New England Patriots: 2008 Preview

Jeremy RhodesCorrespondent IMay 25, 2008

From Undefeated to their loss in Super Bowl XLII to Spygate scandal, Matt Walsh to great draft picks, the New England Patriots are the most talked about and talented franchise in the NFL, period.

Just when you think these guys can finally cease from having a great season, they prove you wrong. Many of you would immediate jump to the name "cheaters."

Well, regardless of what happened with the entire media-hungry story known as Spygate, I don't care. Whatever happened will not happen this year. For the remaining 31 teams, take it out on the field. That's all I'm going to say about that.

David Tyree robbed them of their perfect season from a catch he'll never make again. Now what is left after the carnage of free agent movements from the team, the secondary, the offense, and linebackers have all been downgraded and upgraded at the same time.

We will soon find out if Randal Gay and Asante Samuel play as great with their new homes after leaving such a powerhouse. As for the new DBs, Ellis Hobbs has taken over the role of the Pats' No. 1 corner. Rookies are also coming into the secondary.

Victor Hobson was picked up to fill in for Junior Seau's spot who came from the rival Jets, may actually make an impact to fill in the Linebacker depth.

Fernando Bryant was also picked up and might even make even a good nickel package guy if he doesn't become a cornerback every down. All in all, the team is still stacked.

Now I will post my thoughts of their draft this year.

1. Jerod Mayo, LB, Tennessee: -A huge surprise, he was chosen over a corner but he is an instant starter in their mix. He is featured in the picture above and he brings all the intensity the team is looking for.

2. Terrence Wheatley, CB, Colorado: Yet again, a solid pick. I think he will be a good No. 2 later on in the year. I say he blooms late but the team smells no fear without Asante.

3. Shawn Crable, OLB, Michigan: Wow. I said all along this kid was better than third round, but it still blows my mind he fell that far. He's an excellent pass rusher and is also capable of playing defensive end. Having Thomas to learn from along with Vrabel, makes his chances of being a rough linebacker very favorable.

3. Kevin O'Connell, QB, San Diego State: I don't think anyone saw this coming. Something sparked the team's interest in him and decided to move up to get him. This must make Matt Cassel a little worried about his future with the team. He doesn't look like too bad of a backup for Brady until it's his time.

4. Jonathan Wilhite, CB, Auburn: I love this pick. He was a very good small corner from an SEC conference who had good recovery speed and quickness. He's a good choice in a late round.

5. Matt Slater, FS, UCLA: I don't know anything about him exactly. I do know he is a free safety who started for UCLA. He looks like he may be a really good special teams player.

6. Bo Rudd, OLB, Nebraska: You can never have too many linebackers. The defense is getting older and they needed more linebackers.

A lot of people are upset about how lucky New England may be. They had a lot of times they were held against the ropes and came through. As for their schedule this year, it feels like it may be a very easy one.

Now I'm going to make my predictions for their season.

Week 1. Chiefs at home W

Week 2 . At New York Jets W

Week 3. Miami At Home W

Week 4.  Bye

Week 5. At 49ers W

Week 6. At San Diego L

Week 7. Broncos at Home L

Week 8. Rams At home W

Week 9. At Colts L

Week 10.  Bills at Home W

Week 11.  New York Jets At Home W

Week 12.  At Miami W

Week 13.  Steelers at Home L

Week 14. At Seattle W

Week 15.  At Oakland L

Week 16. Cardinals at Home W

Week 17. At Buffalo W

New England Patriots Record 11-5, 6-0 Division

The Patriots lose a couple they shouldn't, but they remain in the playoff race.

Well, that wraps up this week's preview of the Patriots. We have one more in the AFC East. Next Week: New York Jets. Thanks for reading.



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