While the aerial acrobatics of Brady, Moss and Welker made it easy to forget that the Patriots had a rushing game, a lot of the blame for that has to go to Laurence Maroney. He had a bad season. Ow! Stop throwing things at me you damn Patriots homers!
Yes, there are legitimate reasons for it. The NFL’s Greatest Passing Offense meant the Patriots didn’t need to run the ball much, and certainly didn’t run it enough to allow Maroney to get into a rhythm. Sammy Morris and Kevin Faulk combined for 147 carries (compared to Maroney’s 185). Maroney had been hurt during camp and missed three weeks in early October. All those things are valid reasons why Maroney didn’t live up to expectations. The problem is: What’s different this year? Brady and his Flying Circus? All of them are back, except for Donte’ Stallworth and he doesn’t count. Sammy Morris is back from injury and Kevin Faulk returns as well. OK, the Pats just signed LaMont Jordan so that's different, but not in a good way. In fact, it's different in a very bad way.
Maroney should be healthy this year, but even a full season of last year’s production doesn’t get you to 1000 rushing yards. A healthy LaMont Jordan is almost certain to get more than the 85 carries Sammy Morris received last year -- and then Morris will steal some more carries. It would be very surprising to see Maroney get more carries in 2008 than he had in 2007 so draft accordingly