I know this maybe a crazy question due to Chad Ochocinco having his worse season of his career. The issue that was brought toward the media is that Chad didn’t understand the playbook. This may have been an issue earlier in the season, but after a whole season I cannot believe that he is still going through the same issues.
Watching all of the Patriot’s games this season there has been several times where Tom Brady did not look Ochocinco’s way, but there were also times where it was obvious that the chemistry was not there. It is hard to adjust to a new system after playing in the same system for several years. Ochocinco had a measly 15 catches, but his yards per catch shows that he is still a vertical threat if used correctly.
In the showdown between the Giants and Patriots earlier in the season Ochocinco was targeted a season high five times. Ochocinco did not come up with any catches, but he looked crisp on all of his routes and showed that he can still get separation. I feel that this can be the same scenario on Super Bowl Sunday only with a different outcome.
We all know that Rob Gronkowski will be playing on a hobbled ankle. Normally “Gronk” is the primary route for Tom Brady, but it will likely change. High ankle sprains are very serious so at best he will be a decoy at best rather than being the Rob Gronkowski that we all know.
Brady has an arsenal of weapons so at any given time Branch, Welker, Hernandez, and Gronkowski will garner all of the attention. That gives Ochocinco a chance to slide under the radar to make a few big plays since there will be a minimal amount of focus on him.
Bill Belichick is a wild card. You never know what to expect from the guy who looks like he has been wearing the same hooded sweatshirt from the Patriots first Super Bowl victory over the Rams. From Mike Vrabel catching touchdowns to Aaron Hernandez lining up at running back it is hard to predict Belichick. There is a chance that he will unleash No. 85 on football’s biggest stage. Ochocinco has been known as a “diva” and a “me-first” type of player. This season he has been the total opposite from what people expected. The hard work and being exiled out of Cincinnati may pay off. We shall see come Super Bowl Sunday.