PDA

View Full Version : Boston Globe: Some of their promises were empty


Bob Dole
11-28-2005, 06:45 AM
By Ron Borges | November 28, 2005

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Chiefs did their homework all week. Yesterday they passed the test.

After six days spent studying every move the Patriots' receivers made this season and every throw Tom Brady delivered to them, Gunther Cunningham's defense hounded and harassed Brady into four interceptions, tipping balls, tapping his receivers, tipping him upside down, and trashing his running game until there was little left of what once had been New England's offense.

Gone was the element of surprise the Patriots had relied on to scorch so many opponents in the past. Gone, too, was the immobilizing fear the three-time Super Bowl champions once inspired. All that was left was a too-often empty threat.

''We looked at what they do and where they align their receivers and got good breaks on some of Brady's balls," said Chiefs safety Greg Wesley not long after he'd broken so well on three of them that he picked them off to play a key role in a 26-16 thrashing at Arrowhead Stadium. ''We studied them hard all week. They did what they always do."

Like the loss in Denver five weeks ago, the Patriots fell desperately behind early, trailing, 26-3, in the third quarter before they mounted a brief rally that was little more than a mirage. The reality was they were not coming back in this game, just as they didn't in Denver, because they neither could stop their opponent nor attack it with consistency or the element of surprise.

For the seventh time in the past eight games the Patriots allowed a team more than 400 yards of total offense (420), and the only reason it's not eight in a row was that the Buffalo Bills fell 6 yards short last month. Those yards came in two ways yesterday, first by repeatedly gashing the heart of the Patriots defense with the powerful running of Larry Johnson. He rumbled through holes between the guards that sprung open because New England's interior line was being knocked off the line of scrimmage and its inside linebackers were being pushed back and chipped so often that they never got a clean shot at Johnson early in the game. Sixty-six of Johnson's 79 first-half yards came on runs up the middle and not even the presence of Tedy Bruschi and Mike Vrabel made a difference where Kansas City chose to run.

Secondly, things were no better when Trent Green went back to pass. Green became the fourth straight quarterback to throw for more than 300 yards against the Patriots (323), and as has become its trademark, their injury-riddled secondary allowed five completions of 20 yards or more, with the burns being fairly evenly divided between Asante Samuel, Michael Stone, and Ellis Hobbs. Kansas City was able to throw to the left, to the right, and down the middle at will, and as every top tight end has done to them this season, Tony Gonzalez torched them, averaging 15.8 yards a catch on four receptions.

''We didn't play well enough," coach Bill Belichick mumbled, in the understatement of the day. ''We didn't play well enough on offense and we didn't play well enough on defense, and we didn't play well enough on special teams. We need to do a better job of coaching, so I think that [the problems are] across the board. They played better than we did."

They not only played better, they were better-prepared. On the first play of the day, Heath Evans was stuffed for no gain. On the second play, Brady threw incomplete. On the third play, he threw another incompletion on a play on which no one was open. When the Chiefs got the ball, Johnson ran for 15 yards on the first play, although it was called back because of a penalty. On the next play, wide receiver Eddie Kennison torched Samuel for a 42-yard gain. Four plays later it was Gonzalez wide open in the middle of the field for a 9-yard catch on third and 6, and after that it was a steady diet of Johnson. His 1-yard run made it 7-0 Chiefs.

continued...

Bob Dole
11-28-2005, 06:46 AM
On the next series, Brady threw the first of his four interceptions on a ball that flew over Deion Branch, and the Chiefs were at it again, beating New England's defense on third and 5 with a 21-yard Gonzalez reception. Ultimately the defense would stiffen, but only enough to hold the Chiefs to the first of four Lawrence Tynes second-quarter field goals. On one of those drives Green didn't see Kennison wide open in the end zone and on another Johnson tripped and fell at the 2 or he would have walked into the end zone. Had that been the case, it would have been about a 27-3 deficit by halftime, yet even though New England held the Chiefs out of the end zone in the second quarter, no one had any delusions about what had happened.

''They attacked us pretty well," defensive end Richard Seymour said wearily. ''They kept us off balance the whole game. We couldn't tell what they'd do. They had such a balanced attack [112 yards rushing on 37 carries, 323 passing on 26 throws with a touchdown each way]. It's tough when they can do a variety of things to you. We started slow. They were ready to play."

