Sunday was Patriots’ senior football advisor and offensive line coach Matt Patricia’s first regular season game calling offensive plays. To no surprise, it was an abject disaster – to put it bluntly. New England lost to the Dolphins 20-7, and offense was not impressive at all.
The Patriots threw for a measly 213 yards and turned the ball over three times on Sunday against a just above-average Miami defense. They also ran for just 78 yards on the ground. Not shockingly – the idea of a former defensive play caller and failed head coach all of a sudden calling an NFL offense didn’t go as planned.
This mess is not only the talk of the town, it’s the talk of the country. In fact, it’s such important storyline for the 2022 NFL season that our partners at BetOnline.ag have a prop bet posted for it:
Will Matt Patricia Call Plays All Year for Patriots?
Growing pains of a “new” offensive system are a weak excuse. This isn’t really a new offense. In fact – according to PFF, the Patriots ran outside zone just three times on Sunday. They only gained one total yard, but it’s not like these three plays hindered the outcome of the game.
I also don’t think this is entirely Mac Jones’ fault. Originally, on the strip sack, I thought it was a blitz that Jones should have be able to pick up and get himself out of trouble. However, during post-game, Bill Belichick alluded to the fact that Mac thought he had it picked up – taking the blame off of his young quarterback.
Sure – Jones has been pretty inconsistent so far, but it’s impossible to not be with the players and coaches around they’ve put around him.
So it’s not the new scheme, it’s not Mac Jones, so that leaves only one culprit: Matt Patricia. Patricia has been in the news quite a bit these last two days after it was reported that it was his decision to bench Kendrick Bourne against both the Panthers and the Dolphins. That’s it’s own story, and a crazy one at that, that I covered here.
As far as play calling goes, that’s just of a disaster as him making personnel decisions. Calling an offense in the NFL is obviously not an easy task to take on. You need to have a feel for the game flow, the clock, your players, and any situation you may run into.
Patricia has never done this before – so realistically he shouldn’t be expected to be good at it. This entire thing is a top-down mistake from Belichick, and frankly something’s going to have to change if they want to have any success on offense in 2022.
Unfortunately, I don’t think it will happen this season. “No” at +150 may be worth the plus-money bet, but I don’t trust Bill to go against his own ego here.
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