The theme of this Patriots season runs through my head like the Supertramp classic Take the Long Way Home. At times this year the Pats were â€œThe Joke of the neighborhoodâ€ infighting – backbiting – unfocused – uncommitted – too old – too slow – no playmakers – canâ€™t win on the road – no chance. Losers of back to back games not once but twice – age had caught up to Brady. A noodle arm who had lost his nerve in the pocket. Were the lyrics to this season.
It took a bit longer this year to find the right beat to this song then a bit longer to get the band to all play in the same key. While local and National media types sang their decades old tune â€œThe end of the Dynastyâ€. Patriots nation all waited patiently for this band to take the stage.
.â€ And when youâ€™re up on the stage, it’s so unbelievable,
Oh unforgettable, how they adore you,â€
Well here they are again. For the Ninth time, Tom and Bill have lead this team to the Superbowl. Here are my Monster keys to â€œBringing this Sucker Homeâ€. Home to Foxboro.
Sean Mcvay knows his quarterbacks liabilities and does his utmost to cover them up. One of the things he does is talk into Goffâ€™s ear for as long as he can. Right up to the last 15 seconds of any play. The Patriots need to show a ton of pre snap movement on the defensive side of the ball before getting into their true intentions. Make Goff have to think, donâ€™t let Mcvay run the show from the sidelines.
Shut down Anderson and Gurley
Tall task I know. Whatever happened in the Superdome is a lifetime ago. I don’t know why McVay had one of the, if not the the best, weapons in the NFL riding a bike on the sideline, game flow? yea okay. Injury? More likely. But he has had two weeks to heal up and Sean will find a way to make this weapon work on Sunday.
Zone Blocking is the Key to this Rams rushing attack no matter what front Bill and Flow utilize that will leave a heavy burden on the D-Line to win their battles up front and allow the Linebackers to fill gaps and make plays. The flow of the backfield and the O-Lines flow should show VanNoy and Hightower the way to the play. Pullers will also tip the boys as to McVay’s thinking. Gap integrity is paramount to keeping Anderson from going off inside. Keep Gurley from getting to that edge. Make this team one dimensional.
Win The Turnover Battle.
The Pats came damn close to not being here this week because they didn’t take care of the ball, They played stupid. Balls bouncing off receivers hands has been an issue all year not just in the AFC Title Game. Take care of your own business and wait for Goff to make mistakes – He will .
WHAT ? SLING IT MURPH ? Yes sling it, you heard me right. Iâ€™ve given this a lot of thought. Maybe too much, But I want Brady to come out slinging. The Rams will be dead set on stopping the run to start this game â€¦ Okay go ahead. If they want to go heavy let them. Show 21-22 even 23 personnel then get into motion, Tom will use Edelman – Hogan and White on slants screens and crossers to move the chains. Force the Rams to go plan B and C then Pound the Rock and chew up yardage with Sony and company.
Exhaust Every Option
No, I don’t mean pull out all the cutesy plays – Josh loves so much. I want the Rams D exhausted and huffing oxygen after every Patriotâ€™s score. The strength to this D is the front the line. Now Iâ€™m not saying don’t use the clock to your advantage Mix up the tempo. but don’t let the Fat guys breathe.
Own the Red-Zone
I want the Pats to not settle for a three all night .
Expect the Unexpected.
Rams special teams coach John Fassel loves his job. I hate that in an opposing ST coach. He likes to dial up plays at any time in the game and from anyplace on the field. The Patriots specials unit needs to be ready. When you least expect it – expect it .
Thats it my Rabid readers. The final keys to the season cut and on the ring. Will Bill Tom Josh and Co turn them? I think soâ€¦.. Itâ€™s been one hell of a journey. A journey that began on the last day of last season. I want to thank you all for taking this trip with me.
Take the Long way Home
Take The Long Way Home
Take The Long Way home