Not only were they ready to play, they apparently had a pretty good idea of what the Patriots would be trying to do and when they'd do it, shutting down their feeling-the-pain running game (42 yards minus Brady's scrambles and two end arounds by Tim Dwight) while sacking Brady three times and knocking him around many more. Pressured most of the day, Brady ended up with a passer rating of 42.5, the third-lowest of his career, and had no illusions that things were other than what they seemed to be.

''Early in the game we had a hard time doing anything -- throwing, running, catching," Brady said. ''They pressured us pretty good. They got us off the field on third down. They played a lot of man coverage and we had a hard time throwing it or catching it."

Clearly, the Patriots have even bigger defensive problems that are not going to be solved this season, not only in the secondary but also against strong running teams. They have allowed six of their last eight opponents to rush for more than 100 yards and they're getting picked to pieces by every passer who gets a reasonable amount of time to throw, which lately has been everyone they face.

None of those problems should affect New England's chances of reaching the postseason in the abysmal AFC East, but the fact is they are life-and-death with nearly everyone they face these days, and that can lead to unexpected problems on any Sunday when the offense isn't precise and exceedingly productive.

Injury has had much to do with that, but it is not the only problem. The defense is struggling in the middle even with Bruschi and Vrabel in the lineup, and Brady is being hit too often. That finally led to a day in which it seemed he was wild high when he was pressured and wild high when he wasn't, a result that was to be expected under the circumstances.

''I thought he got a little rattled today," Wesley said of Brady. ''Taking hits like that, a guy will be a little rattled. He didn't know what we were going to do."

Brady tried to claim he had plenty of time, but the facts, and his performance, belied his words. There was no comfort zone for him because the Chiefs got after him early, stuffed the run, and kept the pressure on while the secondary dogged his receivers. The converse was not true when New England was on defense, however. They didn't slow down Johnson until the fourth quarter and never found a way to cover Gonzalez or avoid the periodic deep ball completions that have plagued them because of the weaknesses in their secondary and because they put so little pressure on the quarterback (31st in NFL in sacks with 16). What that all led to was another difficult day that has left some of their best players wondering what to expect next.

''Right now we don't know what type of team we have," Seymour said. ''This is a different team than we've had. What we've done [in the past] has no bearing on the present. This was a day where, if we'd been in school, we would have just been marked present. That's all we were today."

Extra Point
11-28-2005, 06:49 AM
Can we trade this guy for Whitlock?

the Talking Can
11-28-2005, 06:51 AM
"They not only played better, they were better-prepared."


Nice to hear.

ps

I wish we had a writer like that for the star...that is a great recap.

Amnorix
11-28-2005, 07:16 AM
FYI, Borges is the Whitlock of Boston. :) I'm serious -- he's universally reviled here because he is a chronic Belichick-hater.

His most famous statement is, perhaps, his prediction on 2001 Super Bowl: Rams 73, Patriots 0. It's one thing to predict we'd lose to that truly talented team, but he went far beyond that, predicting (and writing about) the great humiliation that was about to befall us.

And, of course, picking Brady over Bledsoe was ridiculous, and then trading Bledsoe within the division was utter insanity. Etc. ad infinitum.

Perhaps Cold, Hard Football Facts said it best:

"Itís no secret to anyone who follows football that Borges has a boatload of problems with the way the New England NFL franchise runs its ship. The state-of-the-art, privately funded stadium, the profitability, the adoration, the resurrection of the laughingstock franchise, the team-first philosophy, the budding dynasty status, the NFL record 34 wins in two seasons and the record-tying three Super Bowl titles in four years are not enough to impress Borges. He remains hung up on the fact that New England fails to follow the formula set by the failed Houstons, Indys and Detroits of the pro football world, wildy throwing money at any player with two gonads and a helmet.

Each time New England makes a move thatís even slightly questionable, Borges dives off the deep end. Perhaps itís an effort to rescue his reputation, which walked the plank long ago. (Keep in mind that Borges is the same guy who called Patriots fans "idiots" last season for preferring Tom Brady over the Picasso of Choke Artists, Peyton Manning.)"

http://www.coldhardfootballfacts.com/Article.php?Page=100&Category=5

Amnorix
11-28-2005, 07:18 AM
"They not only played better, they were better-prepared."


