January 14, 2018

IT'S A COACHES' LEAGUE AND THEY'RE MOSTLY INCOMPETENT:

Unheralded defensive trio delivers in Patriots' playoff victory (Adam Kurkjian, January 14, 2018, Boston Herald)

Back when the local temperatures were sweltering hot, Adam Butler, Ricky Jean Francois and Marquis Flowers were busy being left off media-projected 53-man rosters or suiting up for other teams.

But as has been the case for years now under Patriots coach Bill Belichick, the snow comes, the wind whips thermometers at or below 0, and his team's defensive standouts crystalize from outside the casual fan's view to ice opposing offenses. [...]

The three players are known quantities by now, but Butler is an undrafted rookie free agent. Flowers was acquired in a trade with the Cincinnati Bengals in August and largely a special teams player until late in the season. Jean Francois has been cut five times by three different teams -- including once by the Patriots -- since March. [...]

Yet as was the case with the likes of cornerback Malcolm Butler and linebackers Akeem Ayers and Jonathan Casillas three years ago, or any number of surprise standouts in a season, it doesn't matter when, how or from where the players arrive in Foxboro. If they learn a spot, they'll earn one, and that can change from week to week.

"Everybody on the roster's going to have a role," Adam Butler said. "Your role might be different the next week. Your role might change. There's not definite spots for each position. Anybody can go."

Two of the things that hamstring organizations are giving endless opportunities to high draft picks, highly-paid players and "stars," because cutting them is somehow embarrassing and not giving larger roles to marginal guys who earn them because they are "nobodys." 



Posted by at January 14, 2018 1:16 PM

  

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