- Mike Reiss, ESPN Staff Writer
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On "NFL Live" this afternoon, Tedy Bruschi shared his opinion on the Patriots and what has gone wrong the last two years in the playoffs.
Bruschi, who said he sees the Patriots back in the playoffs in the years to come, was asked what he thinks needs to change.
"A lot of these young players have to establish their identity of who they are. In this league, you establish your identity in the playoffs and they haven't done that the last two years," Bruschi said.
"Plays have to be made just like they were in the regular season. They were plus-28 in the turnover [differential] but they didn't get a turnover versus the New York Jets. Big plays were [there], but [Alge] Crumpler drops a ball in the end zone, a botched fake punt -- those type of mistakes were not made in the regular season. Everything is more magnified in the playoffs and all of these mistakes will be talked about in New England over and over for the month to come.
"The thing is, these young players have to realize that come playoff time, there is a different level, a mentality you have to have."
This topic was touched on in the weekly Patriots mailbag, with some asking if the Patriots are playing with enough passion in the playoffs in recent years.
My opinion was that it was more about execution than passion.
Bruschi's comments about that playoff-type mentality add a new layer to the debate.