“Once More unto the Breach Dear Friends Once More“
Tom Brady may have spent more time with the Texans over the past year than he has with some of his best friends, or even some family members. In a twelve month span the Pats and Texicans have squared off in the pre-season, reg-season, playoffs and spent a lovely weekend vacationing together at a former bunker built to hide most of the US Government in the event of Nuclear Attack. Good times. Half of the Texans coaching staff either played or coached for Bill Belichick. In short, these teams know one another – and don’t like each other. I LIKE THAT.
The Last meeting of meaning was in the div round playoff game last year where the Patriots came out on top of a 34 -16 score. A game many of us thought was much closer than that score indicated. There is a healthy respect and disrespect from each side of the field on Sunday. This Texicans team has replaced the Colts as the Patriots biggest rivals. Sorry Pittsburgh, you need to show up to be part of a rivalry. Here are my Monster Keys to Pats victory.
Cut the diamond:
Much has been made of the Texicans Diamond D. Sorry but this is the same D I watched Buddy Ryan run out in Chicago and in Philly. That’s not a typo kids – Rex had a dad. His name was Buddy and he was an evil asshole genius. But this, like any diamond can be cut. You look at it, study it then put another diamond against it and TAP. The diamond cutter is Tom Brady. Look for Brady to get his backs and receivers in motion often. Once he does this, the Texans will tip their hand as to being in Man or Zone coverage then Brady can Tap Tap Tap away until there is nothing left but Diamond Dust.
Exploit the Corp:
As fast and ferocious as the Texicans D-Line is, their linebackers are that slow. Split out Gronk, get White Lewis and Burkhead in motion and into the slot and tear up the middle of the field to move the chains.
No Pale Ale the Pats need Stout On Sunday:
This Diamond D likes to attack from up the middle but the Texans also have speed on the outside. When the pressure comes up the gut the inside guys need to react quick to give Tom the time to get the ball out. When pressure comes from the outside the tackles need to push the pass rush back behind the pocket and let Brady step up and read thru progressions.
Win the turnover Battle:
Never forget this key EVER.
Shutdown Hopkins :
Time and again, Belichick has taken away a team’s best weapon to insure his teams win and move on. This week that weapon is Deandre Hopkins. Whoever Bill has on him needs to knock him off his route every single time – make rookie QB Deshaun Watson have to look for him.
It’s Elementary Watson:
Keep this kid in the pocket. Watson’s best attribute is what he can do with his legs – he showed that a week ago. I won’t go into how much I didn’t like this kids game in college (I hated it) – yeah, I lied – sue me. His arm is weak and his fastball is non existent. All the Pats need to do is not let him get outside the pocket and move the chains with his feet or busted plays.
Know your Job:
While a lot of fanfare has come the patriots way after last weeks “righting of the ship”, still the DB’s are giving up huge chunk plays allowing six completions of better than 20 yards and three longer than 30 (42, 38 and 33). Don’t let this happen Sunday. You have to know your job before you can do it. It doesn’t hurt to yell out CHECK or SWITCH from time to time, or hell, every time.
That’s it folks. What more could you ask for? I gave you quotes from Shakespeare and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. I know it looks easy on paper but I assure you, the Pats will have their hands full come Sunday.
As always you can follow/give me grief on Twitter at @Tmurph207