The Patriots faster-than-the-speed-of-sound offense has been a hot topic around New England over the last few days, and it's gaining national notice too.
Ross Tucker of NBC's Sports Talk was on with CSNNE's Bob Neumeier to talk about the offense, and count Tucker as a fan.
"Well I think it's pretty awesome, and it's really interesting to me, Bob, how the last couple of years a lot of the concepts of college have actually come to the NFL. It uses to always be the opposite way, it used to be always that everything would trifle down.
Tucker said the Pats are "not afraid to beg, borrow, and steal from other successful collegiate organizations"
But just how good does Tucker think the Pats offense is? They broke records in 2007 . . . but are they better than that?
"I think this is the best Patriots offense I've ever seen. I know that will give a couple people pause, but they really have everything."
Tucker defends his point by saying that the Pats were a great offense last season and added a "dynamic running game and deep threat in Brandon Lloyd.
Speaking of receiving threats, Wes Welker may have ruffled a few feathers with his joke about Belichick, saying that it's "always nice to stick it in Bill's face" when talking about his production in Sunday's win over the Broncos.
"There's always a little bit of truth to sarcasm," Tucker said.
But he also says that Welker should be on the field as much as possible.
"If the Patriots lose any games when they're not playing Wes Welker pretty much full time I think they're opening themselves up to a tremendous amount of criticism from folks like me."
HOUSTON -- If Jimmy Garoppolo is destined to be a starting quarterback down the line, he showed one quality after the game that would seem to indicate he's just about ready.
He was accountable.
The strip-sack that nearly decapitated him and gave the Texans possession? On him.
"The o-line did a great job tonight," Garoppolo said. "The sack-fumble was my fault. Can't let that happen . . . I'm the quarterback. It's just -- it's my fault."
His pick in the fourth quarter, a strange throw on the run that was out of reach for tight end Jacob Hollister? Well, yeah, no one else to blame there.
"You just gotta throw it away," he said. "Put more on it. Don't even give the guy a chance to do that."
It wasn't all ugliness in preseason game No. 2 for Tom Brady's backup. He hit DJ Foster on a quick toss over the middle that turned into a 25-yard touchdown. He climbed the pocket and drilled Austin Carr for a first down in the third quarter that started a streak of six straight completions, ending with Foster's score. He established chemistry with tight end James O'Shaughnessy, who had to sit during last week's game with the Jags. And he did it all behind the likes of Cam Fleming, Cole Croston, Jamil Douglas and James Ferentz.
One of Garoppolo's best plays of the night actually came on a sack. But instead of taking a vicious blow -- like the one he absorbed on the strip-sack -- he got on the ground just as the Texans were bearing down on him. He lived to see the next down, using an on-the-field awareness that may be tough to sharpen during practices when quarterbacks wear red jerseys and aren't allowed to be touched.
No, the final line wasn't sparkling, as it was a week ago. Garoppolo was 15-for-23 for 145 yards, a touchdown and an interception. He missed throws to O'Shaughnessy, Carr and Dion Lewis. He was nearly picked on a Brandon Bolden wheel route.
But the accountability Garoppolo showed after the fact is the kind of thing that doesn't go unnoticed by teammates, and it's one of the reasons he'll already have them won over if he ever gets another chance to start.
HOUSTON -- Though Tom Brady played just 17 snaps on Saturday against the Texans, and though he got his offense into the end zone just once in an abbreviated night of work, his team's second preseason game served as a reminder that the Patriots have a surplus of weaponry.
Rex Burkhead and Dion Lewis looked dynamic. Rob Gronkowski impacted coverage even when he wasn't targeted. Brandin Cooks was in uniform for the first time and caught a pass from Brady. Malcolm Mitchell saw plenty of work with Jimmy Garoppolo. James O'Shaughnessy looked like a viable third option at tight end.
That's not even mentioning players like James White, Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, Danny Amendola and Dwayne Allen (all of whom are healthy) or Mike Gillislee (who is still working his way back from injury).
The variety of options Brady can lean on in a given week, the matchups he and Josh McDaniels will try to dictate by using certain personnel groupings and formations, will be an every-evolving storyline over the course of the 2017 season. And Brady knows it.
"I think that’s what makes a great offense, having a lot of versatility," Brady said after the game. "I’ve said for a long time, I throw where the guys are open. If they double someone, everyone else is singled across the board, so you’ve just got to be careful about who you double. If we’ve got the right play call against a certain defense, it’s tough to stop us.
"We were decent out there, obviously had quite a few mistakes we’ve got to clean up, but it’s a good defense. We’re going to see them quickly. We had a good week of practice against them. It was a lot of fun . . . It will be a little bit different next time we play them."
Next time Brady and the Patriots see the Texans will be in Week 3, which will pit one of the league's most amorphous offenses against one of its best defenses.