Even New England Patriots' Clouds Have Silver Linings

Gary WolffContributor IIDecember 29, 2008

After a courageous and exciting regular season, the Patriots fall victim to an imperfect system of promoting the best teams to the postseason and must sadly go home early.

Disappointing. Very, very disappointing. However, the team and the fans can hold their heads high and look forward to a very bright future.

Here are a few benefits and/or simple pleasures of the misfortune:


1. Brett Favre will finally retire.

2. Eric Mangini is unemployed.

3. New York fans are disgraced and miserable.

4. The Patriots players will have some time to rest, heal, and spend time away from football.

5. Matt Cassel got his chance to shine, and shine he did.

6. The Patriots' defensive backups and rookies got a lot of playing time, ensuring the defensive front seven will be a force to be reckoned with next season.

7. Josh McDaniels got tested and came through like a champion.

8. The offensive line showed their excellence and honed their teamwork.

9. Bill Belichick once again displays he is the dominant coach and dominant football mind of his time.

10. Junior came back to the playground and we all enjoyed that. Hopefully he sticks around.  Rosie too.

11. The chip the team needs to have on its shoulder is clearly defined and ready to be toted around next season.

12. My vague argument of how I believe Favre isn't and hasn't been a great quarterback was encapsulated for all loyalists to undeniably see.

13. The shameful demise of the Jets will deflate the energy towards the new stadium and could help shape the endeavor as a financial noose around the necks of the New York teams.

14. Gholston was a ghost, and Mayo was a superstar.

15. The worst possible scenario that could have possibly occurred when the Jets cut loose Pennington and acquired Favre came to fruition, which will cause pain and suffering for New York fans for the rest of their lives.