With Camp finally upon us, I felt it was important to revisit my original roster projections before the Pats face off against the Eagles in week 1 of the Pre-Season schedule.
-Still no room for Tebow, Sorry.
- I expect the patriots to have a deadly 3-headed rushing attack with Ridley, Vereen, and Bolden. Washington should be used solely on special teams, though he will get in game looks on offense. George Winn could surprise us all, and beat out both Bolden and Blount for the power back spot. The talent is there, Winn just needs to show he can produce at the next level.
-To my suprise, Lavelle Hawkins was cut from the team this week. From the original group of players that i expected to compete for a spot on the team (Donald Jones, Lavelle Hawkins, Kenbrell Thompkins), Thompkins is the only one standing. He has been a standout in camp so far, and has earned his first team reps. I have jumped on the Thompkins bandwagon, and I hope he finds success in the NFL. Kamar Aiken is the sleeper to watch at this position, he has a year in the system and has shown up in camp so far. Through the Preseason games, expect to see a Thompkins-Aiken competition that could last until the final cuts.
-I am still optimistic about Gronkowski's recovery, but at this point it might be best to let him recover fully and return week 6. The decision will be a factor of Gronkowski's health, and how the back up TE's perform during the Pre-Season. If Gronk begins the season on the 53-Man Roster, Ford will likely be preparing for a spot on the practice squad.
-It's very surprising Nick McDonald was cut. He and Donald Thomas were both equally valuable last year in reserve rolls, but it was Donald Thomas who got more recognition for his work. At this point Tyrone Green and Markus Zusevics are the leading candidates to replace McDonald. With a year of experience in the Patriots program, and the versatility to play both guard and tackle at a decent level, I chose Zusevics to fill McDonalds spot. This choice is in spite of reports that it has been Tyrone Green starting at right guard at camp in wake of Cannon's recent absence.
-Hype is a powerful thing, and Marcus Bernard has that on his side. He could find a niche as a situational pass rusher and be very successful this season, but he will have to make the roster first.
-With Armond Armstead recovering from surgery, it may be best to stick him on the PUP. A timetable for his return has not been set, so unless he is able to get on the field soon Armstead may not be mentally or physically ready for the start of the season. Armstead's absence not only paves the way for Marcus Forston to make an impact, but also gives Jermaine Cunningham a last chance to carve out a niche as an interior pass rusher.
-Nothing surprises in the rock solid LB group. This one of the deepest position groups on the roster. Mayo, Hightower, and Spikes are thumpers in the run game, but Collins, Fletcher, and Beauharnais add value in the pass game.
-Ras-I needs to stay healthy, Arrington needs to stay in the slot, Dennard needs to keep his nose clean, Ryan needs to play to his strengths in the run game, and Talib needs to lead the way. If these corners can stay on the field and play with chemistry, there is no telling what they could accomplish.
-I went with Ebner over Marquice cole this time around, only because of Ebner's special team ability. I still believe Tavon will start at the strong safety spot, while Adrian Wilson will play as a linebacker in a sub-package. Only time will tell. This unit could be solid if McCourty taps into his potential as a free safety.
-Ryan Allen is the real deal. He will be on an NFL team come the regular season. I just cant unseat Mesko until i see Allen in the pre-season. Boom.
Practice Squad Possibilities
What are your opinions? Lemme Know.