2007 New England Patriots Preview

2007 New England Patriots preview from MadduxSports.com. Get NFL spread picks from the best NFL handicapping team against the NFL lines all season long.

Brady Now Has More Weapons Than The Punisher
By Adam Barone

The big story with the Patriots this offseason was obviously the upgrade of their receiving corps. Last season it seemed like the Pats were not only weak at the position, but like they didn't even have enough players to play there. Three tight ends were in on some plays, making for a troubling lack of speed. Reche Caldwell led the team with 61 receptions, and is a solid player, but is certainly not a #1 receiver. Caldwell would be best served as a slot receiver, playing inside of a big play threat. Spreading the ball to fifteen different targets in ‘06, Tom Brady still managed 3529 yards and 24 TD's. As if that wasn't scary enough, the team grabbed WR's Randy Moss from Oakland, Donte' Stallworth, Kelley Washington and Wes Welker. With so many receivers on the roster, the Pats have turned a major weakness into one of the best units in the entire NFL. The Patriots passing game should be close to unstoppable this season.

With defenses on their heels, respecting the Patriots' newfound ability to throw the ball, the running game will likely benefit as well. Laurence Maroney will get an opportunity to be the man this year after a great rookie season. Maroney is a hard runner and gives maximum effort on every play. He also has an ability to catch the ball out of the backfield, with 22 receptions for 194 yards and a score in '06. Look for Maroney to be one of the better backs in the AFC this coming season, behind only the likes of San Diego's LaDainian Tomlinson and KC's Larry Johnson, on a level with the likes of Ronnie Brown, Willis McGahee and Rudi Johnson.

The Pats had the #6 overall defense in the NFL last season and should be even better this year. They added one of the most versatile defenders in all of football, OLB Adalius Thomas, to play on the right side in their 3-4 scheme. The Patriots were 12th against the pass and 5th against the run, and drafted S Brandon Meriweather out of Miami with the 24th overall pick in the draft to strengthen the pass defense. Meriweather's involvement in the brawl between Miami and Florida International last season factors in to the character concerns that come with him, but he's big, physical and can cover, so the Patriots are willing to take their chances.

The only major issue on defense could be a lack of depth at cornerback, especially if CB Asante Samuel, tagged as the team's franchise player after his 10 INT season in '06, holds out for a better contract. The team drafted a bit of depth at the position, but Ellis Hobbs and Chad Scott are the only players with experience other than Samuel, which could become a problem.

2007 New England Patriots Predictions

Once Tom Brady and his new toys get acquainted with one another, there will be little standing in the way of the Patriots running away with the AFC East. Most sports betting sites will have them as the clear cut favorite to win the Super Bowl, and rightfully so. The only thing that could put a damper on New England's plan of rolling over the Colts, Ravens, Chargers, or whoever else stands in their way will be a substantial injury to a key component such as Maroney, Brady or multiple members of their defensive front.

If you enjoyed reading our New England Patriots preview read up on the rest of NFL AFC East division like the Bills, Dolphins, and Jets team breakdowns from Maddux Sports.

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2007 NFL Team Previews

As usual Maddux presents its anual 2007 NFL preview sorted by divisions. From each division you can find our predictions as well an individual team report of each National League Football Team. Click here to return to the main NFL season preview page.

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