PatsDraft.Com

2017 Season Blog.

Defending

Super Bowl Champs.

7 Things for the Super Bowl: Part II.

By TOM

First off I just want to thank all the fans of this site. I have been promoting my books for sale primarily on this site. As a result, I have sold almost 500 books in the past year. Thank you for your support and patronage, both are greatly appreciated. I cannot tell you how happy it made me when I read that report. So thank you Draft fans and Patriot fans alike, and mostly thank you to all the fans of my books and website worldwide.

Too Many Things Going On: Part I.

Part II.

By TOM

1. Drafting Patriots- The Patriots have to get a QB in this years Draft. Since BB was forced to dump Garoppolo for a backup QB who could run practice, and a 2nd. If BB is going to stay AB (after Brady:), he has to have a QB he can win with. The first thing an HC has to have, if he wants to win, is a QB. The Pats coaches have learn this lesson well. 

That is why Patricia is going to Detroit (Stafford), and McDaniels is going to Indy (Luck). You cannot tell me that BB didn't talk to them about making sure they have a QB who can win. More DCs and OCs have lost their opportunity to succeed as Head Coaches, because they do not have a QB. As I have always said, "the HC and the QB is a symbiotic relationship." Belichick would not be the GOAT with TB12, and Brady would not be the GOAT without BB.  

So Belichick knows that if he wants to continue to coach here than he needs another Garoppolo. We can see how he instilled that wisdom in his DC and OC. "No play is good without good players who execute it," McDaniels said. "We can all sit here and draw up a bunch of pretty-looking plays. The guys who win the play are the players. So, if you’re putting together some play or plan that they can’t execute, it’s a bad play or a bad plan." And no HC is good without a QB who can execute in the clutch.

They chose the QB as much, if not more, than the Organization. "The offense goes through that position. That guy has to be an integral part of: the passing game, the running game, protections, all that stuff. And if you can coach him and really help mold that position, it gives you an opportunity to do a lot of things on offense," McDaniels said. "When you go from the squad meeting, to the offensive meeting, to the quarterback meeting, it’s like a little private group. You’re talking about very specific things, and they’re involved in a lot of complicated stuff. As we all know, this position in this league is extremely valuable. And that player is really important. I care deeply about doing that. I still try to get better at coaching that position. I think I can do that." BB knows has to find a QB for his Organization now as well. 

For me it starts at the Shrine game. What do the two quarterbacks who where the best two QBs Belichick ever Drafted have in common? They both played at the Shrine Game. For those of you who know anything about Drafting? It is as much about luck as it is hard work. Why a college superstar taking One overall fails, and an undrafted rookie free agent from North Dakota State U school of Hair Design becomes an All-Pro is baffling to me.

So when you get lucky with a particular Draft strategy, you would be a fool to not try and get lucky again. When you hit it big twice, you gotta go for the charm. So scouting the Shrine QBs was a big deal this year. I was paying particular attention for traits that were similar the two best QBs BB ever Drafted: Brady and Jimmy-G.

Brady was the best QB ever drafted, never mind BB's best ever. "The next pick was Tom Brady. The value board at that point really clearly put him as the top value," BB said way back when. " Brady is a guy that has obviously played at a high level of competition in front of a lot of people and he’s been in a lot of pressure situations. We felt that this year his decision-making was improved from his junior year after he took over for Brian Griese. He cut his interceptions down. He’s a good, tough, competitive, smart quarterback that is a good value and how he does and what he’ll be able to do, we’ll just put him out there with everybody else and let him compete and see what happens." It was said that BB actually wanted Giovanni Carmazzi, but he was taken off the Board in the 3rd, ironically by the 49ers.

Brady started the East West Shrine Game when he came out of Michigan, even though he was injured and had to leave the game in the 1st Quarter. "I think my best asset as a player is that in the 4th quarter, with the game on the line, I have the desire to win and the feeling that our team is not going to lose," Brady said at the 2000 Shrine Game. "I have lessons to learn. I am willing to learn them anywhere, any way I can." That is where the Patriots QB Coach Dick Rehbein meet him.

Legend has it that Rehbein wanted the Pats to Draft Brady, and stood on the table for him once Carmazzi was gone. "That was an interesting game because we started out a little bit on the Tim Rattay trail and Dick Rehbein went down there and worked him out at Louisiana Tech, or wherever he was from. They ran a big spread-offense and he had a lot of big numbers and all of that and we kind of liked him and thought that might be a late-round pick," BB said. "Then we got on Brady. So it was kind of Brady and Rattay in that 7th round. Then, as luck would have it, we took Brady and they took Rattay. And then they were playing against each other. And so we kind of got a look at that, those two quarterbacks in the 6th round, or whatever Brady was, but the same thing. I guess we took the right one." Yah think!

So we might be meeting the the next Brady/Jimmy-G very soon (or we're all screwed;). "I've watched this guy practice and play for too many practices. This guy is a good player. And I'm not shilling for Belichick," Lombardi said about Jimmy-G. "I'm telling you, he's worth the Patriots to hold onto him. If I was in New England, I'd be telling Belichick every day, 'There's no way we can trade him.' Ask any player who leaves New England. You can just randomly call a guy. They'll all tell you he's great." They need another great backup for a year or two who can develop into a winning NFL QB, like Jimmy-G.

Jimmy-G busted the 2014 Shrine game wide open at the end of the 1st Half, completing 9 passes in 12 attempts for a 100-yards and a TD (he threw two more passes in the 2nd Half, but both were incomplete, which is why his final stat was 9 for 14). "I wasn't used to coming off the bench," Jimmy-G said after the game. "So I had to get warmed up. But the coaches called some good plays to get me in a rhythm, and the offensive line did a great job as well." But it was his quick delivery and accuracy that really stood out. 

