Pete Carroll passed again when he should have run, but the New England Patriots couldn’t make him pay this time. The result really stings, but man what a game that was. To even have the game come down to one play as the end was an incredible result considering what the Patriots had to overcome.
Think about it. If we had any competent kicker in the NFL, we win that game. A 51 yard field goal isn’t easy obviously, but if you are paid to kick field goals for a living, you are expected to hit that. Had that been good, the score is 35-33, and we’d be in Nick Folk range (pretty much anything from 40 yards and under). Assuming he hits it, it’s 36-35 Pats, game over.
Another play that didn’t really seem vital at the time was the failed two point conversion when the score was 28-23. If they get that, then it’s 35-32, Folk boots a field goal, and we are probably watching overtime football right now.
A lot had to go right for the Seattle Seahawks to pull this one off ultimately. They barely escaped with a win, which is a really encouraging sign if you are a Patriots fan. Seattle may have lost half of their defense tonight, but with Bobby Wagner and Jamal Adams running rampant on the same team, that’s going to be a good defense every time. And even with them in, Cam Newton was absolutely tearing apart that defense at the end. This offense has some legitimate potential if Newton can stay healthy, and it’s going to be exciting to see where he can take this team.
It’s fascinating because tonight showed a complete role reversal. It was expected for the defense to hold the new offense in games, and hopefully allow them the time to make the plays needed to win. But the defense was bad tonight, especially the secondary, which is more concerning. Obviously it has to be taken with a grain of salt considering the sheer talent of Russell Wilson, but he was getting pretty much whatever he wanted for the majority of the game. Two busted coverages led to easy scores for Seattle, and you have to think they will be able to fix this issue, considering that most of the players are returning from last season. Hopefully we can look back on this defensive performance as an outlier and see them bounce back next week.
Overall, this was an encouraging performance tonight for the Patriots. I think that Newton has proven he has what it takes to lead this offense and they should open up the playbook a bit more. Everyone who knows anything about football knew what was coming on the final play, so it’s not surprising that they got stuffed, which is frustrating. However, its an early season loss, and provides a great place for the team to build off of, so we can let this one slide for now and move on.
(Originally posted on September 20, 2020)