A 10-6 record and Wild Card Playoff birth would be enough to satisfy most NFL fans, in most NFL cities. However, for the New England Patriots and their fans it is somewhat of an under achievement. This is a great football team in almost every way, and the bar for them has been set very high. Sure they won their division, but a first round elimination at the hands of the Baltimore Ravens isn’t good, and given the fact that they lost that game 33-14 suggests that there is some work to do on this roster.
The 2009 Patriot offense scored 427 points or 26.7 points per game. That was good enough for the sixth best 2009 NFL offense. QB Tom Brady completed 65% of his passes and threw for 4,398 yards, 28 touch downs, with just 13 interceptions. WR Wes Welker caught 123 of those passes and Randy Moss caught 83. More impressive than that is six patriots caught 20 passes last year. On the ground they gained 1,921 yard led by Lawrence Maroney and his 757 yards.
On the other hand the Patriot defense gave up just 285 points, or 17.8/game, and that means they outscored their opponents on average by more than a touchdown. How they got blown out in the playoffs seems to lie with the late season injury to Welker. Otherwise this is a team that should have had a far better showing in 2009. All the numbers look good even their take away differential of +6 was 8th best in the NFL last year.
Given all these facts we have to conclude that the Patriots offense is too focused on one player. They could update their defense, but it seems they need a few more playmakers on offense. Maybe some help on the offensive line to help open up the running game some. The point here is there is no glaring need, but an opportunity to tweak the roster to get further in the layoffs in 2010.