Monday Night Farce: The Patriots' Impending Collapse

Mark ScacewaterAnalyst ISeptember 27, 2007

Icon Monday night's exciting matchup features two teams that seem to be headed in opposite directions.

The Patriots are 4-0 and destroying their foes. The Bengals are reeling from losses to Cleveland and Seattle.

Logic would dictate a Cincinnati loss, but I see a major Bengals victory on the horizon.

Tom Brady and Randy Moss have struggled in the passing game this year, with Brady’s numbers an abysmal 70-88 for 10 TDs and one INT.

How much worse can it get for Brady? He's only projected to complete 373 of 469 passes with 53 TDs and five INTs on the year.

What a terrible season to look forward to. I can’t imagine the Patriots keeping a QB like that through Week Six.

I've already heard rumors in Boston that Brady will be traded, along with Laurence Maroney and Richard Seymour, to the San Francisco 49ers for Trent Dilfer and a seventh-round pick.

The sticking point right now seems to be that the Niners don't want to part with the seventh-rounder.

IconAnd don’t even get me started on Moss. Whether it’s his outlandish touchdown celebrations or the divisions he's caused, the wide receiver was obviously a horrendous addition for the Pats.

It's clear that Moss has lost a step. Look at his pathetic numbers—22 receptions, 403 yards, five TDs (in four games), and a meager 18.3 yards per catch.

His projected numbers for 2007 are 117 receptions for 2,149 yards and 27 TDs. Why in the world would New England have thought it wise to pick him up?

Now I understand why Brady threw a tantrum when he had to rework his contract so Moss could fit in under the cap.

As for the game—I earnestly believe New England will have trouble moving the ball against the Bengals' amazing secondary. I mean, they held the Cleveland Browns' juggernaut offense to ONLY 51 points.

Derek Anderson, whom I hear has already been inducted into the Hall of Fame, was limited to five touchdown passes. Never mind that Derek had only thrown five TDs in his CAREER prior to that game—the Cincinnati D is special.

I see the Bengals picking off the unsteady Brady at least four times, and forcing the Patriots into a myriad of turnovers. Moss will lose his cool AGAIN and probably be ejected from the game...while Bill Belichick ponders retirement from the sidelines.

Expect a 35-0 shutout, with Brady finishing the night on the bench in favor of Matt Cassel.  

In the aftermath of the defeat, the Patriots will feel the need to make some personnel moves. Here are a few possibilities:

Trade Scenario #1: Tom Brady, Randy Moss, and two future first-round picks go to Oakland for Daunte Culpepper. 

Rationale: Brady and Moss just aren’t working out, and the Patriots need a savvy veteran presence in their locker room. Oakland won’t budge for less than the two future first-rounders, especially with the success Culpepper had in Miami.

Trade Scenario #2: Seymour, Maroney, Brady, and Donte Stallworth head to Seattle for Charlie Fry and a box of Seattle’s Best coffee. 

Rationale: The “big-name” players for the Patriots are bringing the team down with their egos, while Fry is a selfless QB who can bring a steady presence in the locker room. The coffee is an added bonus.   

Trade Scenario #3: Patriots cut Brady, then trade Adalius Thomas and a first-rounder to the Chiefs for Brady Croyle 

Rationale: The Patriots believe Herm Edwards made a grave error in appointing Damon Huard the starter in KC, and in Croyle they see a much more accomplished QB than the untrustworthy Brady. Thomas has proved to be the worst free-agent signing in recent history. Croyle’s on-field exploits at ‘Bama made the first-rounder necessary.