This is a shot at the Patriots coaches. It's inherent in every article he writes.

When we win, it's because our players are superior to our opponent's. When we lose, it's because our star players were injured, so we didn't have enough talent, or because "we weren't as well prepared" or whatever.

Just remember that he hates Belichick with a passion, and through that prism, everything he says makes sense.

Amnorix
11-28-2005, 07:22 AM
Heh. Found it:


"There's a Risk Factor at Work for Belichick


Boston Globe
November 22, 2001

by Ron Borges

Bill Belichick walked the plank this week. Now Tom Brady will decide if he goes off the end of it or not.

The Patriots' personality-challenged coach created a quarterback controversy where none existed when he declared on his Monday radio show that Brady was the team's starting quarterback ''for the foreseeable future.''

http://www.allthingsbillbelichick.com/articles/riskfactor.htm

morphius
11-28-2005, 07:39 AM
FYI, Borges is the Whitlock of Boston. :) I'm serious -- he's universally reviled here because he is a chronic Belichick-hater.

His most famous statement is, perhaps, his prediction on 2001 Super Bowl: Rams 73, Patriots 0. It's one thing to predict we'd lose to that truly talented team, but he went far beyond that, predicting (and writing about) the great humiliation that was about to befall us.

And, of course, picking Brady over Bledsoe was ridiculous, and then trading Bledsoe within the division was utter insanity. Etc. ad infinitum.

Perhaps Cold, Hard Football Facts said it best:

"Itís no secret to anyone who follows football that Borges has a boatload of problems with the way the New England NFL franchise runs its ship. The state-of-the-art, privately funded stadium, the profitability, the adoration, the resurrection of the laughingstock franchise, the team-first philosophy, the budding dynasty status, the NFL record 34 wins in two seasons and the record-tying three Super Bowl titles in four years are not enough to impress Borges. He remains hung up on the fact that New England fails to follow the formula set by the failed Houstons, Indys and Detroits of the pro football world, wildy throwing money at any player with two gonads and a helmet.

Each time New England makes a move thatís even slightly questionable, Borges dives off the deep end. Perhaps itís an effort to rescue his reputation, which walked the plank long ago. (Keep in mind that Borges is the same guy who called Patriots fans "idiots" last season for preferring Tom Brady over the Picasso of Choke Artists, Peyton Manning.)"

http://www.coldhardfootballfacts.com/Article.php?Page=100&Category=5
One could easily argue that after your previous superbowl appearance against a team considerd better by just about everyone, that 77-0 probably was close to accurate. Though I'm sure you have tried to block that Bears superbowl shuffle out of your mind.

Amnorix
11-28-2005, 07:47 AM
One could easily argue that after your previous superbowl appearance against a team considerd better by just about everyone, that 77-0 probably was close to accurate. Though I'm sure you have tried to block that Bears superbowl shuffle out of your mind.


:shrug: I'm not sure a single Boston writer picked the Pats. I know I sat down to watch the game thinking EVERYTHING had to go exactly right, and even then, I wasn't sure we'd win.

But seriously, this isn't about ONE prediction. It's about 5 years of writing. Seriously -- go to Patriots Planet and post a thread asking for people's general opinion of Ron Borges, and you'll get damn close to unanimity in the answers, and as you know, it's near-impossible to get a BB to agree on anything...

morphius
11-28-2005, 07:49 AM
:shrug: I'm not sure a single Boston writer picked the Pats. I know I sat down to watch the game thinking EVERYTHING had to go exactly right, and even then, I wasn't sure we'd win.

But seriously, this isn't about ONE prediction. It's about 5 years of writing. Seriously -- go to Patriots Planet and post a thread asking for people's general opinion of Ron Borges, and you'll get damn close to unanimity in the answers, and as you know, it's near-impossible to get a BB to agree on anything...
I believe you. I was just being a (smart/dumb)ass. After Taco guarnteed that there was no way the Chiefs could beat the Pats, I didn't think we had a chance. Still 2 SB and an off year that gets you into the playoff's is hard to bitch about.

cadmonkey
11-28-2005, 08:05 AM
Ron Borges is the absolute worst. All he does is bash the home teams around here. He rips the Pats when they win, he says I told you so when they lose.

