Sunday, July 12, 2015

Patriots Resume' - Alan Branch

What if New England Patriots' head ball coach Bill Belichick required resumes from his players - what would those look like?  We take a stab at them, in alphabetical order...

Dear Coach,

I know that you really aren't one for stats, other than the numbers on the scoreboard, so it's obvious that you don't care what people have said about my supposed lack of production on the stat sheet - particularly given my high draft status way back in the day.

What I do doesn't get a lot of recognition.  It doesn't show up on the stat sheet and, in fact, only those who really pay attention will understand the importance of my work - but you do and the guys playing behind me on the second level do, and that's all that matters.

What I do, is I get in the way.  They don't come much bigger or wider than me, so it's tough for an offensive lineman to move me out of the way - as a matter of fact, once you signed me in the middle of last season and Siliga returned from the IR, together we made quite an impact:

"In the first half of the season before the two behemoths saw the field, the Patriots' run defense was surrendering an abysmal 4.53 yards per carry to opposing running backs, including an alarming 5.32 right up the gut - which is merely a side effect of a combination of Wilfork trying to hold the nose by himself with no pure rotational nose tackle to spell him, and with Easley a shell of his enormous potential as he recovered from offseason ACL surgery. 
But once Siliga and Branch were available to be rotated into the lineup, the average yards per carry given up by the Patriots on the ground dropped by nearly a full yard per carry to 3.63, most of that division coming up the middle, where New England held opposing runners to a stupid good 2.8 yards per carry, the best in the league during that time frame." - Foxborough Free Press - June 13, 2015

Even though I'm too tall to be considered an ideal candidate for nose tackle, lining up next to people like Wilfork and Siliga - who are true nose tackles - allows me to do what I do best as an under 4-3 rush tackle, which is taking advantage of them eating up the double team so I can overwhelm the weak side guard...and give the tackle a big shot just for fun.

Of course, Wilfork is gone, but you drafted another huge, athletic nose guy in Malcom Brown, and with him and Siliga alternating at the nose and me and Easley at the three-tech, stopping the run and re-establishing the line of scrimmage three yards deep in the opponent's backfield should be the norm, and with ends like Chandler Jones, Sheard and Nink coming off the edge, quarterbacks are going to be running for their lives.

I don't get to the play a lot, but that's not my job - what is my job is shoving the guard back into the play, causing the running back to re-route, either funneling inside into the teeth of the run defense, or to swing wide where the perimeter defenders can close down the corner.  I am so effective at this that I can also play the five-tech as an end in the 3-4, making it possible for you to switch between the two base fronts with relative ease.

In fact, I have been recognized as a top 10 run-stuffing 3-4 defensive end both in Buffalo and now here, meaning that you have at least five talented hybrid five-techs on the roster, giving you the versatility you desire, and I'm happy to be part of that - and I also appreciate that you recognized this as well, signing me to a new two-year contract as soon as free agency started.

Let's start blowing stuff up!





University of Michigan

Work Experience:

2014 - Present - New England Patriots
                           14 Tackles, 1 pass defended
2013-2014 - Buffalo Bills
                     21 tackles
2011 - 2012 - Seattle Seahawks
                       37 tackles, 3 passes defended, 4 sacks
2007 - 2010 - Arizona Cardinals
                       54 tackles, 3 passes defended, 2 forced fumbles, 4 sacks


2014 - Super Bowl Champion
2006 - ESPN All American

Personal Information:

Born - December 29, 1984 at Rio Rancho, New Mexico
Height - 6' 6"
Weight - 350


Alan Branch Player Page - Foxborough Free Press

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