Vide: Best of 2013 Patriots (by GORILLAKING7)
Very good question. I think the place I would start is their pickiness about their edge players whether you want to call them defensive ends or outside linebackers. Last year it seemed like it was a log jam at defensive end heading into camp and before you know it, they have no depth there.
I think they need to embrace designated pass rushers a little more, even if they can’t drop into coverage or maybe aren’t the best edge setter.
I also think they didn’t do enough at defensive tackle in the draft especially. They tried in free agency but they never replaced Mike Wright and Jarvis Green and I think that really hurt them, not only in the pass rush department, but by also forcing them to overuse Wilfork.
Of course, if Albert Haynesworth, Ron Brace, Kyle Love or Brandon Deaderick somehow worked out we might not be saying the same thing.
They might’ve shown a little more patience with some of the wide receivers as well. Felt like they might’ve been a little quick to give up on guys like Brandon Tate and some others. They did see a lot more of those guys in practice so they were probably justified in moving on, but the receiver situation never should’ve gotten to where it was last offseason.
Finally, I think this is the issue now, they need for reinforce the middle of the line. They need to find at least one more impact interior OL whether it’s at guard or center, or preferably both.
Willie McGinest, Christian Fauria, Shane Vereen and Stevan Ridley talk New England’s dynasty (by Cathy Bridges)
It’s an interesting question because yes, they do work together, but against quarterbacks like Peyton Manning and Tom Brady, who get the ball out quick, it’s hard for pass rush to get to them in time, at least from the edges.
So in today’s NFL, where the receivers have great size and all the advantages once they get past the five-yard contact window, you definitely need to have multiple cornerbacks who can be physical and press at the line of scrimmage.
But I also think that interior pass rush is vital as well. The guys on the inside can make a difference against quarterbacks who get the ball out quick. I’ve been beating this drum for a while now and I think the Pats have some promising pieces in place with Chris Jones (in a sub-package rotational role), Armond Armstead, and even Chandler Jones sliding inside.
I still dream of what a guy like Dominique Easley could do as well. He explodes off the ball and would really provide instant chaos in the quarterback’s face.
Those are the elements you need and you need them consistently. Especially in the playoffs against the best quarterbacks.