden. The Browns defense ranks fifth in the NFL against the pass allowing only 207.8 yards allowed per game.
For the Patriots offense there are injury issues at wide receiver: rookies Aaron Dobson and Kenbrell Thompkins are both likely to miss the game against the Browns (or be limited if they play). Both are battling through injuries and the Patriots may be wise to rest both of them this week in order to get both of their young outside receivers healthy before the playoffs start in January.
My quick analysis and recap of the Patriots amazing comeback win over Cleveland:
After talking all week about the need to start the game quickly, the New England Patriots came out at home against the 4-8 Cleveland Browns and were outclassed on both sides of the ball early in the game. Â The Patriots were fortunate to only be down 6-0 at the half as quarterback Tom Brady was [&]
The New England Patriots face the Cleveland Browns on Sunday in Foxboro, MA. The Browns are coming into the game fortunate to have starting quarterback Jason Campbell cleared to play after missing time and being replaced by turnover prone Â Brandon Weeden (who is also Â suffering from concussion symptoms and not able to go on Sunday). [&]
The New England Patriots escaped Houston, TX and their matchup with the Houston Texans by the skin of their teeth last Sunday. This week the Patriots need to be better than that. In fact, they need to show they are ready to act like an elite NFL squad. Simply put, the New England Patriots need to blow-out the Cleveland Brownson Sunday in Foxboro, MA.
Right now, the Cleveland Browns quarterback situation is so bad they’re putting out feelers to Bernie Kosar and Brian Sipe. OK, that may be a bit of hyperbole, but the situation is not good. Their best quarterback on the Browns this season was Patriotscast-off Brian Hoyer who went on the IR early this year with a knee injury. VeteranJason Campbell was adequate, but he is sidelined with a concussion. The default starter was twice-benched Brandon Weeden who may also be out with a concussion.
So who is left to play quarterback in Cleveland if Campbell and Weeden are not cleared to play? Alex Tanney was signed off the Dallas practice squad just last week. Tanney attended Division III Monmouth (Illinois) College and is best known for his YouTube video of trick passes. This week, the team signed former NFL backup Caleb Hanie, who was released by Baltimore in training camp and last threw a pass in an NFL game in 2011.
The Patriots are now under pressure to continue their history of strong December’s with a big game against the banged-up Browns. They cannot afford to let the Browns hang-around and be ahead late in the game like they let a bad Houston Texans team do last week. The Patriots need to act like an elite team and not play down to the competition. They need to jump out to an early lead and convert drive after drive into touchdowns.
The Patriots defense needs to start strong and help the offense get ahead of theBrowns early.
The Cleveland Browns have an opportunity to take a big step forward in their growth as the young squad takes on the perennial AFC powerhouse New England Patriots in Foxboro, MA on Sunday…Check it out here at FirstStopFantasy.com
The New England Patriots have positioned themselves to gain momentum in the final quarter of the season with nine wins and only three losses in the first twelve games of the season. In light of all the distractions (Wes Welker, Aaron Hernandez, and Tim Tebow) and injuries (Rob Gronkowski, Shane Vereen, Danny Amendola, Vince Wilfork, Tommy Kelly, Jerod Mayo, Sebastian Vollmer, and Steve Gregory) earlier in the season, this is a great accomplishment by the team.
As the offense slowly returned injured receivers and integrated the young receivers on the roster, the offense improved week-by-week as quarterback Tom Bradygained trust and rapport with his teammates. With the offensive line continuing to improve in pass blocking after some early hiccups, the team is looking ready to grab one of the top two spots in the AFC, earn a bye week, and have a home game in the divisional round.
However, there is a major concern on offense that will derail them again in the post-season if it is not corrected in the next four weeks: running back Stevan Ridley and his fumbling issues….click the link for much more!
The New England Patriots faced-off on the road against the Houston Texans on Sunday afternoon and were fortunate to escape with a 34-31 victory. With New England three games ahead of the Miami Dolphins in the AFC East standings and a game in hand over the Cincinnati Bengals and Indianapolis Colts for the first round bye…click the link for much more!