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The source for back issues of Staying Patriotic.

For 12/1/2007

Working Hard or Hardly Working

In the case of Sunday's Eagles at Patriots it's more like Working Hard AND Hardly Working. It's clear that the Eagles came to play, but the Patriots? In last week's article I predicted a victory by a wide margin thinking that with McNabb out of the game there was no way that Westbrook could fight the good fight for 60 minutes. Man was I wrong. I was surprised at the toughness of Westbrook throughout the game. Between his performance, consistent coverage on Moss and decent protection for Feeley it was definitely "Game On."

That being said there were definitely some high points for the Patriots. Wes Welker set career highs for receptions and receiving yards and Laurence Maroney ran in number two for the season. Well, I think the importance of Maroney's TD comes more into play in my decision on what to do with him in my Fantasy league then his overall contribution to the team this year. But, I digress. CBSSportsline.com feels that Randy Moss had an "Off Day," but I definitely don't feel the same on that one. It was great to watch Randy Moss run routes under tight coverage, knowing he probably wasn't going to get his regular amount of touches, for the sake of the team and still be smiling at the end of the game.

The funny thing is though, that even though the Pats were definitely not bringing their "A" game it was enjoyable to ride the roller coaster with them on Sunday night. After all, it could have been worse, right? You could have been a Giants fan and had to watch the sheer horror of Manning running 26 yards in the wrong direction. In our case, one man's horror is another's ecstasy.

The thing I'm getting sick of hearing about, is the so called "Template for Victory," that the Eagles have developed. You and I know that Belichick buttoned up most of the issues we saw on Sunday during this week's practice. Which brings us to Baltimore on Monday night. I definitely think this is going to be Randy's chance to make up for his lack of numbers against the Eagles and show Ron Jaworski how much his opinion is worth. The same should hold true for Welker, Stallworth, Watson and the rest of the Wide Receiver squad. With Baltimore's Run Defense being third in the league, you can make the same prediction that I can... I think it's going to be a quiet week for Maroney and Faulk.

Lastly, since the title of this column is "Staying Patriotic," I would like to briefly comment on the stunning decision to not play the National Anthem before Monday's game. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello stated that "it was a decision made under extremely difficult circumstances and that we don't anticipate this happening again." Wow, weather a difficult circumstance? Interesting statement to make in a post 9/11 world, don't you think?

Go Pats!