The Patriots’ offense isn’t as explosive as it’s been in previous seasons.
New England’s defense is elite, no matter how you slice it, and Tom Brady and Co. have shown they’re more than capable of making clutch plays late in games when the pressure mounts. As such, it would be unwise for teams to write off the Patriots’ offense despite its recent struggles.
One NFL executive put things into perspective and offered a warning of sorts when talking to The Athletic’s Mike Sando in wake of the Patriots’ 13-9 win over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday at Gillette Stadium.
“What you do all week in this league is you try to find weaknesses and then try to sell them to your players,” the executive told Sando. “You’d better not tell them you are going to go in there and kick Brady’s ass because he’s not what he used to be, his stats are down and the film shows him going down in a heap, pulling a string on the ball and sending it into the dirt.
“Don’t be fooled. This guy’s got a couple missed throws and they have had some issues weapons-wise where they are not quite as explosive, but this guy is completely deadly in two-minute of either half, four-minute and select times when they can really move the ball.”
Brady completed just 17 of 37 passes for 190 yards with a touchdown. The Cowboys actually had more total yards (321) than the Patriots (282), whose only touchdown came on the heels of a blocked punt in the first quarter that set up New England at Dallas’ 12-yard line.
Still, teams shouldn’t sleep on Brady, a six-time Super Bowl champion who has made a career out of silencing doubters, or the Patriots’ ability to right the ship offensively before the playoffs. After all, Bill Belichick’s bunch has a knack for making necessary adjustments and thriving in the face of adversity.