Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Wasted Time: Trying to deal with Aqib Talib

For the second year in a row a integral part of the Patriots team has bolted for Denver. Last year Wes Welker left because his relationship with Bill Belichick had deteriorated. This year Aqib Talib chased a massive free agent deal to mile high. 

Talib has inked a 6 year 57 Million Dollar deal with the Broncos. That works out to 9.5 Million Dollars per year for a corner who has finished the end of the past two seasons on the sidelines with injuries. 

Personally I am not surprised Talib chased the cash. I am surprised Denver, or any team would offer him that much and for the years given the circumstances of Talib's history.

He was a model citizen in New England and did nothing but compete and bring tenacity and swagger to a secondary lacking both of those qualities. 

However a nagging hip injury has plagued Talib since his arrival in Foxboro. Robert Kraft himself eluded to the fact Talib hasn't been on the field in the biggest games of the year when discussing his future with the team at the Super Bowl. You know the Patriots brought that point to the negotiating table. 

Talib was likely offered a deal much like the one he turned down last year. 4-5 years for anywhere between 27-30 Million with over half guaranteed. A deal respectable for a guy who can be the one of the best in the league but with an injury history. 

Those figures are on par with what the corner market has been this year. The Patriots gambled that Talib would not find a better deal elsewhere; and they lost.

Denver was willing to over-pay and give Talib a shocking pay-day.

What's more upsetting for New England fans is not Talib leaving, which cannot come as a surprise, but that in trying to deal with a player after the big cash, they let similarly talented if not better players come off the market for considerably less than what Talib was looking for. 

Alterraun Verner, considered a top free agent corner signed today with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for 4 years and 26 Millions Dollars, 14 guaranteed. The kind of deal you are used to seeing out of the Patriots. Once they realized Talib was not going to bite on their offer the Patriots should have turned right away to other options. Now, those other options are very, very limited, and the quality of player could be considerably less.

There is hope though. If the Patriots land Darrelle Revis; than all is forgiven. If the Patriots bring in a quality veteran, draft another corner, meanwhile signing a veteran pass rusher like Jared Allen; all will be forgiven. Pass rush can make up for coverage deficiencies.

But if nothing happens. If the Patriots take 15 Million Dollars of cap room and flush in on C level players and do not sign an impact free agent amid all of the players available to improve this team dramatically, there will be a multitude of criticism and it will be more than warranted.

The Patriots can still salvage this situation, but the clock is ticking. Everyone else is making moves, time for the Patriots to stop sitting back and get in the drivers seat!

And by the way...pay Julian Edelman, please! (more on that to come)

Aqib Talib Update

Multiple sources have been reporting throughout the early morning that the Patriots and Aqib Talib are "very close" to a multi-year extension ahead the new league year at 4:00PM when Talib would become and unrestricted free agent.

I will not be mad if the Patriots extend themselves for Talib. He is a elite level talent and has proven his worth for this team when he is on the field. Let me say that again. WHEN he is on the field. I have concerns about his injury history. However this is the NFL and anyone can get hurt anytime, whether they have a history or not.

I will be mad however if the Patriots stop there and fill out the rest of the defense with middling and third string players. An Edelman extension is also in the works and even with those two moves the Patriots would have cap room for an impact free-agent signing on defense. The name that comes to mind is Jared Allen.

Allen is a player who still competes at a high level, is a savvy veteran, and is hungry for a championship. That fits the Belichick mold. He may be willing to play for a little less to come and compete with a championship caliber team. His asking price should not be so high its out of the Patriots range. They would be wise to extend themselves and not let a player like that go to their rivals.

Allen and Talib both bring a certain swagger and intensity to the field that championship defense need, and always have. Don't look any further than last years Legion of Boom as an excellent example.

Free agency starts in less than 6 hours. Wouldn't it be great to know we'd being seeing both these reactions on the field for the Patriots Defense next season!?

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Patriots fall to Broncos 26-16

A lot to break down, discuss and analyze after this game but there is one simple truth that explains it all. The Broncos were a better team than the Patriots. If healthy this Patriots squad is formidable, but the depleted squad that took the field in Denver had to play perfect to give themselves a chance. That didn't happen.

I want your thoughts on this game and thoughts on the season as a whole! Send along your comments, email us at livethepatriots@yahoo.com and hit me up on Twitter @livethepats

Everything will be read on my Recap Podcast tomorrow!

It was amazing that this Patriots got this far in the first place considering all the off-season departures, Hernandez scandal, and once the season started loss of multiple Pro-Bowl  and starting players. Yet despite that they were playing for an AFC Championship. In my mind this was still an amazing season for this team.

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Pezz previews the AFC Championship game between the New England Patriots and Denver Broncos. It's Brady-Manning for the fifteenth time. It is the first time in history that Super Bowl winning Quarterbacks play in the AFC Championship game. It is sure to be an instant classic.

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