Richard Seymour may have had his best year as a pro in 2008.
He’s only 29.
He’s a three-time Super Bowl winner.
In my books, a sure-fire Hall of Famer.
Yet, every time I hear fans talk about Patriots defensive end Richard Seymour, it seems they are either criticizing him for dogging it, for not being effective enough, or for being too injury prone.
I just don’t get it.
The Patriots’ defensive scheme calls for the defensive ends to each cover 2 gaps, which means they pretty much need to be twice as strong. They are generally not pass rushers. They don’t put up the gaudy numbers. However, their effectiveness at covering their gaps is what determines the entire success of the defense.
Richard Seymour, even as of last year, has done this to the utmost fashion. His first couple of years in the league, Seymour was able to exploit a lot of one on one matchups, putting up “bigger numbers.” However, by 2004, Seymour was getting double, even triple teamed. His stats dropped, and after missing nearly have the season in 2007 due to injury, Seymour fell off the radar a little bit.
Then, last summer, Richard Seymour came back to camp 10 pounds lighter and healthy. He played every game except the finale in 2008, registering 52 tackles and 8 sacks. By the end of the season, he was once again garnering constant double teams.
The guy played a monster season, yet, he still earns no respect. At only 29 and a free agent next offseason, the Patriots should make re-signing Seymour a priority, as he’s still one of the best in the game.