I'm finding it difficult to understand the mind of a Patriots fan lately. If you go to sites like this and this, it seems Adam Vinatieri is a washed up, money grubbing jerk who likes to wear women's clothing when no one is looking and has lots of kiddie porn stashed in his locker.
I'm willing to bet good money that had I bothered to log onto these sites two days ago, Vinatieri would have been labeled a clutch player that's vital to the Patriots roster, and that management should do everything to re-sign this hard-nosed, ice-in-his-veins, good Christian boy that symbolizes all that is wholesome and great in New England.
Amazing how things change for Patriots fans when one of their best players jumps ship and signs with a bitter rival. My favorite line is that the Vinatieri signing is all part of some big master plan by Belichick.
This signing signals the end of the Patriots, in my mind. They've lost Willie McGinest, David Givens, Tim Dwight, Christian Fauria, Tyronne Poole, and now Vinatieri. The biggest was Vinatieri. The three most important figures during the Patriots dominant Super Bowl runs were Belichick, Brady, and Vinatieri. Now, Vinatieri is gone, along with Belichick's longtime assistants Romeo Crennel, Charlie Weiss, and now Eric Mangini who is the new head coach for the NY Jets. Chad Brown and Duane Starks, the players brought in to replace longtime playmakers Ty Law and Roman Phifer, turned out to be busts.
None of these loses have been replenished with anything resembling a suitable replacement. Add the this the uncertainty of Rodney Harrison's and Corey Dillon's health, and the Patriots look like a franchise in serious decline. If you look at them last year, they weren't even all that good. They won 10 games in a bad division and got spanked in the playoffs by a mediocre Denver team.
Now, after saying all this, I will freely admit that I have been wrong about the Patriots before. They have a way of making lots of "experts" look like fools. But I don't think I'm wrong in saying this: the Patriots are in decline, and their fans know it but can't come to grips with it. This is why they are lashing out at one of the greatest players ever to put on a Pats uniform. Perhaps Vinatieri also saw the writing on the wall in Pats Land. He knew New England could match the Colts offer. It will be interesting to read the stuff that comes out in the next few days.