By MyFM’s John Wilbur - Three games in and the New England Patriots are not looking like a team that will be playing in February again, now I know it's only three games and the Patriots tend to figure these things out eventually. But this season seems different this year it seems as though Bill has let the cupboards run dry. There is no longer anyone left on the shelves for the next man up attitude that the Patriots have so successfully run throughout the years. A man goes down and another steps up I.E. Tom Brady, Julian Edelman, Brandon Cooks, Troy Brown, Daron Harmon, Devin McCourty, Malcolm Butler, Lagarret Blount and so on and so on. But now there is no one left to step up. The receiving core is thin at best with Edelman still serving a four-game suspension and Josh Gordon not ready to step in yet. Cordarrelle Patterson certainly doesn't seem like the answer and we all know that Tom will stop sending the ball his way if he continues to miss passes and not perform at the top level, same goes for Phillip Dorsett who has 12 receptions this season with none coming against the Lions on Sunday night. Rob Gronkowski has been the only weapon Brady has been able to find with some success and Gronk is constantly double teamed. That would seemingly open something up for someone else but Chris Hogan has been very quiet making just seven receptions this season for 84 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Rookie running back Sony Michel has yet to prove he belongs with the big boy's running more East and West than he has North and South. Michel has just 84 yards on 24 carries and no touchdowns. James White seems to be the goto back but he wasn't even in for most of the game on Sunday against the Lions. White has just 66 yards on 13 carries this season without a score as well. Rex Burkhead has been the go-to guy but Rex has been dealing with concussion protocol on and off for most of the season and didn't carry the ball at all against the Lions catching just two passes out of the backfield. Josh Gordon is expected to be a deep threat once he finally sees some game action but who knows what kinda of numbers the often troubled receiver will be able to put up and will Tom Brady even have enough confidence in Gordon to send the ball his way? We all know that Tom is very picky when it comes to not "doing your Job" right and will only send the ball your way if he has complete confidence in your abilities. The offense isn't the only troubled area of this team with the defense struggling to keep their opponents off the board Teams are scoring early and often against the Pats. Dont`a Hightower hasn't seemed himself returning from an injury last season and with Patrick Chung out the last two weeks, the secondary has looked lost. Stephon Gilmore is doing a good job on one side but can't cover both sides of the field and teams are challenging him as well. The absence of Trey Flowers has hurt and the fact that Kyle Van Noy hasn't recorded a sack yet this season is troubling. The Patriots have a lot of work to do if they expect to play for their 6th Superbowl ring in February and it starts when they get back on the field this weekend against the Miami Dolphins who are probably the second best team in the AFC East but that's not saying much.
The Patriots host the Dolphins this Sunday @ Gillette Stadium starting at 1pm.