No one is expecting the Patriots to abandon the passing game. In 2012, Tom Brady passed for at least 280 yards in 10 out of 16 games. His lowest total was 223, in a game in which the Patriots picked off the Broncos for 205 combined rushing yards by Stevan Ridley and Brandon Bolden.
Looking back in history, Wes Welker was an undrafted player picked up by Miami who in his first two seasons combined for 96 receptions. In his first season with New England he racked up 112 receptions and would have at least 111 receptions in five of his next six seasons. This is one example of a player who prior to coming to New England was not highly sought-after. Now, heading into 2013, Welker was replaced with the oft-injured Danny Amendola, Brandon Lloyd (their “deep threat”) was replaced by rookie Kenbrell Thompkins;Danny Woodhead was replaced by 2011 second-round pick Shane Vereen and Aaron Hernandez is being replaced with undrafted rookie Zach Sudfeld.
Nevertheless, the 2013 Patriots in Week Two are looking drastically different. The skill position depth chart is as follows:
What can we expect the Patriots to do against the New York Jets on Thursday Night Football? Tom Brady is going to shred the Jets. There were some miscues with the Thompkins/Brady connection against the Bills, as Brady attempted 14 passes but Thompkins only came up with four catches for 42 yards. Brady will again attempt to get the ball his way early on in the game. This will only open up the floodgates for Julian Edelman, the former Kent State University quarterback. Brady will carve up the Jets defense with short passes to Edelman that he will turn in to huge gains as the defense focuses on Brady’s other weapons.
Tom Brady – 25 for 38, 270 yards, 3 TD’s, 1 INT
Stevan Ridley – 16 carries for 64 yards
LeGarrette Blount – 12 carries for 50 yards
Julian Edelman – 12 receptions, 112 yards, 2 TD’s
Kembrell Thompkins – 6 receptions, 80 yards
Michael Hoomanawanui – 8 receptions, 50 yards, 1 TD
Don’t forget to check back at RotoBaller.com this weekend for any last minute fantasy football analysis & updates, Monday night matchups, and our suicide pool pick of the week. Good luck with your decisions in Week Two!