He was the Offensive MVP of the game, and the third QB to get in the game on the East team. It was a defensive game before Garoppolo entered the game. He immediately drove them down field for the East's first TD. BB saw his successor to Brady in the end of the 1st half of the 2014 Shrine Game. He has become the 2nd best QB Belichick ever Drafted. 

So I was looking for some similar traits at the Shrine Game this year. My money is on?

#1 Riley Ferguson- QB, Memphis, 6-4, 210- He is a little more like Brady in stature (identical actually;). Brady was listed at 6-5, 210 (though he has shrunk an inch and has been listed at 6-4 ever since;). Jimmy-G was listed at 6-2, 222. Ferguson has to prove he can play in a pro style offense. He is going to need a few years of development. 

He grew up in Green Bay. "When I was really young I was watching Green Bay play one day, and asked my dad who number 4 was. Ever since then, I just loved watching him play," Ferguson said. "The way he threw the ball, I just grew up trying to play like that. I always grew up watching him. Once I got a little older, I enjoyed watching him play even more. He was a gunslinger, and I feel like I'm the same way. I feel like I can make every throw on the field. So I think I can relate to Brett Favre." He has some clutch in him. 

Memphis went 10 and 3, behind Ferguson's season where he garnered 4,257 yards and 38 TDs. "Riley likes to sling it. He's got that gunslinger attitude, and he understands the game," the HC of the East Team at the Shrine game Jonathan Hayes said. "He has a huddle presence. He's guy I want to see how uncomfortable we can make him this week, and see how he responds." He only threw 9 INTs all season.

Very productive QB who can take a hit, and consistently dominated against much better teams. "Love him. [He's a] Gunslinger. We've just got to rein him in a little bit because he wants every ball to be a rocket, and his arm is so strong. He's still learning to use touch and take something off the ball in certain situations, on certain throws," the East's QB Coach Zack Grossi said. "He's studying, he asks really good questions and he's fun to be around. If he makes the same jump that he did from Monday to Tuesday (on Tuesday to Wednesday), he'll have himself set up for a really good week." You have to be impressed with his TD to INT ration: 4.2 to 1. 

He could be a nice option for the Pats on Day Three, or maybe 64. "He’s the real deal," a scout said at the Senior Bowl. " Love his arm and the way he competes. Just look at what he did this last game vs. Houston bringing his team all the way back. The guy has 'it'." He has nice touch on outside throws. 

The Pats will definitely be looking for a developmental back up in this Draft. He is a winner. He was recruited to Tennessee, but left for Memphis when Dobbs beat him out. He will wind up sometimes, which slows his release. He needs to tighten up his delivery a little.

So there is trouble in paradise. "His whole offense is half-field reads (which was the main criticism of Aaron Rogers when he was coming out of Cal). And he stays on his first target too long. I still don’t like the long release and don’t think he’s as athletic as others are saying," a scout said about Ferguson. " His balls hang in the air too long, but he does have good accuracy on intermediate throws. Need to see some consistency, but he has been a winner." He played in an offense at Memphis that has not translated very well to the NFL (except for one hall of fame exception;), which is why the Shrine was so important.

During the season notes: Ferguson may have been the best QB in college football in the first half of the season. And he has been doing it against more traditionally talented teams. He has the arm. He can fire a rocket over the middle 15 yards downfield, and it gets their fast. He can come off his first option and dump the ball off to the RB. He will make bad throws moving outside the pocket when he gets pressure. 

Ferguson Vs UCLA:

Smart and knows when to throw the ball away (:01). He can throw with accuracy and velocity with a rusher in his face (:23). He can (sometimes;) QB sneak like Brady (1:12). He ran play action with his back to the defense. He looked right, and pump faked right (4:09). Then he found his third option on the other side of the field. But that seems to be a new college play, where the QB look and pump fakes to one side, and then snaps their heads over to the other side and throw, as schemed. Mayfield was doing that a lot last season as well.

Watch this move by Anthony Miller (4:47). Here he was under center. He took the snap under center, and ran an NFL play action with his back to the safety again (5:15). He took a bit of a hit here (5:34). This is the next play after he was hit. It wasn't a big hit. In fact, it was more of a trip (5:56). But he did throw a beautiful bomb 50-yards down field on the next play.

Watch this back shoulder throw (6:36). He showed that knack for hitting the 3rd down passes, which is a QB's primary job (7:15). He went to his third option here (8:44). He got sacked by the big DT (9:45). It was the next play, but he had between the 3rd and 4th quarters to recover (9:59). That was a terrible throw after the hit.

Then he almost sacked himself, and tried to fumble the ball (10:12). After those shenanigans, he recovered with a great throw to the 2nd level. I like to judge QBs after bad plays and big hits (10:41). He took a wicked hit on his head with a helmet to helmet smash on this throw (10:54). This is the next play, after a bit of a delay for the refs to review the play (11:22). He ran play action, then pedal backwards as the spotted the WR on the seam. That is an NFL throw. After getting your bell rung, you have to be able to complete the next pass.

He has that knack for coming up big in the 4th (11:51). He took another huge hit to the head on the idiotic QB-Option run on 3rd down (12:22). Then on 4th and 2 they went for it. This is the next play after the huge hit (12:44). He completed it to Miller to keep the winning drive alive after getting his bell rung again. Pick 64?.