Patriots belong in explosive O discussion

June, 7, 2011
6/07/11
8:56
AM ET
In an "NFL Live" segment, ESPN analysts Mark Schlereth and Marcellus Wiley discussed the most explosive offense.

Each spoke definitively about his choice. Wiley went with the Philadelphia Eagles because of team speed. Schlereth backed the Green Bay Packers.

Yoo-hoo! Fellas?

What about the New England Patriots? All they did last year was score the most points in the league, averaging 4.8 points per game more than the team than finished second, the San Diego Chargers.

The Patriots scored a league-leading 56 offensive touchdowns. They did so on 986 scrimmage plays, just 22nd in the league. To give a better idea of what kind of neighborhood the Patriots were in when it came to snaps: Of the 10 teams that had fewer plays than the Patriots, the Tennessee Titans scored the most offensive TDs with 37.

In other words, the Patriots scored most frequently and on much fewer plays than most other clubs. Isn't that the definition of explosiveness?

The Patriots also added six more touchdowns on defense and three in the return game, but those aren't germane to this conversation. The Patriots still had the most potent offense last year and should be at least as dangerous in 2011. The whole crew is back.

Granted, the Patriots won't have a bunch of players drafted in the first three rounds of your fantasy league like the Eagles and Packers probably will, but quarterback Tom Brady is the reigning MVP and spreads the ball to a contingent of reliable players such as Wes Welker, Deion Branch, Rob Gronkowski, Aaron Hernandez and Danny Woodhead.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis isn't a superstar, but he was the AFC East's only 1,000-yard rusher last season. The line consistently performs at a high level and allows the Patriots to remain a balanced -- and explosive -- offense.

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