The more things change, the more they stay the same. The possible loss of ninety percent of last seasons production in the passing game have many wondering, some contemplating, and the natives restless of what this new-look New England Patriots offense in Foxboro might resemble. “Too many kids” is the overwhelming thought from some expert opinions.They will not grasp the playbook or hold up to Tom Brady‘s demands of perfection they say.
Still to this day after eleven full season played and proof that lies in the print of history through his tenure, doubts about Brady’s greatest asset still lingers, which is stunning.
Before moving forward lets take a step back in time for a moment. Peel back the layers of the 2006 season which feels like a distant memory that few remember with great accuracy. This was not the flashy 2007 season when Brady set the record books ablaze for 50 touchdown passes and only eight interceptions for a staggering 6.25-1 ratio, but rather a season where the numbers will not be able to give true appreciation for the way he steered the franchise to one of his seven AFC Championship game appearances and a near two minutes from what would now be his six Super Bowl appearances instead of five.
Ask a casual fan “quick… who was the leading receiver in 2006 for the Patriots?” Odds are good they have no clue it was Reche Caldwell — yes, Reche Caldwell. Go a little further and ask who played the other outside receiver position and you might wait until the classified files on JFK are released in 2032 before someone throws out the name Doug Gabriel. No quarterback in the history of this game has done more with less, of the three rings Brady has, not one player from any of those offenses will wear a yellow jacket in Canton. Find me another quarterback that can make that claim. While you’re looking, I’ll continue.
Tonight when the Patriots take the field at Lincoln Financial Field you will hear normal pre season talk about the quarterback needing to build trust and timing with said receivers and whether or not the rookies such as Dobson, Boyce, Thompkins, and Sudfeld can do the little things required in this offense to be successful, little things that failed with pick ups Chad Johnson, Joey Galloway and Chad Jackson. The beginning of this journey for most teams ultimately ends with false hopes of a trip to Metlife Stadium this February, for New England their opportunity lies not with the rookies but instead with Brady.
That asset thing I alluded to earlier… you see, Brady has the ability to make those around him better, to perform at a level they never thought they could or a level most think they should not. By seasons end odds are good multiple rookies will have many saying “I didnt see that coming” but for those who truly understand what the Patriots of the past twelve campaigns have proven time and time again, the goal every year as long as Brady is pulling the trigger will always be Super Sunday, and a new season that follows one that ended in January is not about revenging that previous disappointment but reckoning the next one.