Now that Mac Jones is officially a Patriot let’s look at the big picture. The Patriots have many holes to fill. Defensively, they ranked 26th in 2020. They were one of the worst teams in the league in stopping the run. So where do they go from here? My guess is Bill Belichick will focus on the defensive line adding to the rotation. In this post, we will discuss three departments the team needs to restructure.
Middle Linebacker/Defensive Front
The good news is Donta Hightower is returning for the 2021 campaign. Other than that there is not much to get excited about. Edge rusher Josh Uche showed flashes of promise. Chase Winovich is gradually getting better. Number one pick Kyle Duggar has shown he can play. I personally feel they need to get more physical. Teams ran all over them last season, averaging 4.5 yards per carry. That statistic needs to improve.
New additions Henry Anderson, Davon Godchaulx, and Matthew Judon, and Kyle Van Noy will bolster the front seven. Stopping the run is priority number one in 2021.
Patrick Chung Retiring/McCourty Aging
In the off_ season safety, Patrick Chung retired. Chung was noted for his ability in stopping the run. Long time safety Devin McCourty a year older. Second_year safety Kyle Duggar is not ready to take over yet.
Replacing Julian Edelman
The biggest off season news was Julian Edelman announcing his retirement. Edelman is one of the greatest slot receivers in Patriots history. Known for his toughness,Edelman made one of the most clutch catches in Super Bowl history in the comeback win.
Two names to keep an eye on are Elijah Moore of Ole Miss and terrace Marshall Jr of LSu. Both receivers are excellent route runners with burning speed.
Poor execution was frustrating for Patriots fans. A 7-9 record is frustrating for Patriots fans But with the free _agent spending spree and new blood coming in,2021 will be an exciting year.
The Red Sox are off to a torrid start in 2021. Starting pitching will determine Red Sox’s success in 2021. Compared to last season the team has three dependable starters. The key element in the pitching will come from the fourth and fifth starters. Newly acquired Garrett Richards and Martin Perez round out the staff. In this post, we will review the organization’s starting pitching.
Five Quality Starters
In 2020, the starting pitching was non _existent. They shut down Chris Sale with Tommy John issues. Eduardo Rodriguez was out with Coved 19. This season Eduardo Rodriguez is 2-0 and healthy. Nathan Eovaldi is pitching well.
The latter part of the staff, Garrett Richards and Martin Perez have been inconsistent. Garrett Richards is struggling. Lefty Martin Perez has been OK. Prospect Tanner Houck is starting Sunday against Chicago.
Well Balanced Offense
In, 2021 the team’s 356 ERA is the fifth_ best in the league. Offensively, the club ranks first in the league in slugging percentage, OBP, and team average 273. They have 16 home runs, which are fifth in the league.
The offense will be a significant factor for the Red Sox this season. Third baseman Rafael Devers is one of the best hitters in the game. Designated hitter JD Martinez has gotten off to an excellent start. Manager Alex Cora has gotten huge contributions from Marwin Gonzalez, Alex Verdugo, and Christian Vazquez. Depth is essential for any hopes of making the playoffs.
The Red Sox are carrying 14 pitchers. In, 14 games the bullpen has been sensational. Veteran Matt Barnes has appeared in six _games and has a 0.00 ERA with 1 win and 2 saves. Rule 5 draftee Garrett Whitlock is turning heads. Whitlock was selected by the Red Sox from the Yankees in the Rule 5 draft. Veteran Matt Andriese has contributed significantly.
Any hopes of a deep playoff run hinges on the starting pitching. Offensively, they are the best in the league. With, Alex Cora at the helm, the future is bright.
The New England Revolution is gearing up for another championship run. After a heartbreaking loss 1-0 to Columbus in the 2020 finals, the club looks forward to 2021. Last season, the Revolution finished 8th in the East. After a thrilling 2-0 victory over the Philadelphia Union, fans left heartbroken in the finals. With some new faces, the team looks to pick up where it left off last year.
Depth On Defense
The organization added defender John Bell in the offseason. Bell was selected by the San Jose Earthquake, in the 2020 MLS Super Draft. He is extremely fast and has superior passing skills. He will provide solid depth to the defensive unit.
In other moves, the team added midfielder Lucas Felix, also known as Maciel. Maciel is from Brazil. He was a ten_ year veteran of the famous Botafogo soccer academy. He has a World Championship on his resume.
Also joining the team were midfielder Wilfred Khartoum. Kaptoum is a Cameroonian football player. He is experienced in the world soccer community with over 100 professional appearances. With all the off _season activity, the Revolution improved from last season.
Nucleus Is Still Together
With the off_ season additions, the club’s nucleus is still together. The group of Teal Bunbury, Gustavo Bou, Adam Buksa, Carlos Gil, Andrew Farrell, Matt Polster, Matt Turner, Taejon Buchanon, and Brad Knighton provide the skill and experience to be a serious contender.
The strength of this club is goalkeeping. The Revolution is blessed to have the league’s best goalkeeper in Matt Turner. Turner made 22 appearances in 2020. Overall, he posted an 8-7-7 record. He was also voted MLS player of the week three times. Reserves Brad Knighton and Earl EdwardsJr provide capable backup.
The difference between this year’s roster and last is its depth. The defense is vastly improved. With, two new mid _fielders the Revolution is in position to make a deep playoff run.