‘sup Benny Gloves checking back in.
Ur boy Benny had a few more thoughts that didn’t really fit in the Super Bowl LII preview column. But let’s keep the hype train rollin’ until kick-off at 6:30pm.
Seems strange to say that for two teams that have collectively lost their #1 WR, playmaking LB, starting LT and an MVP caliber QB, they are both pretty healthy. Not really any lingering “will he be ready to go” issues for either team.
If I am the Eagles what am I most nervous about? Not really having a plan to stop Gronk. Malcom Jenkins is a pretty good safety and for the most part the Eagles like to leave him 1 on 1 with the opposing TE’s. The Eagles were an average DEF covering TE’s but some of the better playmakers at that position had good games against them Gronk is the best playmaker at that position. 1 on 1 doesn’t work with Gronk. Doubling him is really going to force them to do things they don’t normally do and will open the door for one of NE’s other OFF weapons.
If I am the Patriots what am I most nervous about? My Linebackers, plain and simple. As detailed yesterday they struggle in coverage. JAX’s Corey Grant was 3 for 3 for 59 yards in the AFC Championship game, and PHI’s Corey Clement will play that role this week. NE was finally able to figure out how to contain JAX in the second half, but they can’t leave those LB’s exposed. Patricia and Belichick’s track records suggest that they will come up with something, but at what cost? This group of LB’s is lacking, can you hide them, and if so where else will that leave you exposed?
What about Nick Foles? Doesn’t he make you nervous?
Sure but he certainly wouldn’t be the worst QB ever to win a Super Bowl. His half season with Chip Kelly proved he can do some things. Also when he is going well, he is actually pretty careful with the football and isn’t likely to take a ton of sacks. PPP thinks the biggest concern with Foles is that he looks his best when you are able to game plan him into easy reads, hence all the RPO’s. Does an offense based on giving your QB the easiest reads possible sound like one that will succeed against a Belichick/Patricia DEF that has had two weeks to prepare?
PPP is on record as being impressed with PHI coach Doug Pederson. But one quick red flag, he does come from the Andy Reid coaching tree and already has one terrible example of end game clock management on his resume in the playoffs (as OFF Coordinator for KC) against the Patriots no less.
The Fix is In
PPP read elsewhere this week that the Officiating crew that will be handling the Big Game is not one that is known for throwing a lot of pass interference flags. Not only would this be conducive to ur boy Benny’s style of CB play from back in the day but expect this to be used by certain elements of the national media as either exhibit A for letting the Pats get away with murdering the Eagles WR’s or clear interference from the league office when suddenly Brandin Cooks is drawing drive extending flags left and right.
Obligatory Local Media Angle
Let PPP be the next in a long line to pass along the fact the Phillip Dorsett has looked phenomenal in the two weeks of practice leading up to the Super Bowl. No PPP doesn’t think he will suddenly become a focal point of the offense, because in the immortal words of AI, “we talkin’ bout practice!” But PPP does expect the Pats to try something with him, a double move, or a flea flicker or even a reverse. After all he is #explosive a long time favorite trait of PPP (also reserve PPP a seat on the Dorsett breaks out next season train). If nothing else all the publicity he has gotten for being a practice hero will certainly require PHI to account for him if he gets on the field, so he will make good use as a decoy. PPP salutes you, local media, for being an effective tool of Belichick’s propaganda and forcing PHI to worry about a guy who caught like 12 passes all season.
Fair and Balanced
PPP feels like it should say something else negative about the Patriots. So here it goes. Cooks has had a tendency to disappear for games at a time, what if he picks today to no show? Chris Hogan still hasn’t looked right post injury. Fletcher Cox >Joe Thuney David Andrews and Shaq Mason. Is LaAdrian Waddle healthy or is Cam Fleming up to the task because PHI can bring heat from the Edge as well. Malcom Butler has been very burnable all year. What if Gronk takes another hard shot to the head? And lastly what if Max Kellerman is right and Tom Brady hits the wall suddenly and immediately during the game today, I mean he is 40 (😉)?
Hall of Fame<
PP has no beef with those that got in this year. Special congrats to the absolutely transcendent Randy Moss. But Ty Law deserves a gold jacket.
PPP mentioned this before as well but we really feel like prop bets are having their moment this year. Everyone is talking about them. I am telling you, Super Bowl Squares better watch its back.
Also put PPP squarely in the no cold weather Super Bowls camp.
Bonus MVP Pick
Since Le Cap asked, PPP believes that either Nick Foles or Tom Brady will likely win MVP depending on which team wins. But picking Tom Brady or really any “QB against the Field” is no fun. And what is the Super Bowl if not fun. It’s a big, bloated truly uniquely American “Holiday” and for gods sakes can Washington DC finally get its act together and declare the Monday after it a national holiday. And so, in that spirit I pick Chris Hogan as MVP. Reports are he finally looks healthy and is”a big part of the game plan” who will be filling a lot of the Julian Edelman type routes role. We have seen Brady zero in on certain receivers as a string of Pats pass catchers have had record breaking catch totals in the Big Game. Also he is versatile enough to have a long game breaking type of TD that will get the attention of MVP voters. So why not him? Plus he played college lacrosse, not sure if that has ever been reported anywhere.
Hope you all enjoyed reading these PPP’s as much as I enjoyed writing them. Watch for some exciting off season stuff from PPP. 6:30 can’t get here fast enough.