The Patriots play their second playoff game of the season at Gillette against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday
Same matchup as last year. It's deja vu all over again.
I think this year's Pats are better than last year's.
Defense = improved. It's not a stretch to say this year's defense is better than last year's historically bad D.
Offense = Hot damn! A running game!
I'm not saying we're going to win. But I like our chances.
I'm hoping the fatigue from the extra playoff game AND two overtimes last week catches up to Baltimore. Their defense is old. They lost 4 of their last 5 regular season. Time to unleash the Speed Crush offense.
Brandon Power Rankings:
(We had 4 Brandons play in the game last week. That's gotta be some kind of record, right? The Patriots lead the league in Brandons.)
Also... Brandon Spikes Dance!
Here's five things I'll be watching for this week:
1) Shane Vereen - I'm going to remember that game against the Texans as "The Shane Vereen Game" for quite a while. I had no idea he had that in him. He had 62 carries and 8 receptions on the whole season.
2) Stevan Ridley - Ridley didn't exactly suck, either. He had 5.5 yards per carry and a TD.
3) Rob Ninkovich - I would have included him on the list last week, but I wasn't even sure he was going to play after getting hurt week 17. Looked pretty darn good out there.
4) Aaron Hernandez - Watch Ray Lewis try to keep up with him over the middle this week. Should be fun. I set the over / under on holding calls at 4.
5) Tom Brady - Now leads all quarterbacks with 17 career playoff wins. All quarterbacks. Ever.
Compare those numbers to rival Peyton Manning, who now holds the record with 8(!) one-and-out playoff runs. Breaking the record previously held by... Peyton Manning. When you don't even have the most rings at the family Thanksgiving table, you don't get to be in the Greatest of All Time conversation.
Did Michael Hoomanawanui have a catch last week?
My prediction: Pats 35, Ravens 24
Nut up or move on.
This year, we're going to have regular contributions from Fake Bill Belichick for your reading pleasure. Here's this week's selection from Fake Bill Belichick's second book "My Patriot Years":
What up, Bros and Lady Bros? This is Fake Josh McDaniels filling in for Fake Bill Belichick. BB said he's too busy. (Trying to see if can put together a pass rush against the Ravens with spare parts... HA! Defense is for tools.). He said I could take over the column this week. JOSH'S GOT THE KEYS TO DAD'S CAR!
Did you guys see me spring Shane Vereen on an unsuspecting Texans D last week? Was that sweet or what? DAMN STRAIGHT!
My buddy Brian Daboll (WHAT UP, B-DOGS?!) got fired by the Kansas City Chiefs last week. Totes not his fault. What's a brother to do? He's got a total choad for a QB, you know? Bad sitch. Anyway, Josh tries to take care of his fellow OCs. It's a special fraternity.
As soon as I heard he got popped, I went to talk to Bill.
JM: Yo Bee Squared! Can we hire back Brian Daboll?
JM: Brian Daboll. He worked here for like 6 seasons.
BB: Since when do you make hiring decisions?
(10 minutes later)
BB: Are you still here?
JM: You didn't give me an answer on Daboll? Is that yes?
BB: Fine. Just get out of my office.
JM: Thanks! Can do.
BB: But he doesn't get a headset!
So... That's how Josh McD hooks a brother up. It's all about the offense.
OK... Gotta go... Done chatting with you for now. Going to grab a brotein shake. I'll be back.
JAY MICK DEE OUT.