New England Patriots Stock Watch: Vince Wilfork Up, Offensive Line Down


The New England Patriots managed to come away with a win yesterday, despite playing one of their worst offensive games in recent memory. On the defensive side of the ball, the Pats had a number of guys that played well, but even the defense was not exempt of some bad play.

Here is this week’s edition of the Patriots’ stock watch:


Vince Wilfork

The big man in the middle played awesome all game long, both in the running game, and surprisingly in the pass game as well. Wilfork was eating up blockers, breaking up running plays in the backfield, and even coming up with game-winning interceptions. Wilfork is one of the most important pieces on this defense, and he proved his worth yesterday.

Julian Edelman

Same old story, right?

Edelman had another monster game, reeling in 10 catches for 84 yards. Many have complained about Brady targeting Edelman too much, but if he is always open, and good things always happen when he has the ball, why not throw him the ball as much as possible?

Brandon LaFell

After being shut out in the first two games, LaFell had a good bounce-back performance against the Raiders. The former Panther caught four balls for 46 yards in this one, and seemed to emerge as Brady’s go-to guy after Edelman and Gronkowski. Hopefully this means LaFell will slowly become more effective on the outside as the season moves forward.

Dont’a Hightower

Aside from Chandler Jones, I think Hightower is the MVP of this Patriots team thus far. He was excellent once again yesterday, as he was second on the team in total tackles, and made a few nice plays in coverage as well. I think it is obvious that Hightower is vastly improved from last year, and will turn in a tremendous 2014-15 campaign.


Offensive line

This was a bad, bad game from the front five. Tom Brady only went down twice, but he was under duress throughout the entire game, which disrupted the offense, and never allowed it to get into any kind of a rhythm. They were also pretty bad in the running game, as the Patriots averaged a measly 2.4 yards a carry yesterday. The line’s play improved a bit once rookie Bryan Stork was brought into the game, and I think that will be something the Pats continue to use in the future.

Darrelle Revis/Logan Ryan

A good game overall for the defense, but a bad game for these two cornerbacks. Derek Carr showed no fear in attacking Revis, as he completed five passes for 63 yards when going against the former Buccaneer. Ryan struggled mightily as well, giving up a costly 24-yard pass interference penalty late in the game when the Raiders were driving. Hopefully Alfonzo Dennard will be healthy enough to play next week in Kansas City.