The most up-to-date content on the planet
this just in
WEEI » This Just In » Lombardi on D&C: Fast start key for Pats
Fri, 12/07/2012 - 10:50am  

Lombardi on D&C: Fast start key for Pats

NFL Network analyst Mike Lombardi joined Dennis & Callahan on Friday morning to preview Monday's Patriots-Texans game and discuss news from around the league.

Lombardi looked ahead to Monday's big showdown between the Patriots and Texans and said that the team that will have the advantage is the one that can set the pace.

“I think this is going to be a fascinating game for both sides,” Lombardi said. “Both teams are the No. 1 and the No. 2 in the NFL in terms of scoring points in the first quarter and second quarter. Both teams are in a rush to establish the lead. Both teams like to play from in front. I think it’s going to be who starts fastest and who plays with a tempo and creates it and can get off the field. When you watch Houston, Houston is about winning every down. They get yards and positive yards. … I think New England’s objective is to try to get the lead, play from in front. Force the Texans to try to have to block and pass protect and go from there and utilize their physicality in terms of their defense to try to put pressure on [Matt] Schaub. … I think the one who can set the pace is going to be one who has the best advantage.”

Lombardi said the Patriots have to watch out for defensive end J.J. Watt. He notes that Watt is especially dangerous tipping passes.

“He’s a physical force,” Lombardi said. “You have to know where he is all the time. He knows the protection is always being slid to him. He understands that. I think you have to allow him, to make sure he doesn’t beat you, you’re going to double him. I think you've got to make sure you’re careful if you are throwing the football to make sure that you get it over him. He has 15½ passes broken up, 16½ sacks, that’s over 30 opportunities to create turnovers. That’s really rare in an NFL defensive lineman.”

Lombardi complimented the Texans offense but didn’t classify Schaub as an elite quarterback.

“No, but I think the offense is elite,” Lombardi said. “I think Gary Kubiak does a great job of understanding who they are on offense. Part of what I was talking about establishing the lead is critical, because they’re a run team early, they’re play-action pass team. They take shots. I wouldn’t be shocked if the first play of the game was a shot up the field. They’re going to try to make big chunks of yards. They know they need to run the ball with Arian Foster but they’re going to throw it up the field. This offense fits Schaub perfectly. ... He’s smart. He’s accurate. Does he have a gun? No. Is he the most elite athlete? No. But he’s a very productive player and they utilize him within the system extremely well.”

These teams very well could meet again in the playoffs, and Lombardi said Monday’s game will help the teams in planning for that potential playoff matchup.

“I think it will mean a lot,” Lombardi said. “Both teams will know how each one wants to play them. I think that’s going to be the chess match in the first quarter and then both teams, if they meet again in the playoffs, will have an adjustment to what they did. I think it will come down to the matchup of the players. This is a game where coaching is going to be very good on both sides of the ball. … As we get into the playoffs … is [Rob Gronkowski] back? How do they matchup to Gronkowski in the playoffs? Who they going to handle on [Aaron] Hernandez? What safety can cover him? … And conversely, how New England handles Andre Johnson, how they handle Owen Daniels. I think all of those things are going to play into effect.”

Following are more highlights from the interview.

On worrying about the gun culture as a team executive: “You have to know about the players and you have to understand the culture. … You'd better make sure you do as much reading and as much understanding to learn how you’re dealing with them. I think you really have to live in the footsteps of the person before you get them in your building and understand who they are.”

On the Jets' quarterback situation and Rex Ryan naming Mark Sanchez starter: “He had no choice. Look, Mark Sanchez is due $8.25 millon guaranteed. He gets paid it whether the Jets cut him or not. I think his cap hit is $17 million. … I mean, Rex had no real options. This is the quarterback that they made a decision to go with and I think they have to."

On this Sunday's Ravens-Redskins game: “I want to see how [Robert Griffin III] handles it. I think Baltimore is a little bit tougher than people think. I think Baltimore will bounce back this week. I think it will be a good game. RGIII threw for 167 yards last week, I think he’s going to have to throw the ball better in this game to beat the Ravens. I think the Ravens will make plays in the passing game. The Redskins defense kind of got off the hook last week, especially considering they were able to get the Giants off the field in the fourth quarter.”

On Chargers QB Philip Rivers: “I think Philip Rivers is like the boxer that’s been hit too much. Anytime a quarterback gets hit too much, it’s not good for him. I think it affects him. I think he’s seeing things and is reacting to things. I think pressure has gotten to him. … I think he’s been hit way too much. It’s going to take a rehabilitation project to get him back. He’s not nearly the elite player that he once was.”

To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page. For more Patriots news, visit the team page at

Audio On Demand

Head Coach Bill Belichick…

Head Coach Bill Belichick with Dale and Holley

Head Coach Bill Belichick with Dale and Holley

DE Chandler Jones with Dale, Holley and Thornton

Dale, Michael and Jerry sit down with DE Chandler Jones on a Patriots Monday for a candid interview about this season, his new teammates, and the Dallas game this weekend.

Tedy Bruschi with Dale, Holley and Thornton

We talk all things Patriots and the NFL with Tedy Bruschi.

Celtics Podcast - Media D…

Celtics Podcast - Media Day and The Wire

Sam Packard is joined by his brother Nick, as he breaks down his favorite moments from Celtics Media Day. Sam then tries to compare each member of the Celtics roster to a character on The Wire, with varied results.

We Love Anthony Davis - Should the Celtics Trade Avery Bradley?

Sam Packard is joined by Jared Weiss of CLNSRadio.Com to talk about trading Bradley and the upcoming Celtics Media Day.

We Love Anthony Davis - Space Jam and Celtics Summer League with Jay King. 7-23-15

Jay King of joins the show to break down the performance of the Celtics during the NBA Summer League. Then Ben and Sam discuss the exciting possibility of a Space Jam sequel.

