2015 Patriots Preview

Its officially week 1 of the NFL season! Preseason is over, teams are game planning, fantasy players are tinkering, DFS players are dreaming of $2 million smackers! So lets make some prognostications! First a quick recap of the 2014 prognostications to prove why or why you shouldn’t pay attention to me and my magic 8 ball. Link to 2014 preview.

Wrong

  • Peyton Manning didn’t retire, but a few of his fingertips did.
  • Calvin Johnson didn’t win MVP
  • The Bears sucked where I thought they’d be good.
  • Jason Garrett wasn’t fired because Dallas was good.
  • Tom Coughlin didn’t retire, and none of his fingertips did.
  • Logan Mankins didn’t make Doug Martin look good.
  • Shane Vereen was not the Pats offensive MVP and Aaron Dobson was nothing worht talking about.

Stuff I got sort of right

  • Seahawks were in the NFC championship game, but not against the Bears.
  • I had the 49ers being bad at 7-9, they were bad at 8-8.
  • I had Andy Reid and the Chiefs struggling and Alex Smith looking like an expensive mistake. Eh, they were 9-7 and Smith didn’t throw a TD to a wide receiver.

Right

  • Bryan Stork took over at center and solidified the Patriots offensive line.
  • Revis was the Pats defensive MVP.
  • Pats played the Seahawks in the Super Bowl.

My week by week Pats recap goes like this…

  • I had the Pats 13-3, averaging 26 points per game and giving up 19 points per game.
  • In actuality the Pats were 12-4, averaged 29.25 points per game and gave up 19.56 points per game. (How good a call is that defense points per game?!?!?!)

The weekly highlights were

  • Week 2 pick Pats 31, Vikes 13, Week 2 actual Pats 30, Vikes 7
  • Weeks 15 Pats 31, Miami 14, Week 15 actual Pats 41 Miami 13
  • Week 16 Pats 17, Jets 14, Week 16 actual Pats 17, Jets 16

So I had some ups and downs. Onto 2015 with my eye on a perfect season!

Week 1 (Thursday Night Football Season Kickoff Edition): Steelers @ Patriots

Steelers will be missing center Maurkice Pouncey, RB Le’veon Bell and WR Martavis Bryant and their offense will suffer because of those absences. Their defense is questionable at best, especially in a brand new system. Pats win even without Legarrette Blount because Tom Brady is going to be in total fuck you mode, with the full support of Bill Belichick.

Post Week 1: Patriots 1-0, Offensive Points Per Game 38, Defensive Points Per Game 17.

Week 2: Patriots @ Bills

The Bills defense was good in 2014 and will be great in 2015. Sadly there offense is rudderless outside of Lesean McCoy and playing the ball control game. I don’t expect them to be hitting their stride with that in week 2. Pats win 17-9

Post Week 2: Patriots 2-0, Offensive Points Per Game 27, Defensive Points Per Game 13.

Week 3: Jaguars @ Patriots

Jags could be fun to watch, but not good. Their defense will be good and aggressive, but can be exploited in the passing game. Pats 27-10.

Post Week 3: Patriots 3-0, Offensive Points Per Game 27, Defensive Points Per Game 12.

Week 4: Bye

Week 5: Patriots @ Cowboys

Dallas may be good, but the Pats are better. Dez Bryant may run wild in the secondary, but it won’t be enough. Pats 21-Dallas 20.

Post Week 5: Patriots 4-0, Offensive Points Per Game 25, Defensive Points Per Game 14.

Week 6: Pats @ Colts

On Sunday Night Football the Pats beat down the Colts, hard. This is a game TB12 and BB have circled on the schedule and Indy didn’t get any better on defense. Pats 48, Colts 24.

Post Week 6: Pats 5-0, Offensive Points Per Game 30, Defensive Points Per Game 16.

Week 7: Jets @ Patriots

Jets stink, but in the wake of 2 big games the Pats come out a little flat. They persevere but it isn’t pretty.

Post Week 7: Patriots 6-0, Offensive Points Per Game 28, Defensive Points Per Game 16

Week 8: Dolphins @ Patriots

Short week for both teams and I think that benefits the Dolphins which results in the first hiccup of the 2015 season for the Pats. Tannehill and the Fins announce their intentions in the AFC East. Dolphins 24, Pats 17.

Post Week 8: Patriots 6-1, Offensive Points Per Game 26, Defensive Points Per Game 17.

