"Holy Toledo!"

December 29, 2007

16-0 Perfect Patriots

Filed under: NFL — Bill @ 10:00 pm

Are the New England Patriots the best team ever? Probably not. Time will tell.

Are the Patriots the greatest team since the advent of the NFL salary cap? This could be true.

Tip your ha to “the cheaters” they won tonight to go 16-0.

Having won so often in the past has allowed them to sign free agents for less money than those very same players would have demanded to play for any other team. Look at ex-Ravens LB Adalius Thomas. He could have been earned at least $8 or $9 million to play for the SF 49ers (among other teams). Instead he took only $6 million to play for Bilichick.

Randy Moss accepted a lowball 1 year deal (loaded with incentives) to play in New England. Unlike what he did for the Raiders this season he actually gave an effort (he’s a slacker).

Ex-retired LB Junior Seau was happy to sit in his rocker unless a team wanted to pay him huge dollars. When the Patriots called and offered only $1 million he jumped out of his rocker and perhaps into a Super Bowl.

This is what happens to good teams. They develop a reputation and players flock to be a part of their success. It used to happen that way in Dallas in the early ’90’s, before that it was San Francisco during the 80’s. Before that it was Oakland & Pittsburgh had this going for them during the ’70’s. None of those teams had a salary cap to deal with, yet they still enjoyed this advantage.

GM’s around the league are quietly concerned about how tough the Patriots will be for the next 5 years given their “reputation discount” they have gained in dealing with the salary cap.

Eventually their success will drive up the salaries of their stars, or they will lose them to other teams who will over-pay to acquire them. We thought this would have already happened to the Pats, who won their first Super Bowl in 2001. This is what makes their current accomplishment even more amazing.

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