Rockroi

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  1. I went back and I rewatched a few of the episodes from Season 6 and realized that I was probably too hard on the show that season. I figured it was because Season 5 was so fucking terrible (and it was) that it clouded my judgement about the how in season 6. And not because the show is in the middle of an epic tailspin as the show runners are utterly hapless since the source material stopped and Martin has really stopped providing any support (ie: he stopped writing one episode a season years ago). No, not that at all. So, SEASON SEVEN! Here we… ohhh…. Fuuuuckkkk…. I’m not saying it was boring, but there was a scene this week where two characters LITERALLY watched paint dry… What I liked? Pod: Gonna start off slow here but I think Pod is looking less and less like some noble’s kid and more and more like a grizzled veteran. The actor is doing a very good job. The Queen and Her Consort: After an artist completes his depiction of the seven Kingdoms at Cersei’s feet, Cersei and Jaime engage in a moderately decent discussion of their situation: they are fucked. No heirs, no dynasty, no army, no Navy, no allies. But they have a plan in the Reavers of Pyke. Kinda. See, turns out that although we had to watch that BS last season… somehow… it didn’t count. Because… reasons? Any explanation? Anyone going to tell the viewer how it happened or why or … anyway, doesn’t matter. What matters is that the show, after telling us how pathetic and weak House Lannister is, wants us to fear House Lannister. Not sure how we can do that. Regardless, watching Jaime and Cersei interact was … fine. I understood their issues; I got why they were screwed and Jaime seemed both smart and capable. The Citadel: Epically stupid… BUT … well done. Great acting on everyone’s part, good filming; I thought Sam seemed both distressed AND focused. There was nothing approaching wit or humor, but I think I got what the show-runners wanted me to get. The Hound: a Very in-your -face scene that paid off. YThe Brotherhood Without Banners is yetr another in a long line of failures for this show (“We are sworn to each other- more loyal than any oath and stronger than any castle-forged steel… unless your name is Gendry and a hot red woman shows up with two bags of gold… but damn it OUR OATHS HOLD IF ITS ONLY ONE BAG OF GOLD!”). But the Hound killed it the whole time. His struggle seemed more real than we would have thought (though still really sparse on details). I liked the decision to keep the farmer and daughter’s corpses around the whole time. I thought that while the Brotherhood is ultimately a waste of otherwise good characters, the show did the best it could. Sansa Queenmaker: Sansa’s realpolitik is striking. I think Turner is doing a tremendous job. Sansa is a dynamic and vicious player in the GoT and she seems righta t home in the unforgiving North… that now seems more forgiving. Regardless, her place in the game is fully secured and I hope the show builds on her. I absolutely LOVED that she mentioned Robb and Ned and how their failures were on them. Honesty is a bitch. (Not-So-Honorable Mention: For making the claim that Jon is a great leader. WHAT???! You mean the guy who ignored your advice before the Battle of the Bastards, alienated the Night’s Watch enough to have them murder him? That guy? Yeah, he’s great). Soldiering On: Yes, I get it Ed Sheeran was in the show. Oh the Humanity. But that was a really deep scene where Arya- who hates the Lannisters and wants them all dead -breaks bread with them, hears who they are as people, finds that she likes them and feels “safe” with them This scene was a long-time coming where our enemies will likely, one day, need to be our friends. I think the show did a deft job of this. On the Fence: The Lords of Fan Service: I … I get it … you watch Social Media and you see that that little girl who is the Lord of Bear Island gets the fans cheering. And Arya doing Arya things is so Arya. So you give the fans what they want. The showrunners now cater to the fans and give them what they think they want – a old and wise little girl who shoots down grizzled lords and Arya wiping out an entire family in 15 seconds. If there was one thing I always loved about the books (those few years we had them) it was that Martin NEVER gave the fans what they wanted. How about instead of giving the fans what you think the fans want… you… developed characters, involve them in compelling stories and then bring those stories to a climax? But … wait … dragons. DRAGONSTONE! ISN’T THIS EXCITING! I know the payoff seemed cool, but