On defense, the Pats still have some of the best in Ends Larry Eisenhauer and Bob Dec and Linebackers Addison and Nick Buoniconti, who is small hut the real thing. But they could use some help. Opponents run away from Tackle Houston Antwine—into the void on the opposite side. Holovak desperately needs another tackle, but his chief prospects—veteran Jim Lee Hunt and rookie John Magnum—seem lacking, and he may have to go trading. Jim Eraser, acquired from Kansas City, will solve the punting problem but, at 29, his All-Star linebacking days are over. Corner Back Hennessey, completely recovered from a knee injury, could be a star in his second year. The rest of the secondary, though experienced, is inconsistent.
Boston finished strong after the injury hex had departed last season, but it has always been a strange team to figure. All of a small nucleus of quality players—Parilli, Cappelletti, Nance, Graham and the defensive standouts—have to have good years for the Patriots to finish respectably in the East. They may make a race of it, but it is a long road back. Probably too long.