A quick recap of the Patriots Season to date, with pictures for those who do not like to read too much.
Week 1: The Patriots thunder out to a convincingly dominant 31-3 halftime lead, take the foot off the petal in the 2nd half and coast to a NFL eye opener style W.
The seeming collective thought of fans and NFL experts was:
Week 2: Again the Patriots come out strong dominating the early stage of the game however they are not able to stake a lead until the final minutes of the half. In the 2nd half the wheels seemingly come off the offense and the young defense is forced into far too many must stops this early in the season.
Seemingly collective thought of fans:
To me the reality for the pats in 2010 is somewhere in between.
They have the ability to be a dominate team, but have the youth and in experience that will prevent them from perfect execution in every situation or game. It's going to be a lot more frustrating then week 1 led us to believe, but this is a team that will get better over time
This fan's prognosis:
(Don't stop me I'm on a roll)
What have we seen so far in 2010?
Tom Brady appears to be healthy, in control and very passionate about this team. He is spreading the ball around again (for 7 or 8 Qs)
Wes has return and has been productive, the young TEs look great and Brandon Tate is contributing.
Brace, Cunningham, Spikes, Butler, McCourty, Chung, Pryor, the young talent new to the defense is playing serious minutes. Granted they are not winning every battle:
I would give the defense until week 8 or 10 before I really expect to see it potentially clicking on all cylinders. Lot of personnel changes and a lot of young players.
Offensively I think week 2 happened at the right time, it was a good warning shot across the bow that better game plans and execution are needed, wrinkles need to be added and developed so half time adjustments can not shut down the offense so effectively.
Realistically I see 9 games that will be tough for the Pats, 5 that should be clear winners. If you say the Pats will win more close games then they lose take 5 of the 9 tougher games and the Pats can be 11-5.
Right now I set that as the base line for this team moving forward, 11-5. That can do a lot to help or hurt themselves from this record but provided what we've seen in weeks 1 and 2, I believe it's possible.
Sure you might ask, why not just say 10 it's a popular number. Well not for this team this team: