For the first time in three years, Danny Amendola will be taking in the Super Bowl as a spectacular.
Amendola played for the Lombardi Trophy three times over the course of his five-year stint with the New England Patriots. The veteran wide receiver seemed to always elevate his play in big games, which surely helped him land a two-year, $12 million deal with the Miami Dolphins this past offseason.
The 33-year-old’s final game with the Patriots came in Super Bowl LII, which saw Tom Brady pass all over the U.S. Bank Stadium turf in a losing effort against the Philadelphia Eagles. This time around, however, Amendola believes Brady and Co. won’t be stretching the field nearly as much.
“They’re gonna have to control the ball and control (Aaron) Donald that way whether it’s running off guard, off tackle,” Amendola said Wednesday on FOX Sports 1’s “The Herd.” “I think getting the ball out quick, three-step drop. You saw the opening drive of the Kansas City (Chiefs) game it was like a 10-,13-play drive and 90 yards for a touchdown. It’s gonna take that. Some dinking and dunking and then just progressively moving the ball down the field, collecting first downs and controlling the clock.”
The Patriots have benefitted from tremendous starts in each of their last two games, which historically has been an issue in their nine Super Bowl appearances during the Brady-Bill Belichick era. The Los Angeles Rams can jump on you in a hurry, so New England, of course, would be doing itself well by setting the tone early. And as Amendola touched upon, a death-by-a-thousand-cuts plan of attack might be the Patriots’ best option in hopes of tiring out Donald and Co.
But Belichick never has been afraid to go against the grain on Super Sunday, so don’t be shocked if the Pats get creative at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Thumbnail photo via Steve Mitchell/USA TODAY Sports