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Being a Patriots fans has it’s positives and negatives. On the good side, there are three championships and annually being a contenders in the National Football League. From top to bottom they are a perfectly run business. The problem? Growing attached to a New England Patriot never ends like you want.
The Pats understand that that NFL is a business. The emotional aspect does not play a factor in Foxboro. Even Randy Moss has predicted that this would be his last season, because that’s how the Patriots operate. They find the best players and coaches available and implement them to win championships, even if that means getting rid of stalwarts.
New England will get rid of players such as Richard Seymour, Mike Vrabel and maybe even Randy Moss and Stephen Gostkowski, in order to keep fighting long term for Super Bowls. It doesn’t matter if you helped them win a Super Bowl, are a perennial Pro Bowl member or even a former league MVP, no one is certain in Foxboro. It seems harsh, until you realize that it could be the best business plan in football.
LEARNING FROM HISTORY:
There is one thing that Cowboys, Broncos and 49ers have in common. They all had excellent runs in the 90’s, then fell off during the next decade. They built franchises on Super Bowl MVP Quarterbacks with Troy Aikman, Steve Young and John Elway. Then all three teams gave their QB’s the perfect sendoffs. However, none of the teams had backups that were of the same quality. Denver and San Francisco made playoff appearances under Brian Griese and Jeff Garcia, but the teams were never close to being Super Bowl bound. The Cowboys took over a decade before they were a title contender. By being emotional to their star players, they lost several years of competitive football.
San Francisco should have taken a page out of their book in the early 90’s. When Joe Montana was getting rusty and often injured the 49ers pulled the plug and went with Young, who was already starting at the time. Montana finished his career in Kansas City, even lead the Chiefs to a playoff appearance in 1994, the same year Steve Young and the ‘Niners beat the Chargers in Super Bowl XXIX. Even though Montana was a legend, San Francisco knew their best opportunity to win a Super Bowl again was to give Young the reigns and it paid off.
This is why it’s good to be a Patriots fan.
WELCOME TO THE GOOD LIFE:
Thursday, The Patriots tendered Stephen Gostkowski at the second round level. Meaning that if another team signs the Pro Bowl kicker, they in return will have to give the Patriots their second round draft pick, only. It does not seem like a fair deal at all. Gostkowski is one of the premier kickers in the league. Then consider that the Patriots will have four second round picks. DeSean Jackson, Eddie Royal and Matt Forte are all former second round selections. The second round is a breeding ground for first round talent at a much cheaper price, the way New England likes it.
For a while, it seemed that the Patriots were swaying away from their pattern when they signed Adalius Thomas to a five year $35 million contract with $20 million guarantees. New England never overpaid for players, no matter how valued they are. They let guys like Asante Samuel walk and traded Richard Seymour, before his contract expired. New England fans might want to see Julius Peppers, Karlos Dansby, Darren Sharper or Thomas Jones come to New England, but if the price isn’t right then they will pass.
The future isn’t secure for current stars, even Tom Brady. Remember back in the day when Drew Bledsoe was one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL? An injury gave Brady a chance and he ran with it. When he went down for the 2008 season and Matt Cassell shined, many wondered if Brady’s time was over in New England. Since then, Matt went to Kansas City, Brady returned and eventually found his old form. However, in this draft New England might be looking at a young quarterback you needs time to develop, (cough*Tim Tebow*cough) and build a foundation for the future. It was only two years ago when the Packers got rid of their future Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre in favor of Aaron Rogers becoming the main cheesehead I would say that worked out well for Green Bay.
In the upcoming weeks, New England might fill some needs by giving veterans the chance to win a Super Bowl. New England might look to Jason Tayor if Peppers price gets to high. Gregg Olsen could be a new tight end in favor of Ben Watson. Adalius Thomas might be sent to Seattle for a reunion with Deion Branch. Anything can happen with the New England Patriots. However, one thing is certain, they will put together one of the best teams they can, no matter what fan favorite gets cut in the process. Fans like me, would have it no other way.