it wasn’t. For starters, we KNEW last season that she was “OMW” to Westeros and Jaime said she would head for Dragonstone. Why did we need 3 minutes of … dead air? I get that it was so she could say “Shall we begin” and make it seem cool. BUT WE HAVE 7 EPISODES THIS SEASON! Time is a precious commodity! Stop wasting it on this silly, boring stuff. I mean, if the season STARTED with Danny ON Dragonstone … would we have felt cheated? Get this shit going! ‘The Plot Devices’ Arm: So, there were MANY bad things at Oldtown, and one of them was Mormont’s arm in the cell. I like that he’s here, but … HOW DID HE GET HERE! Do these people have time travel? Warp speed? Do they get teleporters or something? How did he get to Oldtown? He left like 4 episodes ago (I think). Time moves in mysterious ways in Westeroes. Arya’s Finale: I think in a way I sort of liked it- we just put a gigantic “period” at the end of an otherwise useless plot (The Freys in the Riverlands). But holy Hell is that just a silly combo of Fan Service and empty writing. Basically, Arya is now a Super Wizard who can not only travel across space and time in 20 minutes, she is so good at the Faceless Man Thing (TM pending) that she can basically kill anyone at any time. And so with very few resources she is able to poison everyone at House Frey. They were all there BTW- everyone could make it. And she poisoned them all. Okay, I can swallow that to some degree because they have now made her unbelievably powerful. But could they have made it any less interesting or easier for her? Remember when characters had to work for their payoff? When things were difficult and dangerous? Well, not anymore. Now our favorite characters walk into a castle, kill its leader, hides the body and then somehow poison everyone in the family. In, like, 15 minutes. Nothing goes wrong; nobody asks silly questions, nobody acts out of line. Everything just goes perfectly. In other words, it felt an awful lot like Magic (because it was, really) and that never interests me. I wish we had more of Arya doing hard work to EARN such a glorious payoff instead of the “push this button and all your enemies die” scene we got. But… still kinda glad it was fast. What I hated: We Thought It Would Have Been Too Obvious Had Dany Landed On Dragonstone with a Map Where X Marked the Spot: So… it was stupid enough that the most well-done scenes this episode were the ones involving books and shit… but then you had this obvious thing where Sam is trying to find Dragonglass and instead of working to find it… he literally looks at a book and there is a LITERAL MAP RIGHT TO A GIGANTIC CACHE OF DRAGONGLASS! In a book. Right there. For anyone to see. He’s been telling people about White Walkers and Dragonglass for weeks, but no no… its all right there in a book. THnak God. For a moment I thought characters would need to work to get something. Thankfully it plops down in their lap. Its Season 7 Only It Feels Like Season 1: This is REALLY nit-picky on my part but … where is everyone? The Frey diner had like 20 people in it; Cersei’s thrown room had NOBODY in it; the Citadel seemed like it had the same 8 Masters in it; there was LITERALLY nobody on Dragonstone. If it wasn’t for CGIs we’d have no White Walkers and no Iron Fleet. The sparse feeling of the show is evident and its distracting. If you show a Kingdom, it would be nice to know that it had subjects. Is it Over? Yes and No: The show is very boring. This episode was very boring. Its understandable because this is the season opener and the show continues to follow the tradition of going over old ground a second time in the opener. It sucks because this “season” is split (needlessly) between two years and that’s dumb but they do it now. But we don’t have the time for such slow episodes like this. Almost everything that happened we either 1) knew was going to happen (Dany Lands on Dragonstone; Sam at the Citadel) or 2) seems contrived (Cersei + Iron Isles – Profit). Did any of it lead to anything? Even the big pay-off scene – Arya killing the Freys – we already knew that! She already killed Walder. We knew that the family would not properly rebound. But we went over the same ground already. The show isn’t terrible – its not, despite my lukewarm reception to it; its just feeling less and less interesting; more and more predictable; its not NEARLY as hard for the heroes as it was in the past and the “villains” seem already defeated- like we are just waiting for the ref to stop the fight. The drama of the show is done: replaced by buried treasure, magic and fan-service. And that is not only too easy. Its also boring.
