The season was lost on Sunday. There's no way back after such an ugly decimation. The offensive line is broke and rising star Dion Lewis is done for the season with an ACL injury. The Patriots offense was held to its lowest output of the year as freaking Bryan Stork played right tackle.
Oh, and the Patriots won by three scores. Anywhere else but New England?
The American currency was flipped, and this was the result.— Patrick Daugherty (@RotoPat) November 8, 2015
After all of the hoopla surrounding Bill Belichick's wiles about figuring out the coin flips based upon whether it's turf or grass, or the air moisture in the air, or whether the referee had a bean burrito for lunch, and the Patriots lost the coin toss and watched as Washington smugly deferred to the second half.
The Patriots marched down and scored, of course, but they had to feel a little uncomfortable knowing that Washington was going to get the ball in the second half with a chance to score a double whammy.
Patriots trying to bury them early. TAKE THAT DEFERRING AFTER THE COIN TOSS— Rich Hill (@PP_Rich_Hill) November 8, 2015
How do you make up for Jamie Collins' deactivation? Never let the defense take the field. Easy.— Doug Kyed (@DougKyed) November 8, 2015
Oh. OH. OHHHHH!!! That onside kick was completely brilliant and it absolutely neutralized Washington's 2nd half possession (the Patriots also forced a turnover on Washington's first drive of the 2nd half). That was wild. It also gives other teams a lot to chew on with regards to the Patriots special teams.
Branch in to protect on that Gostkowski FG. New role for him as far as I can tell. With OL thin, in need of some big bodies on that unit.— Phil Perry (@PhilAPerry) November 8, 2015
Alan Branch is listed as 350 lbs and that's probably being nice. He's a wall of a human and he's kind of perfect for blocking. Is he an emergency guard for the offensive line?
I wonder what some other players could provide possible depth on the offensive line. Like, all the tight ends, but especially Michael Williams, could play tackle in a pinch. What about Sealver Siliga at right guard? Chris Jones at center?
I think if you're a #Patriots fan, you're changing "discuss" to "pray" https://t.co/ODXWr93dpQ— shalise manza young (@shalisemyoung) November 8, 2015
Brady has a college right tackle @ left tackle, a college right guard @ left guard, an undrafted rookie center and a center at right tackle.— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) November 8, 2015
OL straight out of nightmares https://t.co/c6KUEzK1d7— Rich Hill (@PP_Rich_Hill) November 8, 2015
@PP_Rich_Hill A nightmare OL would have Jordan Devey in it somewhere.— David Cornette (@DavidLC11) November 8, 2015
I still can't get over the fact that Bryan Stork played the entire second half of a professional football game at right tackle, and he played well. There's nothing that the Patriots can't ask Stork to do at this point. Put him at wide receiver and I'd expect him to post 150 yards and two scores over Darrelle Revis. Give him the green dot on defense and he'll put Jamie Collins to shame.
Stork is love. Stork is life.
November 8, 2015
Logan Ryan (24), by the way, is younger than Malcolm Butler (25)— Mark Daniels (@MarkDanielsPJ) November 8, 2015
The Patriots secondary is really, really young.
Malcolm Butler (25) is the old man at cornerback, with Logan Ryan (24) and Justin Coleman (22) still in diapers.
Devin McCourty (28) and Patrick Chung (28) share a birthday week, while Duron Harmon (24) and Jordan Richards (22) are fresh-faced.
This is a secondary that could stick together through 2020 and wouldn't see a decline. Heck, most of these players would just be getting into their prime. Maybe I'm dreaming, but I would absolutely love to see a positional group stick together for their whole career.
Josh Kline said he doesn't think the Pats ever practiced with the O-line combo that played the entire second half.— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) November 8, 2015
The FOX broadcast just absolutely butchered Dave DuGuglielmo's name. And that was after asking for help.— Lee Schechter (@LeeSchechter) November 8, 2015
Lots of guys in locker room crediting Brady for keeping guys calm after OL shuffling and Lewis injury.— Christopher Price (@cpriceNFL) November 8, 2015
Everyone will know DuGuglielmo's name moving forward.
Or, second thought, they can just call him "Gug" (pronounced "googe"). If we had to listen to Phil Simms try to pronounce Michael Hoomanawanui for four seasons, we do not need another difficult name.
Kudos to the line for playing through a nearly impossible scenario and for putting together a fairly solid production. Hopefully more pieces of the line will be back next week, but, if not, I trust that Gug will have this unit in a great place to succeed.