Friday, January 15, 2010
The Patriots now have no offensive or defensive coordinator, as Dean Pees has stepped down. Pees is 60 years old, his contract will expire in a few weeks, and he may or may not take a job with another team.
So what now for the Patriots?
Well the two expected candidates are current LB coach Matt Patricia, and D-Line coach Pepper Johnson.
Patricia is 35, and took over at LB Coach for Pees in 2006. He's from Sherill, NY, which is the town next to Turning Stone Casino, where I used to play a lot of poker. That means nothing to you.
Johnson is 45, and has been the line coach since 2004. Before that, he was the ILB Coach, and the Assistant LB Coach. He's been with Belichick and the organization since 2000.
Based on Johnson's pedigree, he might be the favorite in this two horse race. He's got much more experience coaching on the defensive side of the ball. Patricia, before 2006, was an O-Line and Offensive Assistant Coach.
I'm getting tired of hearing Mike Vrabel's name. Work your thoughts and imagine your standard middle-aged Boston fan spouting unwisdom about how much the Patriots miss Mike Vrabel, especially for his "Leeta-shipp" (leadership). It's something I've heard entirely too much of, so I need to vent.
Mike Vrabel didn't leave the Patriots before the '09 season. He left before the '08 season. Sure, a person wearing #50 took the field, missed tackles, and failed to get any pressure on any QB. That wasn't the Mike Vrabel that made the Pro Bowl in '07, and registered 12.5 sacks and forced 5 fumbles. It was a cheap imitation.
Mike Vrabel was going to cost the Patriots $3 to $4 million in cap space for the 2009 season. He wasn't going to provide $3 to $4 million worth of production. The Patriots were essentially at the cap for 2009, so keeping Vrabel would've cost them $3 to $4 million in cap space.
Vrabel made 53 tackles for Kansas City this season. He had 2 sacks.
Vrabel's gone, he's essentially been gone for 2 seasons now. Get over it.
Some hockey fans in Boston have been suffering from amnesia lately. These people think it's "Tuukka Time." Incorrect. Nothing against Rask, but Tim Thomas is an elite goaltender. And he reaffirmed that last night, stopping 41 of 42 shots in regulation and OT. Then he stood on his head in the shootout, stopping everything, and extending it long enough for Chara to net the game winner.
Chara's shootout attempt was exactly what the Bruins' shootout efforts are missing. He just shot it, challenging Nabokov to make the save. No deking, no trickery, little deception; just a blast from the high slot.
I know it's only one game, and I've said this many times this season; but this is the kind of win that you can build a season on. The Bruins went into the Sharks' building, and beat the team with the best record in the NHL. And they did that without their top 3 centers (Krejci has an undisclosed injury).
And nothing against Trent Whitfield, but he shouldn't be wearing #42. The Bruins need to retire those digit.
Bruins @ Kings Saturday afternoon.
AP Photo/Tony Avelar