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Author: @ALykins32

Eye of the Tiger: Part 2 of Patriots Training Camp

This is Part 2 of the 10 Patriots with the most to prove heading into training camp. To read the first five Patriots visit Part 1. Who’s got the eye of the tiger? The thrill of the fight… Heading into the 2018 training camp for the New England Patriots, there are 90 hungry young men vying for 53 roster spots. Who wants it most? Which player will fight off challengers for a roster spot? Training camp is the place to find answers to these questions. The quest for a sixth championship begins with the start of the regular season. There is lots of work to be done in that time. For your pre-training camp look at which Patriots have the most to prove, we have dived deep into the roster and dissected position depth, contract details, and likelihood of making the roster. Of course, we will apply the highly scientific Shakeup Factor to let you know the potential impact if these players do not make the team. Elandon Roberts, LB Roberts has performed admirably for a sixth round pick. He has started for the bulk of two years with the Patriots and won a Super Bowl while playing in another. However, his limited coverage abilities have been exposed and the Patriots may be looking for younger, better replacements. Shakeup Factor: 4.8 He has definitely fallen short of being the “best...

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Ten Patriots That Need to Have the Eye of the Tiger: Part 1

Who’s got the eye of the tiger? The thrill of the fight… Heading into the 2018 training camp for the New England Patriots, there are 90 hungry men vying for 53 roster spots. Who wants it? Who has what it takes? Training camp is the place for answers to these questions. The Patriots’ quest for a sixth championship begins with the start of the regular season. In the first part of this series we take a pre-training camp look at which Patriots have the most to prove. We’ll take go deep into each position’s depth, contract details, and likelihood of making the roster. We’ll apply my scientific Shakeup Factor to let you know how critical it is for them to make the roster.  10. Jeremy Hill, RB The veteran running back signed with New England late in free agency. If he wants to make the team, he will have to show that fire that he possessed in 2014. As a rookie he rushed for over 1100 yards. However, Hill is recovering from an ankle injury that ended his 2017 season and has very little money guaranteed. Shakeup Factor: 1.5 This is all gravy! If he returns to form and produces well. There is no downside here if he doesn’t make the team. 9. Jordan Richards, DB This was one of Belichick’s more head-scratching picks. When he selected the Stanford Cardinal...

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Trent Brown: Who Is This Guy?

The Belichick strikes again! The chicken littles came out when in force when Nate Solder left the Patriots in free agency. “How could they let him go”, and “No one on the team can replace him.” Sprinkle in a couple “You gotta protect Tom Brady!” His Plan So what does he do? Does he overpay for some of the other departing free agents in a panic? Does he sign marginal free agents in hopes that they stick? No, he waits. And he waits. Then when the moment and the situation is right, he Strikes! Selecting Isaiah Wynn to join the team and recently resigned LaAdrian Waddle. Ok, the Littles got a little quieter. “But, he’s a rookie” and “He should play guard”, joined the chorus. Then Friday morning of the draft, news broke that the Patriots traded with the San Francisco 49ers to acquire right tackle Trent Brown. The internet was abuzz with the new look of the Patriots offensive line and what the position coach, Dante Scarnecchia, was going to be working with in training camp. So, who is Trent Brown? Is he going to protect the blind side? Why was he traded? Will we be hearing his name in February as a starter in the Super Bowl or a surprise cut in August? The Man Trent Brown was one of those nondescript draft picks, pick 244 in...

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Reliving Randy Moss’ Patriots Career

It’s been years since Bill Belichick has been able to call a team and give a low ball offer and get a ready-made star in return. Now, when an executive takes a call from the Patriots and get “I’ll take this guy off your hands for a mere….”, they should immediately hang up and spend the rest of the day figuring out what the hell they are doing wrong. And the trade that was the beginning of the end was the fleecing if the Oakland Raiders in the acquisition of Randy Moss for a fourth-round pick. But what if the trade was never made? Would the fortunes of both franchise have been forever altered? Could the Oakland Raiders have built championship teams on the legs of one of the best receivers in NFL History? Would the Patriots dynasty have ended with the defensive juggernauts of Tom Brady’s younger years? Oakland’s Fortunes Could a motivated Randy Moss have been the key to turning around the storied franchise for the 2007-2010 seasons? No. Not a chance. This team had so many problems, culminating in the power struggle following Al Davis’ death. New head coach Lane Kiffin considered Moss a poor locker room presence and wanted him gone. They took the fourth-round pick and selected John Bowie. Couple that with #1 overall bust of the century JaMarcus Russell, and the world would...

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Lesson Plan for Sony Michel

The Patriots shocked everyone when they selected UG bulldog Sony Michel running back in the first round. But you don’t let your lead running back leave in free agency without a backup plan. Nearly 900 yards on the ground, and another 200 in the air. Dion Lewis was an atypical lead back. His cutting style and small frame powering through the line of scrimmage. What’s more is that he played the part well. In the 2017 season he looked like a lead back. This production was bittersweet when he signed a free agent contract with the Tennessee Titans. Replacing the yards from his snaps would not be easy. The team did resign Rex Burkhead and looked for free agent options. Eventually deciding on Jeremy Hill as a low risk, veteran gamble. The Lesson One only has to look at the Dallas Cowboys as a recent lesson. They did not properly plan for a succession at that position. DeMarco Murray’s production was not immediately replaced when he left in free agency. The Cowboys scrambled with a group that produced a thousand yard rusher in Darren McFadden and little else. In response to this, the Cowboys scrambled and drafted Ezekiel Elliott the next year. This ensured that the position was set. The Patriots have made one thing clear. It’s that they won’t allow that sequence of poor performance to sink a...

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