New England Patriots 2010 NFL Projection:
"SWOT analysis" of the 2010 Patriots (including strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and
threats) followed by the FootballLOCKS.com classic schedule analysis
and a record projection summary.
QB Tom Brady, head coach Bill Belichick,
receiver mix of Randy Moss, Wes Welker (back from a torn ACL),
Julian Edelman (cast in the mold of a "Wes Welker"), impressive up and comer Brandon Tate,
rookie receiving TE Rob Gronkowski, pass blocking of offensive line,
third down play of RB Kevin Faulk,
free safety Brandon Meriweather, ILB Jerod Mayo,
and clogging ability of NT Vince Wilfork.
Defensive line depth (loss of defensive end Jarvis Green to Denver in free agency), defensive end Ty Warren out for the year with a labral tear,
running back consistency (Fred Taylor, Sammy Morris, Laurence Maroney have suffered from injuries and inconsistent play),
Randy Moss freezes up in cold weather games (has done so his entire career),
lack of a pass rush, linebacker experience, cornerback experience (Leigh Bodden out
for the season),
and poor kickoff coverage.
RB Fred Taylor's surgically repaired ankle (looks to have regained his old bounce),
rookie TE Rob Gronkowski proving to be a strong red zone target in preseason,
rookie TE Aaron Hernandez (perhaps a Dallas Clark like presence for Tom Brady),
rookie ILB Brandon Spikes looks beyond his years in preseason,
competition front (Jets CB Derrelle Revis' holdout would make life easier for the passing game).
Left guard Logan Mankins' Holdout,
offensive lineman Nick Kaczur's bulging disc (no timetable for return),
in division competition front (Miami's acquisition of WR Brandon Marshall,
the Jets' acquisition of WR Santonio Holmes),
and plethora of wild card playoff caliber teams or better in competition with the Pats
in the AFC heading into the '10 season
the New York Jets, Baltimore Ravens,
Cincinnati Bengals, Indianapolis Colts, Miami Dolphins, Pittsburgh
Steelers, Tennessee Titans, and Houston Texans.
Overall the Patriots will play 8 games against playoff teams from a year ago as follows;
Fortunately for New England, six of these contests are home games.
Unlike last season, their trip to playoff caliber Miami will be early in the season when the weather
may still be a factor. But on the flip side the Pats draw Miami at home in cold January.
There's no doubt that New England has one of the tougher schedules in the league.
Of the utmost importance is the health of key players Brady, Moss, Welker, and Wilfork.
Also key is the offensive line situation with holdout Logan Mankins.
With thin depth at defensive line, the Patriots need to get a big contribution from
another area of the defense, whether it be inside linebacker with Mayo and Spikes,
or young players in the secondary.
Our season forecast
calls for a record of (9-7), a slight downgrade based on recent defensive weakness
here in preseason.
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Free 2010 NFL Predictions Note:
Remember these now archived 2010 NFL record forecasts were made
during the 2010 preseason.
Of course many team components can alter throughout the yearly
football campaign which may have affected
FootballLOCKS.com's opinion of the outlook for any given team
at any point in the 2010 season.
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