Merry Christmas Eve and a Merry Christmas to you all! I hope it is beautiful, fun, holly and jolly!
I will write up a quick preview of the players for the Patriots to watch during the Pats-Jets showdown on Sunday.
1. RB James White:
There is a very good chance the Patriots will play without WR Danny Amendola, so Brady will be down to one main starter at the wide receiver position and they will be going against a very good secondary. And, to top that off, Brady will be behind a shaky line against a very good pass rush, so he will need to get the ball out quickly. All of that adds up to Brady throwing screens, swings, and all the passes you can think of to James White. Deep, short, whatever, he will look to the back for the quick passes and he now trusts White fully and so does the coaching staff. White needs to deliver like Santa Claus.
2. OL Sebastian Vollmer:
He will face Muhammad Wilkerson and the very tough pass rushers for the Jets. Wilkerson was in on a sack against Brady last time the two played and I’m sure he will do his best to knock number twelve back on the ground. Vollmer is the leader of that OL and he needs to start playing like it and set the tone early. He has to focus in on the best pass rusher and shut him down if the Pats want to win without any wide outs.
3. WR Brandon LaFell:
The top three matchups featured all defensive players, so today the top three players will all be on the offensive side of the football. LaFell will be the only wide out that is a starter on the field Sunday for Brady, plus Gronk at tight end, but the only wide out which can make things easier for the Jets to focus in on the tight end. LaFell has to step up and stop dropping passes and start fighting for the football. He also has to be quicker at getting open as Brady doesn’t have the time to wait for him. LaFell caught 4 passes last week for 88 yards, the 88 yards is good but not the four passes. He needs to catch at least six to give his team a chance. He needs to be so much better than he has been. LaFell almost cost the Patriots in the first meeting with the Jets when he dropped six or seven passes. He must be better.