Patriots Mailbag ‘The Barth Bag’ Week 2

Welcome to Week 2 of 'The Barth Bag'. You guys submitted more questions than last week, but we start with Antonio Brown...

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Welcome to Week 2 of ‘The Barth Bag’. You guys submitted more questions than last week (which is shocking because absolutely nothing has happened since last Friday). From Antonio Brown, to the Dolphins, to around the NFL, this week’s mail bag comes fully loaded. Lets start, of course, with Antonio Brown…

This seems a bit lofty. We actually have a pretty good blueprint of what Antonio Brown’s role will be early on, based off of how the Patriots assimilated Josh Gordon last year. Given the weak opponent, I certainly think Brown has a chance to break a big play or two, but I doubt there’s enough for him in the playbook right now to warrant enough playing time for 250 yards and 3 TDs. That being said, here’s the statistical question I’ll pose for Antonio Brown…72 catches, 933 yards, 8 TDs. That is the combined numbers of players wearing 17 when Tom Brady is the Patriots quarterback. Can Brown single-handedly top those numbers this year?

There’s a good chance James White won’t travel following the birth of his son. However, given the Dolphins defense, Rex Burkhead could easily have six catches on his own. That being said, Brian Flores has a sneaky big advantage in this game being so familiar with the Patriots tendencies. Bill Belichick will need to go against some of those tendencies to win this game, and throwing Sony Michel the ball is certainly a mold-breaker.

The one unit that had a good game for the Steelers last week was the defensive front, and it showed against the run. The one thing I will say in Michel’s defense though, is that when they needed a yard, he got them a yard. He wasn’t breaking any big runs, but outside of one poor goal line sequence he picked up the short yardage when needed.

If the Patriots run away with this one on Sunday (which they should), there’s a very good chance we get an extended look at Stidham. When it comes to running up the score, I love Bill Belichick’s famous line of “It’s not my job to stop our offense”, but given his respect for Brian Flores and his other former co-workers now in Miami, I could see him letting off the throttle a bit if things get out of hand.

Good question here. There’s still a lot of football to be played between now and then, but as of right now I actually thing Lacosse is the odd man out. Izzo serves an important role as a blocking tight end, and saw a number of important assignments in that role last week. Lacosse has a role more similar to what Watson will bring, but he’s struggled to get on the field.

1. Ezekiel Elliot
2. Saquon Barkley
3. Christian McCaffrey
4. Alvin Kamara
5. Dalvin Cook (now that he’s healthy)

Papa Gino’s is still the “Official Pizza of the Patriots”, even with them closing some stores. However, if losing a few Papa Gino’s means we get to keep a few more D’Angelos, I’m all for it. Don’t get me wrong, Papas is great, but the Thanksgiving Toasted from D’Angelos is up there with the best sandwiches on the market today (I have it in a dead heat for the top spot with the Blackjack Club from The Good Food Store). We can’t risk the Thanksgiving Toasted going anywhere. And no, they don’t sponsor this mailbag, I’m just a fan and satisfied customer.

Thanks for checking out this week’s “Barth Bag”! Make sure to follow our coverage of this week’s Patriots game in Miami on Twitter @PatriotsCLNS. As always, you can submit your questions during the week on Twitter using the hashtag #BarthBag, and give me a follow @PatriotsCLNS.