  2. I went back and I rewatched a few of the episodes from Season 6 and realized that I was probably too hard on the show that season. I figured it was because Season 5 was so fucking terrible (and it was) that it clouded my judgement about the how in season 6. And not because the show is in the middle of an epic tailspin as the show runners are utterly hapless since the source material stopped and Martin has really stopped providing any support (ie: he stopped writing one episode a season years ago). No, not that at all. So, SEASON SEVEN! Here we… ohhh…. Fuuuuckkkk…. I’m not saying it was boring, but there was a scene this week where two characters LITERALLY watched paint dry… What I liked? Pod: Gonna start off slow here but I think Pod is looking less and less like some noble’s kid and more and more like a grizzled veteran. The actor is doing a very good job. The Queen and Her Consort: After an artist completes his depiction of the seven Kingdoms at Cersei’s feet, Cersei and Jaime engage in a moderately decent discussion of their situation: they are fucked. No heirs, no dynasty, no army, no Navy, no allies. But they have a plan in the Reavers of Pyke. Kinda. See, turns out that although we had to watch that BS last season… somehow… it didn’t count. Because… reasons? Any explanation? Anyone going to tell the viewer how it happened or why or … anyway, doesn’t matter. What matters is that the show, after telling us how pathetic and weak House Lannister is, wants us to fear House Lannister. Not sure how we can do that. Regardless, watching Jaime and Cersei interact was … fine. I understood their issues; I got why they were screwed and Jaime seemed both smart and capable. The Citadel: Epically stupid… BUT … well done. Great acting on everyone’s part, good filming; I thought Sam seemed both distressed AND focused. There was nothing approaching wit or humor, but I think I got what the show-runners wanted me to get. The Hound: a Very in-your -face scene that paid off. YThe Brotherhood Without Banners is yetr another in a long line of failures for this show (“We are sworn to each other- more loyal than any oath and stronger than any castle-forged steel… unless your name is Gendry and a hot red woman shows up with two bags of gold… but damn it OUR OATHS HOLD IF ITS ONLY ONE BAG OF GOLD!”). But the Hound killed it the whole time. His struggle seemed more real than we would have thought (though still really sparse on details). I liked the decision to keep the farmer and daughter’s corpses around the whole time. I thought that while the Brotherhood is ultimately a waste of otherwise good characters, the show did the best it could. Sansa Queenmaker: Sansa’s realpolitik is striking. I think Turner is doing a tremendous job. Sansa is a dynamic and vicious player in the GoT and she seems righta t home in the unforgiving North… that now seems more forgiving. Regardless, her place in the game is fully secured and I hope the show builds on her. I absolutely LOVED that she mentioned Robb and Ned and how their failures were on them. Honesty is a bitch. (Not-So-Honorable Mention: For making the claim that Jon is a great leader. WHAT???! You mean the guy who ignored your advice before the Battle of the Bastards, alienated the Night’s Watch enough to have them murder him? That guy? Yeah, he’s great). Soldiering On: Yes, I get it Ed Sheeran was in the show. Oh the Humanity. But that was a really deep scene where Arya- who hates the Lannisters and wants them all dead -breaks bread with them, hears who they are as people, finds that she likes them and feels “safe” with them This scene was a long-time coming where our enemies will likely, one day, need to be our friends. I think the show did a deft job of this. On the Fence: The Lords of Fan Service: I … I get it … you watch Social Media and you see that that little girl who is the Lord of Bear Island gets the fans cheering. And Arya doing Arya things is so Arya. So you give the fans what they want. The showrunners now cater to the fans and give them what they think they want – a old and wise little girl who shoots down grizzled lords and Arya wiping out an entire family in 15 seconds. If there was one thing I always loved about the books (those few years we had them) it was that Martin NEVER gave the fans what they wanted. How about instead of giving the fans what you think the fans want… you… developed characters, involve them in compelling stories and then bring those stories to a climax? But … wait … dragons. DRAGONSTONE! ISN’T THIS EXCITING! I know the payoff seemed cool, but it wasn’t. For starters, we KNEW last season that she was “OMW” to Westeros and Jaime said she would head for Dragonstone. Why did we need 3 minutes of … dead air? I get that it was so she could say “Shall we begin” and make it seem cool. BUT WE HAVE 7 EPISODES THIS SEASON! Time is a precious commodity! Stop wasting it on this silly, boring stuff. I mean, if the season STARTED with Danny ON Dragonstone … would we have felt cheated? Get this shit going! ‘The Plot Devices’ Arm: So, there were MANY bad things at Oldtown, and one of them was Mormont’s arm in the cell. I like that he’s here, but … HOW