New England Patriots and Areas of Concern

In no particular order...

Less concerned now than last week:

Safeties.  James Ihedigbo(44) was a very solid step over either Josh Barrett or Sergio Brown.  Great instincts, can tackle, excellent blitzer.  Saw few flaws in his performance.  It'd be mind-boggling if he does not get the start vs. the Cowboys.

Corners:  Devin McCourty had his quietest and therefore best game of the year.  Leigh Bodden is looking better now that he's rested.   But how much of this was because of Mark Sanchez's flaws?  We'll see vs. Romo.

Tom Brady: Had a better game against the Jets than he did against Oakland.   Being at home helps, I guess.

More concerned now than last week:

Linebackers, namely Gary Guyton and Brandon Spikes:  I have never been big on Gary Guyton and he really did not do the greatest job at MIKE.  Brandon Spikes clearly needs more reps.   Dane Fletcher is more deserving of the inside-linebacker spot and the green dot on his helmet.  Guyton doesn't have the same speed he had at the combine years ago.

Left Defensive End, namely Shaun Ellis:  He hasn't been a factor in either stopping the run game or stopping the pass game.   Perhaps he needs more time in the 4-3 or the byeweek to heal up but he seems a step slower than we can afford.

Chad Ochocinco:  He's the 3rd WR for an offense that uses far fewer 3-WR sets than a lot of other teams.   I always thought he was more of an insurance policy incase Branch or Welker got injured rather than a guy vying for the #1 or #2 spot.  However, he has been showing a tendency to make mental errors.  Offsides, and at one point we burned a timeout to avoid a penalty for his taking a bad formaton.

Most impressed by;

Andre Carter once again.  He's suppose to be a beast against the pass game but he's also a beast against the run game.   PFF rightfully speculated that he might have been the best defender we had on the field.  Despite his size he plays like he could do either RDE or even LDE.

Brian Waters once again.  Either he or Andre Carter have thus far proven to be the best free-agent transactions that we've made.  He's been a beast in the run-game and has brought a lot to the right side of our defensive line.  PFF has him ranked high for right-guards, which is all the more impressive because he was a left-guard for almost his entire career before coming to New England.tool.

The views expressed in these FanPosts are not necessarily those of the writers or SBNation.

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