Letter to the Editor

Eversage's annual state of Patriots address

By Ben Eversage | Jan 21, 2013

Swanville — Editor's note: Ben Eversage of Swanville took the time to send the following to The Republican Journal in Belfast. So, we decided to share Eversage's thoughts.

As is my custom at the end of the New England Patriots' season following a final loss I offer to you my annual state of the Pats address to help me process my chagrin and disappointment.

There is a pattern here that I am seeing more clearly about the [Coach Bill] Belichick era that leads me to believe that this is as good as it will get. You're either a finesse team or a physical team. The Patriots are a finesse team. That works fine in the regular season but in the post season the more physical team usually wins. The three Super Bowl wins in the Belichick era were due to physical team play.

The Pats are finesse due, in large part, to the belief that brains or intelligence wins football games. The pure genius of Belichick will pull you through. This is the substance behind the Belichick myth making machine. The complexity of the offensive and defensive plays and sets will boggle your mind and you will succumb to the intellectual prowess of the Belichick master mind. Combined with the laid back surgeon-like affect of Tom Brady and you have a team devoid, in large part, of emotion and who believe that the following four qualities will win championships:

• genius

• talent

• preparation

• execution

It is said that offense wins games but defense wins championships. More specifically, genius, talent, preparation and execution will get you through the regular season but as evidenced [Jan. 20] there are two other factors that allowed the Ravens to win — emotion and physicality. The will to win fueled by raw emotion, combined with smashmouth, hard-hitting, in-your-face football can overcome genius, talent, preparation and execution.

I must admit, as much as I don't like the [San Francisco and Baltimore coaches Jim and John] Harbaugh boys personally, I do recognize that they are the current and future face of the NFL. Why? Because they have all six qualities of a winner. In addition to the Belichick formula they are animated with emotion and the eye of the tiger and they insist on and coach physicality, i.e. hard-hitting, one-on-one, bone-crushing football.

There is a seventh quality for success but it is fickle. It is luck. Luck is when opportunity meets preparation. If you've taken care of the first six qualities then you increase your chances for luck.

The Patriots are a bland, emotionless, lackluster football team. Their collective personality reflects Belichick's personality. The organization always mirrors the behavior of the kingpin. This is as good as it will get in the Belichick era. We have peaked. It is all downhill from here. It's been a great ride but we can't expect something out of Belichick and Brady that they are not. It is what it is.

Courier Publications sports staff can be reached by phone at 207-594-4401 or by email at sports@courierpublicationsllc.com.

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