Jerod Mayo is done playing football this season, at least that’s the word from Yahoo! Sports. Mayo may be done, but make no mistake about it, the Patriots will keep kicking so long as Tom Brady is their quarterback.
True, the New England Patriots have suffered more than their fair share of injuries, and that’s in addition to the Aaron Hernandez situation. Still, the NFL is about throwing the ball and stopping the opponents’ passing game. The Patriots may not be able to stop anyone with a suspect defense, but Tom Brady can pass the ball to anyone, including the Patriots’ current group of no-name receivers.
Obviously, we can’t have a discussion about the New England Patriots without mentioning the genius that is Bill Belichick. Okay, maybe that was a little bit over the top, but the point stands. Belichick knows how to make his roster work for him. In the past, Belichick has gotten creative with his personnel in times of injury induced shortage, and there’s no reason to believe he’s lost his ability to make the most of the least.
There’s no doubt that the Patriots will miss Jerod Mayo. Mayo is on the field at all times for the Patriots’ defense, and he carries the responsibility of conducting the Patriots’ huddle. His ability on the field may well be missed as much as his leadership in the huddle. Mayo is a player whose talent can be replaced on the field, at least to a point, but his knowledge and adjustments simply can’t be replicated on such short notice.
At 5-1, the Patriots don’t exactly have a stranglehold on the AFC East, but there’s also little reason to believe that the rest of the division can catch up to their level, even if the Patriots do have to suffer the loss of offensive and defensive playmakers like Jerod Mayo.
The AFC East isn’t a weak division. In fact, it’s a pretty competitive group of teams through and through, but it’s also only host to one elite team, and that is the Patriots. We’ve been hearing for some time that Player X’s injury is the straw that broke the camel’s back, but time and time again we see the Patriots bounce back. This is the same story, different chapter.
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"The Patriots may not be able to stop anyone with a suspect defense"
Not true. Maybe the past few years, but not this year. The Patriots are winning with defense. They are 4th in the NFL in points against and only 22nd in points scored. Having Brady always gives you a chance to win, as evidenced by Sunday's outcome, but the defense is the reason the Pats are 5-1.