Week 9: Redskins @ Patriots

Who will be the Redskins QB by week 9? If that’s a question the Pats win, big, especially after losing to Miami. Pats 42, Redskins 12

Post week 9: Patriots 7-1, Offensive Points Per Game 28, Defensive Points Per Game 16.

Week 10: Patriots @ Giants

As the Pats defense begins to round into form, the Giants defense is devolving into a complete mess. Eli and ODB look great, but they can only do so much. Pats 27, Giants 20.

Post Week 10: Patriots 8-1, Offensive Points Per Game 28, Defensive Points Per Game 17.

Week 11: Bills at Patriots

Defense still amazing for Buffalo, Offense still a flutter. Pats 16, Bills 10.

Post Week 11: Patriots 9-1, Offensive Points Per Game 27, Defensive Points Per Game 16.

Week 12: Patriots @ Broncos

Sadly I see Peyton as a shell of his former great self, and who knows this could be Brock Osweiler versus TB12. Either way I don’t see the Broncos being good enough under their new coach to beat the Pats, even at home. Pats 24, Broncos 20.

Post Week 12: Patriots 10-1, Offensive Points Per Game  27 , Defensive Points Per Game  17.

Week 13: Eagles @ Patriots

Chip Kelly and a healthy Sam Bradford come to town and surprise the Pats with their efficiency. Even with as much tape as the Pats watch and as prepared for the formations and plays as they will be mentally, it is hard to replicate the speed of the game Kelly’s offense dictates. Eagles 35, Pats 24.

Post Week 13: Patriots 10-2, Offensive Points Per Game 27, Defensive Points Per Game 18.

Week 14: Patriots @ Texans

Big Vince Wilfork welcomes his former mates to his new home and their defense is remarkable. Regardless of whichever ex Tom BRady backup is starting for the Texans, I think they ball control and defense their way to the upset. Texans 21, Pats 19.

Post Week 14: Patriots 10-3, Offensive Points Per Game 26, Defensive Points Per Game 18.

Week 15: Titans @ Patriots

2015 number 2 overall pick Marcus Mariota is still running for his life and the Pats defense makes him put some more miles on his Oregon sponsored Nike’s. Pats 37, Titans 13.

Post Week 15: Patriots 11-3, Offensive Points Per Game 29, Defensive Points Per Game 17.

Week 16: Patriots @ Jets

Jets defense has developed into Todd Bowles system and is very good, but the Geno/Fitz show is still a sludterfuck. Pats 18, Jets 13.

Post Week 16: Pats 12-3, Offensive Points Per Game, 27, Defensive Points Per Game 16.

Week 17: Patriots @ Dolphins

The last two times the Pats have taken their talents to South Beach in December they have been blown out. The streak continues as the Dolphins let the Pats know that they are to be reckoned with should they meet in a few weeks in the playoffs. Dolphins 34, Pats 20.

Post Week 17: Patriots 12-4, Offensive Points Per Game 27, Defensive Points Per Game 18.

Pats Awards

Pats Offensive MVP: Rob Gronkowski in what will likely go down as the best season for a TE in NFL history.

Pats Defensive MVP: Jabaal Sheard is the benefactor of the group of Chandler Jones, Rob Ninkovich and Sheard, with occasional help from Dont’a Hightower and Jamie Collins, looking like a pack of Raptors going after QBs this year and it’s going to be lots of fun to watch.

Pats Unsung Hero: Travaris Cadet. He reminds me of another no name veteran the Pats acquired and turned into a superstar. Ok so maybe Cadet doesn’t become Wes Welker, but he could 100% become Danny Woodhead.

NFL Notes

  • Top 2 defenses in the league are Buffalo and Houston with Miami just a touch behind them.
  • Miami doesn’t win the AFC East, but they come damn close with 10-11 wins and make the playoffs.
  • Ndamukong Suh wins defensive player of the year earning all the sweet state tax free money.
  • Andrew Luck wins the league MVP despite looking like a tackling dummy at points because his offensive line blows.
  • Mediocrity dominates the NFL. Lots of teams will be between 6-8 wins. There were 9 in 2014 and I think that number ends up closer to 12 or 13 in 2015. The end result is there are less bottom feeders and a couple less elite teams.
  • Super Bowl pick is tough, I loved Green Bay before Jordy Nelson went down. so now I’m thinking the NFC is bit more wide open, but I’ll take a Dallas, New England Super Bowl game as my pick.
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