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Patriots Blog: Gold Stars And Black Thumb Prints From Week 2

By Levan Reid, WBZ-TV Sports
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BOSTON (CBS) – We have some leftovers from this past weekends game against the Arizona Cardinals. Let’s get these out of the way and then look to Sunday night against the Baltimore Ravens.

Only a couple of gold stars in this game. You watched the same game I did and the Pats did not look good at all.

The Gold Stars:

Wes Welker gets a gold star. I don’t know what’s going on with Wes and the team but you can not tell me that Julian Edelman is a better wide receiver. I know the word is Julian has put his time in but that doesn’t mean he’s better. Wes didn’t get the start, finished with 95 yards and in the process broke the Patriots all-time record for receptions. The Pats are a much better team when he’s in the game. It’s really that simple.

Chandler Jones gets a gold star for the second week in a row. There were points in the game, that Jones disrupted sets of downs. He put pressure on the quarterback, caused holding calls and forced fumbles. This is two games in and he is certainly a difference maker.

Brandon Spikes gave the Patriots a chance to win the game and that’s why he gets a gold star. He put his helmet on the ball and Ryan Williams fumbled the rock and that gave the Patriots a chance. Spikes played inspired ball all game long also.

The Black Thumb Prints:

Whomever was protecting Tom Brady on the right side did a poor job and therefore they all get black thumb prints. Marcus Cannon was over matched and so was Donald Thomas. Brady was never comfortable out there and this is a major reason why the Pats had very little offensive production.

Michael Hoomanawanui gets a black thumb print. He came in to take over for Aaron Hernandez and he almost got Brady killed. He couldn’t secure the edge on a blitz and he couldn’t help the Pats gain yards in the running game. Not the effort expected.

Josh McDaniels gets a black thumb print. The play calling in this game was very suspect. He left the running game with Stevan Ridley too fast and stayed with it and Danny Woodhead too long. There were also points in the game that I thought the Pats were just forcing the ball to Brandon Lloyd. They were balanced week one. That was not the case against the Cardinals.

Special teams gets a black thump print. The kicking game was good until the end and the punt situation cost the Pats 7 points. Bill Belichick stressed special teams in the week leading up to the game but I guess his point never got across.

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