DID HE GET HERE! Do these people have time travel? Warp speed? Do they get teleporters or something? How did he get to Oldtown? He left like 4 episodes ago (I think). Time moves in mysterious ways in Westeroes. Arya’s Finale: I think in a way I sort of liked it- we just put a gigantic “period” at the end of an otherwise useless plot (The Freys in the Riverlands). But holy Hell is that just a silly combo of Fan Service and empty writing. Basically, Arya is now a Super Wizard who can not only travel across space and time in 20 minutes, she is so good at the Faceless Man Thing (TM pending) that she can basically kill anyone at any time. And so with very few resources she is able to poison everyone at House Frey. They were all there BTW- everyone could make it. And she poisoned them all. Okay, I can swallow that to some degree because they have now made her unbelievably powerful. But could they have made it any less interesting or easier for her? Remember when characters had to work for their payoff? When things were difficult and dangerous? Well, not anymore. Now our favorite characters walk into a castle, kill its leader, hides the body and then somehow poison everyone in the family. In, like, 15 minutes. Nothing goes wrong; nobody asks silly questions, nobody acts out of line. Everything just goes perfectly. In other words, it felt an awful lot like Magic (because it was, really) and that never interests me. I wish we had more of Arya doing hard work to EARN such a glorious payoff instead of the “push this button and all your enemies die” scene we got. But… still kinda glad it was fast. What I hated: We Thought It Would Have Been Too Obvious Had Dany Landed On Dragonstone with a Map Where X Marked the Spot: So… it was stupid enough that the most well-done scenes this episode were the ones involving books and shit… but then you had this obvious thing where Sam is trying to find Dragonglass and instead of working to find it… he literally looks at a book and there is a LITERAL MAP RIGHT TO A GIGANTIC CACHE OF DRAGONGLASS! In a book. Right there. For anyone to see. He’s been telling people about White Walkers and Dragonglass for weeks, but no no… its all right there in a book. THnak God. For a moment I thought characters would need to work to get something. Thankfully it plops down in their lap. Its Season 7 Only It Feels Like Season 1: This is REALLY nit-picky on my part but … where is everyone? The Frey diner had like 20 people in it; Cersei’s thrown room had NOBODY in it; the Citadel seemed like it had the same 8 Masters in it; there was LITERALLY nobody on Dragonstone. If it wasn’t for CGIs we’d have no White Walkers and no Iron Fleet. The sparse feeling of the show is evident and its distracting. If you show a Kingdom, it would be nice to know that it had subjects. Is it Over? Yes and No: The show is very boring. This episode was very boring. Its understandable because this is the season opener and the show continues to follow the tradition of going over old ground a second time in the opener. It sucks because this “season” is split (needlessly) between two years and that’s dumb but they do it now. But we don’t have the time for such slow episodes like this. Almost everything that happened we either 1) knew was going to happen (Dany Lands on Dragonstone; Sam at the Citadel) or 2) seems contrived (Cersei + Iron Isles – Profit). Did any of it lead to anything? Even the big pay-off scene – Arya killing the Freys – we already knew that! She already killed Walder. We knew that the family would not properly rebound. But we went over the same ground already. The show isn’t terrible – its not, despite my lukewarm reception to it; its just feeling less and less interesting; more and more predictable; its not NEARLY as hard for the heroes as it was in the past and the “villains” seem already defeated- like we are just waiting for the ref to stop the fight. The drama of the show is done: replaced by buried treasure, magic and fan-service. And that is not only too easy. Its also boring.
  3. Goood..... gggggooooooooooooddddd.... let the hate FLOW through you...
  4. Saints not likely to sign Butler to an offer sheet Basically, the Saints said that they will not give up the #11 for Butler so they can't sign him to an offer sheet and ship their 1st pick to the Pats. They could still trade for Butler but that would require Butler to sign the tender (which he still has not done). If Butler does not sign the tender b April 21, he can only play for the Pats UNLESS the Pats sign him to a tender and then trade him. Given the time they have had, this is not a surprise. You have to figure if they were going to do this deal they would have done it by now. The only other way would be to concoct a trade and that may or may not be happening. As Peyton said, the situation is "ongoing" but it seems like if a trade was going to happen it would have by now.
  5. GOOD NEWS! The Raiders and Jets will never give up their God given right to trade for players to huge contracts whom will immediately suck.
  6. The Patriots are good at something, so lets ban it. A rule to bar teams from winning 5 Superbowls in 16 seasons narrowly lost.