I don't know why he still has a job, he writes things just to piss people off.

After beating Philly last year he ripped the organization for not winning 4 straight. "A real team would have at least made it to the AFC Championship game the year they didn't win the Super Bowl."

I stopped listening to and reading his sh*tty article years ago.

BORGES = OUR WHITLOCK

Amnorix
11-28-2005, 08:06 AM
I believe you. I was just being a (smart/dumb)ass. After Taco guarnteed that there was no way the Chiefs could beat the Pats, I didn't think we had a chance. Still 2 SB and an off year that gets you into the playoff's is hard to bitch about.


3 SBs. Don't miscount the hardware. :)

Honestly, I'm not sure if I'd rather make the playoffs and lose in the 1st round, or just skip the whole thing.

(perhaps I'm jaded by too much success).

Undertaker #59
11-28-2005, 08:08 AM
One could easily argue that after your previous superbowl appearance against a team considerd better by just about everyone, that 77-0 probably was close to accurate. Though I'm sure you have tried to block that Bears superbowl shuffle out of your mind.


Heh....you forgot one. 1996 loss to Green Bay 35-21.

But seriously, Borges is just an assclown and has been one for years. He now writes these kinds of articles because he knows they will get a response.

If you ever have time to waste, do a search on Patriots Planet on Borges, you will find some interesting gems.

Here is a recent picture of him:

Amnorix
11-28-2005, 08:08 AM
I stopped listening to and reading his sh*tty article years ago.

BORGES = OUR WHITLOCK

What's sad is he's pretty smart, witty and writes well. He's supposedly a good boxing reporter (I wouldn't know, I know dick about boxing and never read anything about it).

But he's just so anti-Patriots that his brains, wit and good writing are all misdirected into vitriol.

Oh well, thank God for Tom Curran and Mike Reiss.

Cad -- I give it 3 years, tops, before Reiss takes over for the idiot tandem of Borges/Cafardo as the Globe's main Patriots reporter. Solomon doesn't seem bad for now, anyway.

the Talking Can
11-28-2005, 08:09 AM
Whitlock has never written an article with that much information.

And I don't care whether or not Amnorix likes him.

Amnorix
11-28-2005, 08:10 AM
Here is a recent picture of him:

ROFL ROFL

I forgot about that one. Good stuff.

Yes, suffice to say that Patriots Nation loves Borges...

Amnorix
11-28-2005, 08:12 AM
Whitlock has never written an article with that much information.

And I don't care whether or not Amnorix likes him.

I've never read Whitlock, so I wouldn't know.

Borges is smart and writes well. His hostility is sometimes very subtle, and sometimes blatant. But over time, you certainly know him for what he is.

And yes, obviously, the fact that he's a Patriots hater is irrelevant to non-Patriots fans. But when you wish he could be YOUR TEAM'S writer, be careful what you wish for. He might not like your team, or your coach, or the owner, or who knows what, in which case, you'll just have another Whitlock to enjoy.

KCTitus
11-28-2005, 08:12 AM
Honestly, I'm not sure if I'd rather make the playoffs and lose in the 1st round, or just skip the whole thing.

(perhaps I'm jaded by too much success).

You've come to the right place if you want to discuss this. :D

PastorMikH
11-28-2005, 08:21 AM
After Taco guarnteed that there was no way the Chiefs could beat the Pats, I didn't think we had a chance.



You've been around enough to know that Taco's "guarntee" assures us of a Victory. I have yet to see any of Taco's anti-Chief predictions come true.

jidar
11-28-2005, 09:12 AM
Taco at best knows a bit about the Broncos. You can't take anything else he says about the NFL seriously.

As for this article, the writing seems pretty good, so this guy can't be NEs version of Whitlock. Whitlock articles aren't just stuck on bashing the Chiefs, they're also poorly written. That guy is just a pretender, a wannabe Whitlock who can't suck like the big man can.

morphius
11-28-2005, 09:31 AM
3 SBs. Don't miscount the hardware. :)

Honestly, I'm not sure if I'd rather make the playoffs and lose in the 1st round, or just skip the whole thing.

(perhaps I'm jaded by too much success).
I wasn't miscounting, I just started from the season you didn't make the playoff's after winnning the SB. As long as you can keep from playing like the Raiders in the last SB, making the playoff's is a nice thing.