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Sludge, the Patriots, Saltines, sausage

Monday 11/6/23

When I watch football this year, I see a lot of sludge. Little quality. Not much that stands out, team-wise. The game is changing some. Offense has been down from the start of the NFL season. It's not just the scores--you see less open field, fewer plays occurring in space where the ball carrier is galloping along. In recent years, better teams played shootouts. They're not playing shootouts anymore. When you see a big offensive output now, it's one better team against a weaker team. Look at the Dolphins--they only put up points against bad teams. They lost to the Chiefs yesterday 21-14. The Chiefs also only score against bad teams. A couple years ago, that game would have been 34-31. Sludge-y now.

Was asked yesterday after the Patriots' latest sorry--but entirely predictable--loss to the somehow somewhat less moribund Commanders, if New England will bring back Josh McDaniels.

I think the answer is both why and why not? Shouldn't bring him back right now with Mac Jones here. Why? Because Jones will get a small amount better, and that will make it more likely that the Patriots keep him. People really want him to be this thing that he isn't. Fans, Bob Kraft. The Patriots should cut Jones. Release him. Show that you're serious. Get him out of there. Physically, he's nothing. Mentally, he's nothing. He's also an infectant.

The Patriots' biggest problem right now is Bob Kraft. He's letting this all happen. Enabling it. He could stop what has been happening any time he wishes. He can't fix it any time he wishes, but nothing will get fixed until what this is comes to a halt anyway. Blow the coach out of there. Blow Bill O'Brien out of there. Blow Mac Jones out of there.

Try to get Vrabel from Tennessee, bring back McDaniels as OC--which I think is unlikely, because the guy can't want to come back again, especially now that this is just another team--and see if Mayo will stay on as DC, also unlikely. You're really quite far away from being good again. There isn't a player on this team who is a plus player who can't or shouldn't be replaced. The roster is an empty cupboard, save for this one sad box of Saltines that has five or six crackers left in the last of the plastic sleeves.

There's no need to include to Jones's stat line from yesterday. Same as usual, save with a lower completion percentage. Can't throw the ball. It was sixty and windless yesterday, and you could make an omelette while a Jones pass was hanging up in the air. People will say the game-ending interception wasn't his fault. Fine. But he tried to throw an interception the pass before when he threw one of his pop-ups to a spot on the field where no Patriots receiver was, either because he's just that dumb--possible--or was being pissy--also possible. In favorable weather, Jones doesn't have the arm. What would happen if the game mattered and it was January 4 and thirty-two degrees and the wind was whipping around? How do you think that'd go for him?

After the game I switched to the postgame show, but I can't last longer than two or three minutes with the likes of Michael Holley and Ted Johnson. These are dumb guys. Wasn't even three minutes this time.

Johnson started by saying how surprised he was by the outcome. He's a lug nut in human form. You're surprised, huh? That the bad team, with the nothing of a roster, with a bad coach who has shown he has no clue or command going on years now, with the quarterback with the worst arm in modern NFL history and who plays like he's alternately having a tantrum or a panic attack, that loses most of the time, lost the game? Took you aback, did it, professional football commentator who played in the NFL?

Right. That was mind-blowing. Whoa. Woke up wondering if it had really happened. Ted Johnson opens his mouth and it's like listening to a talking sausage. It's a wonder no one throws peppers and onions on him.

Anyway, this is perhaps the least interesting the Patriots have ever been. I think they were more interesting when they went 1-15 in 1990. Andre Tippett was still there. Irving Fryar (who always struck me as the Patriots' version of Oil Can Boyd). Grogan. I mean at least you could have watched to see how they were doing or because they'd been compelling before or were coming to the end.

Nabokov had that book, Speak, Memory. I admit, when I see Ted Johnson, I think, "Speak, sausage," and then he does, which I find more interesting than these Patriots. Blow it all out!


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