BOSTON (CBS) — Training camp is in full swing and a new season has begun for the New England Patriots.
After falling to the Denver Broncos in the AFC Championship game last season, hopes are high following the off-season additions of Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner on defense and the return of Rob Gronkowski on offense.
Robert Klemko of The MMQB joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s The Adam Jones Show on Friday night, and shared his thoughts on the Patriots in the upcoming season. While many fans are feeling really good about the team, Klemko does say there are some question marks surrounding the team.
“A lot of people are seeing the return of Gronkowski as a cure-all, but in a lot of ways that success of the early Patriots teams had so much to do with a lot of weapons being available to Tom Brady,” he said. “When Gronkowski was back last season it meant a 20-30 percent difference in Red Zone efficiency. But getting up and down the field has a lot to do with slot receiver play, effective rushing and a short passing game, and that’s something the Patriots could still improve.”
On the defensive side, Klemko wonders if the Patriots will tip hand their in the preseason with how they’ll use Revis or wait until regular season.
While Revis not only shuts down the opponents top receiver, he also gives the pass-rush a little extra time to do their work. But Klemko is still curious if the New England pass-rushers can get to the opposing quarterback on a consistent basis in 2014.
“When you have Revis it’s like having an elite pass-rusher, because you can compensate on other areas on the field and leave that guy alone to do his work,” he said. “The one question mark I have about the Patriots is the pass-rush itself. Can the guys getting after the passer and do it on a consistent basis without leaving whoever the number two and three corner — whoever that ends up being — out on an island?”
Klemko also shares his thoughts on Roger Goodell’s two-game suspension of Ray Rice, and whether or not the league could have given the Baltimore running back a harsher punishment: