Widely considered to be a major coup for the New England Patriots, Dom Capers has been named Special Assistant/Secondary coach of the Patriots. Secondary coach I get; he worries about defensive backs. But, Special Assistant? I view this as a way to distinguish Dom from the other coaches. You know, the guy who has 36 years experience in football and could school every other coach except Belichick? The guy that BB can talk to at the same level? Yup, that's Dom.
Dom has had a ridiculous career. From head coach of 2 NFL teams to defensive coach, he's been all over the gridiron. So why is Dom such a good catch? As one of our latest draft acquisitions found out, the devil is in the details:
Capers pulled second-round draft choice Terrence Wheatley to the side and told him to look at his right foot. Capers then planted his right foot into the ground. Then he did it again. And again.
"I was stepping with the wrong foot," Wheatley later explained. "He was just trying to be very specific, which is how you have to be as a player at this level. You can't round anything out, you have to be very precise in your movement and your angles."
Wheatley will leave rookie mini camp staring at his right foot, guaranteed. And with the number of new guys in the secondary, it was wise to focus a great deal of attention in this area by pulling in someone of Dom's caliber. But, I believe there's another reason: the Patriots were 10th in rushing yards per game, 6th in passing yards per game and 4th overall in defense for the 2007 regular season. While that's not too bad, I gotta believe it irks the heck out of Belichick. Remember, the Patriots were 1st in passing yards per game and 1st in overall offense for 2007. Ever the perfectionist, he wants this area to be strong. Remember those shots of Bill, with whiteboard in hand, drawing for Junior and Tedy? Yeah, he likes defense and wants it better.
Imagine, if you will, a defense as strong as the Patriots's offense. Imagine young, raw talent learning from a coach like Dom and soaking up all the experience our vets have to offer. Imagine a defense capable of sucking the life out of every offense in the NFL.
Just imagine... Welcome aboard, Dom .