Dave O'Brien signs off Re…

Dave O'Brien signs off Red Sox Radio after 9 seasons

Dave O'Brien has called Red Sox baseball games with Joe Castiglione since 2007. Dave is going to the NESN booth next season to take over for Don Orsillo as the Red Sox TV play-by-play man. Dave talks about his time with Joe and the Red Sox Radio broadcast and closes out a very meaningful chapter of a tremendous career. Joe Castiglione offers his thoughts and well-wishes to Dave and closes out, as is tradition, with the Bart Giamatti poem.

Torey Luvollo with Dale, Holley and Thornton

We check in for a final time this season with Red Sox interim manager Torey Luvollo as look ahead to 2016 with him.

Blake Swihart Player of the Game Interview 09-29-15

Joe and Rob Bradford talk with Red Sox catcher Blake Swihart who had his first career multi home run game as the Red Sox beat the Yankees 10-4 and extend their winning streak to a season high 5 games.

#Bruins Postgame Podcast …

#Bruins Postgame Podcast - DJ Bean reacts to the B's 6-2 season opening defeat

DJ Bean checks in live from TD Garden after the Bruins 6-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets in the season opener. Ken Laird anchors from the Podcentre

#Bruins Preview Podcast: DJ Bean answers a 6-pack of questions

WEEI Bruins reporter DJ Bean joins Ken Laird in the WEEI Podcentre to answer six pressing questions about the B's in advance of Thursday's season opener at the Garden

Butch & Bradfo featuring DJ Bean talk #Bruins lines and season outlook

DJ Bean joins Butch Stearns and Rob Bradford in studio with the pre-season ending to discuss the upcoming season's line combinations and the changes made in the offseason.

MIke Florio on Matt Hasse…

MIke Florio on Matt Hasselbeck 10-9-15

Florio on the NFL.

Headlines, Headlines, Headlines -10-9-15 Rock N Roll Hall of Fame

The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.

What would you ask Goodell? 10-9-15

What would you ask Roger Goodell?

Is Lou leaving the Midday…

Is Lou leaving the Midday Show?! 10-9-15

After joking around with Graig Murphy, who challenges Christian to a stand-up comedy showdown, Glenn and Christian face Lou about the rumors in the Boston Globe that Lou should be the new play-by-play broadcaster for the Red Sox radio broadcast.

Belichick and Jeb Bush as classmates and Christian's failed prank phone calls 10-9-15

Jeb Bush had an interview recently where he was asked if he ever smoked weed with Bill Belichick and Ernie Adams, who were all classmates in high school. Also, Christian tries to prank call Dallas restaurants and fails miserably.

Reaction to an ugly, terrible, awfully played Thursday Night Football game 10-9-15

The Colts and Texans had another pathetic game on Thursday Night Football where Ryan Mallet took himself out of the game and Matt Hasselbeck filled in for an injured Andrew Luck. The guys give their reaction and can't believe anyone could pull themselves out of a game the way Mallet did.

Will the Bruins be improv…

Will the Bruins be improved in 2015-2016?

Dale, Michael and Jerry are live from the Harp for Bruins opening night and we're breaking down what to expect from the black and gold.

Dale and Holley's Final Drive - 10-08-15

We close out the day with some of the best in sound that you may have missed out on.'s DJ Bean with Dale and Holley

We await opening night and talk B's with DJ Bean live from the Harp.

Ring Number Five- Mikey A…

Ring Number Five- Mikey Adams Song

Mikey is back for another season of Patriots-related parody songs, this time he's calling out the Cowboys.

Things get strange after 9

The final hour of the show is nothing if not entertaining

How bout them Cowboys?

Mikey takes all kinds of phone calls from Patriot fans with the utmost confidence.

#Bruins Postgame Podcast …

#Bruins Postgame Podcast - DJ Bean reacts to the B's 6-2 season opening defeat

DJ Bean checks in live from TD Garden after the Bruins 6-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets in the season opener. Ken Laird anchors from the Podcentre

College Puckcast – 2015-16 Season Preview with Mike McMahon and Providence coach Nate Leaman

WEEI’s Scott McLaughlin and Mike McMahon of College Hockey News and preview all things Hockey East and take a look at Harvard as well. Nate Leaman, head coach of the defending national champion Providence College Friars, joins the show as well.

#Bruins Preview Podcast DJ Bean answers a 6-pack of questions

WEEI Bruins reporter DJ Bean joins Ken Laird in the WEEI Podcentre to answer six pressing questions about the B's in advance of Thursday's season opener at the Garden

Compiling ESPN's dumbest …

Compiling ESPN's dumbest statements 10-7-15

We recap some of the dumbest things said by ESPN's personalities.

More from this show

Mike Salk doesn't underst…

Mike Salk doesn't understand the Monday Night Football controversy 10-7-15

Salk doesn't think batting the ball should be a big story, he cried twice at that game.

More from this show

Batted ball changes game …

Batted ball changes game in Seattle... Bill Belichick, right again.

We look at the call in the Detroit game that may have cost them the game, and how Bill Belichick was again ahead of the curve about making ALL plays reviewable. We also focus on how Bill Belichick coached teams prepare for plays like that.

More from this show

Bigger Idiot- Eisen or Ma…

Bigger Idiot- Eisen or Mazz? 10-7-15

Dino, Gerry and Kirk look at the reaction to Jessica Mendoza on twitter last night including Rich Eisen's comment on Curt Schilling.

More from this show

Doesn't anyone care about…

Doesn't anyone care about the rules?

Mikey, Lenny and Danny Picard are talking about how rules seemingly fall through the cracks during live games

More from this show

Weei Writers