by Scott Benson, Patriots Daily Staff
October 11, 2009

Thoughts from a mile high…

  • The inactives will come in later than usual, I assume – but we know the Pats won’t have Fred Taylor of course, and James Sanders (10th in total defensive snaps; see below) has a bum shoulder that will keep him out. Joey Galloway will apparently be inactive again, according to ESPN. Is Galloway going to be the player released to make room for Junior Seau this week?
  • So that’s three of eight inactives already. Assuming the invisible duo (Ohrnberger and Simmons) joins them, now we’re at five of eight, and the chances are getting better and better that Jerod Mayo will play.
  • If he does, he will have completed his comeback from an opening night knee injury in just 26 days. Let that be a lesson to us the next time we’re on the ledge over this sort of thing. We don’t know, we can’t know, because nobody knows.
  • As noted above, the top eleven Pats defenders in terms of total snaps to date – LB Gary Guyton, 99% of all defensive snaps (226, by my count), CB Leigh Bodden, 95%, S Brandon Meriweather, 92%, CB Shawn Springs, 85%, LB Adalius Thomas, 82%, DL Jarvis Green, 79%, S Brandon McGowan, 69%, DL Ty Warren, 64%, DL Vince Wilfork, 62%, S James Sanders, 60%, DL Mike Wright, 59%.
  • Speaking of Mike Reiss (the above was based on his weekly totals), I’m enjoying those ‘Football Journey’ posts he’s been doing on his ESPN Boston Patriots Blog. So far, we’ve gotten back stories on some of the team’s lesser known players, like this one with rookie Myron Pryor. I’m looking forward to seeing how Pryor develops. In spots he’s looked like their quickest, most agile interior lineman, but you know how it goes with young players. They can always go either way.
  • Anyway, back to the above list; the first thing I see is the Pats getting a hell of a lot out of a second year guy who wasn’t even drafted, and the second thing I see is three 09 free agents dominating the secondary.
  • Bodden’s impressed me the most – he’s a tough, competitive guy, and it seems to me he’s making the receivers work all the way through their routes. Even when he’s put in the position of giving up that awful ten-yard cushion, he’s not making it easy. I’m already working up a “they gotta sign this guy” thing here, and we’re only at the quarter pole.
  • I’m such a Josh McDaniels fan that I’m actually happy that Denver is 4-0, but wait a minute – that’s stupid.  A good team in Denver has rarely been a good thing for the Patriots. So screw it – you’re on your own, McDisaster!
  • All week I’ve been figuring this as a tight game, so I’m going to stick with that. The reflex may be to think that Denver’s played nobody, and they’ll sink as soon as they do. I’m not ready to make that leap. I think they’ve already displayed a certain amount of toughness by going 4-0 after the off-season they (coaches and players) just had. They’re going to roll over at home, against the notorious Patriots, in one of the loudest stadiums in the league?
  • The Pats sailed through their recent home stand with flying colors, but today have to win their first road game in a city that has not typically been hospitable to New Englanders. Especially when it’s number two in total defense.
  • Still, the Pats defense will be no day at the beach for Kyle Orton, not if he has to string together 15 play drives to score. So there’s the crux of my ‘tight game’ theory – nothing will come easy for either side. If this game is decided before the 5:00 mark of the fourth quarter, color me surprised.
  • I like Tom Brady in those situations, by the way.
  • First appearance of the all-white road throwbacks today?

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