  7. I have no idea if he could because Belichick is so immersed in football all the time that that could be all he knows. But, yeah, he has such an eye for talent; for coach-ability; for what matters in particular match ups etc. But he also knows he is on solid footing BECAUSE he knows so much about football. If you put him in a baseball dugout, Belichcik could never say to himself, "Hey, I know this game" the way he does in football, so if he ever had to make a decision he could never fall-back on "No, I know this game as well as you can know it..." In fact, Belichcik spoke about this a few years back when asked if he could do another job in sports that was not football related and the discussion got turned to baseball. (this is a paraphrase of what was said) "I have no idea how anybody can be a third-base coach," Belichick said. "I mean, you have one decision to make- whether or not to send a guy home on a ball hit to the outfield - and there are just so many factors to consider that are just so variable - arm strength, accuracy of the throw, speed of the runner, - and you have to do it all in a split-second. How can you make that decisioon and do it right so quickly? I doulc never do that. "Now, first-base coach; I could do that job. Guy gets a hit you stand there and say 'Good hit, way to hit the ball' or 'way to take that walk; nice job.' Now that's a job I could do." Then again, most coaches in most sports are terrible, so Belichik would likely go above 500 lifetime in any sport.
  8. Back to the Future II must have SUCKED for us...
  9. This is exactly my point again, returning to Parcell's line: You are what your record says you are. While the Pats could be 3-4 in Super Bowls, they are not; they are 5-2 and there are a lot of factors that go into that. Case-in-point, one of those "wins-turned-into-a-loss" I am assuming would be the 14 Sueprbowl. Pats were battling with Seattle and then Kearse makes a horseshoe-up-the-ass catch. The ball bounced lucky for him and Seattle. How does That "lucky" play make Seattle any more deserving of winning or for calling that game a "loss" for the Pats? It doesn't. Only the final score matters. But by your logic, I could make a fantastic argument that the Pats are two plays from being 7-0 in Superbowls (Helmet Catch in '07; Welker's drop in '11). But it really doesn't matter to me; there fact that we are talking about one QB making it to Seven God-Darn Superbowls is astounding. 3-4 and 5-2 are dramatically different results, but in many ways its just a reaffirmation of how cosmically incredible the Pats have been since 2001 and how fortunate I am to be watching them and rooting for them. Basically, once the argument starts with "In their Seven Superbowls, Brady and Belichick should have ..." the speaker is implicitly admitting that Brady is the greatest QB of all time and Belichick is the greatest coach of all time.
  10. "The record is misleading" is, well, misleading. I always agree with what Bill Parcells said when he was head coach of the Pats and was asked (paraphrasing) "The Pats are 2-4 but could easily be 4-2" and his response was: "You are what your record says you are." Look at Cleveland under Beliehick: 36 - 44. He had ONE winning season 11-5 and four losing ones. The Browns had ONE season under Belichick where they got a lot of attention (1994) and they were 1-1 in the playoffs (ironically, defeating Parcell's Patriots). The problem was that Belichick was still a young coach and he made mistakes. The most well-documented was the way he treated defensive stand outs. With the Giants, Belichick knew what he had in Lawrence Taylor. Taylor could basically do everything. But LT also loved to party; loved going all night and into the morning doing, basically, whatever he wanted. And that would include staying out Saturday night deep into Sunday morning and stumbling into the locker room for a 1pm game. And LT could do it. Belichick learned that players like LT could party hard and still play hard. So when he came to Cleveland, Belichick took the same approach- guys were free to do what they wanted to do when they wanted to do. And it was, predictably, a fucking disaster because, well, most players are not LT! This lead to problems. He did get the team to work really well in 94 after he settled the whole Bernie Kosar problem (cutting him), but then the team moved. I think, AT BEST, Belichick's record is "underwhelming;" as stated several times, its basically Rex Ryan's record. Belichcik has made it to the playoffs ONCE in SEVEN SEASONS (CLE: 1991-1995; NE 2000, 2008) without Brady as his QB. To me, that means something. I also think that Belichick's standing in the NFL NOW blurs the proper view of his Cleveland tenure THEN; in many ways Belichick 1991-1995 was similar to Pete Carroll 1997-1999: young guy, over his head, unimpressive results with a talented team). But because Belichick is impressive now, I think we have a tendency to overrate what he did in CLE, which was in effect "not much."
  11. Revis obviously listened really well to Cris Carter.
  12. I don't know. I actually think Butler is better than Gilmore so losing him- which I think is all but done -has the potential to make the team worse. I think Guy is akin to Long so that's a wash. Will Ealy be the breakthrough player? I don't know; my inclination is that he's the guy who makes an impact here and there, but I do not think the Pats have anybody that makes me think, "The team got immediately better." I think that they have potential and we will see what happens there. And if Butler resigns - and I do not believe he will - then, yes, they are better. But I think that they have the POTENTIAL to be better, but that may also mean they have the potential to be "meh."
