New England Patriots Links 10/12/10 - The New Deion Branch Era Kicks Off Ravens Week

Tom Brady responds to a question on WEEI this morning on if we are going to notice a difference in the way the offense runs ... a rhythm kind of offense that we've seen in the past, without Randy there.

I don’t know. The truth is, I don’t know. I’d love to have an offense that controls the tempo of the game and controls the clock by running it. You have these certainly high-percentage passes with the different players that we have. I think we still have some explosive players in the passing game. I don’t think there’s any doubt about that.

Whether it’s Brandon Tate, I mean, you’ve seen what he can do on kickoff returns. His ability to make that more of a threat on offense is something that, as a second-year player, of course he’s trying to do. Aaron Hernandez, I mean, he’s had the biggest pass plays all season for this team. Adding a guy like Deion [Branch], I mean, Deion has caught a lot of deep balls in his career.

So, there’s a lot of guys that have that explosive ability in the passing game. Obviously, you’ve got to get Wes down the field. You’ve got to get [Rob] Gronkowski down the field. You see what kind of plays he can make. So, there’s obviously a lot of guys that can do different things — short, intermediate, deep in the passing game. And that’s what you need as a good offense. You need multiple threats. You need guys that can do multiple things. So, I think that’s the goal of our offense.

Christopher Price discusses what the Patriots can expect from Deion Branch, who has dealt with his share of injuries but has been a dependable presence this year for Seattle.

According to Brian McIntyre of "Mac’s Football Blog," he was in on 83 percent (186 of the 224 offensive snaps) of the Seahawks’ offensive plays this season, and had 13 catches for 112 yards and a touchdown through four games this year. That, combined with his pre-existing knowledge of the New England’s intricate passing game, should allow him to step in and contribute immediately to the Patriots’ offense.

While his presence will cut into the playing time of some of New England’s younger receivers (namely Tate and Price), it buys some time for the Patriots’ younger receivers to continue to develop within the system. What he isn’t is a deep threat in the mold of Moss: His yards per catch average has steadily declined the last three-plus years, going from 13.7 in 2008 to 8.6 this season. (His career-high was 14.1 with the Patriots in 2003.)

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