Sunday, September 14, 2008

Pats vs. Jets: The Cassel Era Begins

So the Patriots beat the Jets today in what was the start of the Matt Cassel era or the let's see if the world will end because Tom Brady won't play in 2008 season.

Well, the first challenge has been met. Brett and Co. go down in flames. The defense and special teams was a big part of the win just as much as Cassel's handling of the offense was. It wasn't pretty, but they got the win.

Here are my take-a-ways and concerns after game two:

- Cassel does look good at the helm. He looks better at the shotgun, i.e. the 2001 offense. When he does his drop step offense, that's when I would see a huge defensive push.

- I noticed a couple sideline shots of Moss and it looked like was kind of peeved that he didn't get more balls. He was open on a few occasions and Cassel missed him. However, there was one play in the 3rd quarter where Moss blew by the corner and was wide open. Cassel threw to him but it was slight under thrown. Moss bounced the ball off his chest, incomplete. Brady would have thrown that in stride and it would have been six.

- For all the trash talk about our D, they are looking pretty good. They played smart D today and stayed within their scheme and kept the scrambling Farve at bay. Seymour looks great and Adalius Thomas also looks beasty.

- The one concern I take away from the game is the offensive line and their blitz protection. Too many times Matty boy was rushed, sacked or knocked around when the Sons of Mangini would throw more than the front three at the Pats big boy's O-Line.

Overall, I'll grade the offense with a B+ (because we got the win, but blitz protection was weak), special teams an A+ (no returns, field goals good, etc.) defense an A- (the jets were able to run the ball when they wanted to), and overall A- (we got the win, but there are a number of things that will need to be worked on.

My thinking is that the Pats will still make the playoffs, looking at a 12-4 or 13-3 record. The team we have to worry about in the AFC East is the Bills. They are also 2-0 and are winning convincingly.

Up next: Miami.


Anonymous said...

Good stuff D. I think the blitz protection improves when Cassel gets rid of the ball quicker. Just as you mentioned, missing a wide open Moss is not good and if people pick up that blitzing Cassel can affect the Pats offense, it will just keep coming and coming. Faulk made HUGE plays again.

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