  13. (So, my one-day trial just got extended into two so ....) The HIghtower resigning was fucking huge. This is the leader of the D; everything goes through him; he makes everyone better, he makes huge plays, he is the communication with the coaches during plays; everything goes through him. But if he was gone? The team devolves immediately into "Devon McCourty and 10 role-players." While that's an exaggeration, its only a slight one. Hightower makes this D respectable; without him; without Collins; without Butler; without Jones, this D is on the down-side of that ranking, falling almost certainly to the twenties in DVOA defense. With High they are probably in the low teens. Regardless, huge day for the Pats that will almost certainly cap one of their best free-agent experiences to date.
  14. Er... they were REALLY middle of the road. The Pats had a fantastic game in week 3- they shut out the Texans but make no mistake- the Texans were so bad at that time and Watt was playing hurt. Also, the Texans committed costly turnovers on special teams; the D never really had to take the field. But also, Pats played a lot of TERRIBLE offenses in 2016 which assisted keeping their PPG total low. Again, looking at DVOA- this time on the offense's side - the Pats played the BOTTOM FIVE teams in DVOA - the 49'ers, Texans, Rams, Browns and Jets. The Pats played four more games against sub-average DVOA teams Bills x2 and Miami x2. And the Bills BEAT the Pats in week 4 (no Brady). Look at the top-ten DVOA teams from 2016- Pats were 1-1 against those teams with a loss to Seattle, and a win against Pittsburgh, but that Pittsburgh win was without Big Ben. In the Playoffs, the Pats tightened things up by the AFC Championship game, but their D was mediocre against the Texans, good against Pitt and schizophrenic against the Falcons. But the Superbowl is also cloudy; a HUGE part of the Pats success came from the Offense keeping Ryan-Jones off the field for so long. And Hightower's strip-sack helped... Regardless, I think for 2016 the Pats D was helped out tremendously by the schedule and was otherwise middle-of-the-pack which is sometimes good enough.
  15. I think this can be a great (if not redundant) topic, and after my trial in the morning I may take time to unpack some of this, but for now I just want to tackle this one piece. Brady's defenses have ranged from "fucking great" (2003-2004) to overrated (2001), to "meh" (2007, 2009, 2012) to flat out fucking terrible (2011, 2013). Here are the Pats defensive rankings (DVOA) by year, broken up in total defensive ranking and Weighted (w. Weighted games that happened at the end of the season count more than games that happened at the start) 2001: 13th total D, 13th Weighted D (not nearly as great as we all remembered) 2002: 14th Total, 21 Weighted (last time Brady finished a season and the Pats did not make the playoffs) 2003: 2 and 2 2004: 7 and 7 (seems like they should have been better) 2005: 27 and 24 (somehow made the playoffs) 2006: 7 and 4 (MUCH better than I recall) 2007: 11 and 19 (Weighted seems exactly right: the D began to deteriorate rapidly in the 2nd half of the season) 2008: N/A 2009: 14, 13 (what's interesting here is that Brady was not at 100% yet the team's D was about the same as in 2007. And yet...) 2010: 21 and 11 (THe D played great in the second half and it helped the Pats not at all) 2011: 30 and 28 (How fucking stupid is it that the Pats made the Superbowl that season? How??!?!?!?) 2012: 15 and 15 2013: 20 and 24 (Pats had no business making it to the AFC Championship game with this D) 2014: 12 and 13 (Again, in retrospect they seemed better...) 2015: 12 and 15 2016: 16 and 11 (they got better as the year went on... after they got rid of Collins... makes no sense). So, to recap, the Pats D was only in the top ten THREE times w/ Brady as the starter (03, 04 and 06) and while the Pats DID win the SB in 2 of those seasons, those were all early-year successes. The Pats have enjoyed extraordinary post season success with team Ds that have been anything but great and in a few cases (01, 07, '14 and '16) made it to or even WON the Superbowl with pretty mediocre Ds and in a few seasons made it DEEP into the playoffs with below-average to terrible D (2013 to the AFC Championship game; 2011 to the Superbowl). So, no; Brady did not have a top-notch D for even the majority of his career; he basically had a top-notch D for 3 of his first 6 seasons and that was it.