VA
  • TGT on YouTube
  • About TGT
  • The TGT Team
  • How TGT rates
  • Responsible Gambling Advice
  • Contact Our Team
  • Writers Wanted
  • Content Disclaimer
  • Affiliate Disclosure
Contains commercial content
Billboard Left
Billboard Left
The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / Patriots’ week 17 Defensive Film Review: A new beginning

Patriots’ week 17 Defensive Film Review: A new beginning

Publish Date: 01/06/2023
Fact checked by: Mike Goodpaster

The New England Patriots defense has been the strong point of this team all season long. That does not mean that it was always smooth sailing for this defense. After consecutive losses to the Minnesota Vikings and the Buffalo Bills, in which the defense allowed wide receivers Justin Jefferson and Stefon Diggs to have excellent performances, there was an identity crisis.

The coaching staff returned to the drawing board and flipped their defensive strategy upside down. They changed from a defense that frequently played man to man coverage to a defense that plays zone coverage almost exclusively. The results? So far, they have been impressive.

Since the 24-10 loss to the Bills in week 13, the Patriots have played more zone coverage than any other team in the NFL, according to Sports Info Solutions. In their 23-21 win over the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, they utilized zone coverage more than 80 per cent of the time.

How exactly has this helped the defense, and who has benefited the most? Well, the pass rush has been revitalized. In the initial three games after their week ten bye, the Patriots defense combined for 21 total pressures (sacks, QB hits and hurries), generating pressure at a 19.6 per cent clip. Since their philosophy changed, the defense has had 64 total pressures in their last four games, generating pressure at a 33.5 per cent clip.

It remains unknown whether this style of defense can hold up against the more explosive offenses in the league. Typically, zone coverage is very strong when the pass rush gets home but can be gashed if the offensive protection holds up. With all that being said, let’s take a closer look at some individual performances:

Defensive Tackle Christian Barmore

 Barmore was a one-man wrecking crew on Sunday afternoon. On 28 pass rush snaps, Barmore registered one sack, three QB hits and three hurries. He was only in on five run defense snaps and recorded one stuff.

Returning from injury in week 15, Barmore did not look to be at full strength in the last two matchups. Against the Dolphins, he reminded fans why there was so much optimism around the second-year defensive tackle heading into the season.

Matthew Judon and Josh Uche have done an incredible job this season generating pressure from the edge, but the lack of interior pressure allowed opposing quarterbacks to step into the pocket and throw without much pressure in their face. Barmore changed that on Sunday and was constantly in the Miami backfield. The hope is Barmore has a strong finish to this season and can carry his momentum into next season.

Safety Kyle Dugger

 Two pick-sixes in three weeks have Kyle Dugger’s name all over social media and NFL highlight reels, but Patriots fans have been patiently waiting for Dugger to round out into an all-around defensive back. He has been a difference-maker in the run game since he was drafted, but Dugger’s plays in space in recent weeks have Patriots fans very excited.

Dugger’s improved play in coverage is a testament to his work ethic, both on the field and in the film room. He is learning to read the eyes of the quarterback but is not overreacting to any action by the offense. He showed great poise and anticipation on the pick-six against Miami, dropping to his middle zone and quickly recognising where Teddy Bridgewater wanted to go with the ball. He used his great athleticism to make yet another game-changing play.

Defensive Backs Jonathan Jones, Myles Bryant and Jabrill Peppers

 I grouped these three defensive backs together because I thought they were excellent at doing their jobs. It has been some time since that mantra echoed in Foxborough, but it was evident this time around.

The Patriots defensive coaching staff has done a great job in changing the defense’s structure seemingly overnight and playing to their players’ strengths. Instead of asking their defensive backs to play in press-man coverage, they were asked to disguise their alignment and make tackles in space. Both of those boxes were checked.

Jones, Bryant and Peppers combined for 14 tackles, and none allowed a broken tackle. They also consistently changed their defensive alignment to not tip their hand coverage-wise pre-snap. All in all, a really solid performance by the Patriots’ secondary.

Billboard Left
Billboard Left
Read Also
Esteban de Jesus, Roberto Duran y AIDS (1972-89)
Many of us dream of celebrity sports fame, but only cruel individuals ...
Grading every NFL team’s picks from the 2021 NFL Draft
Quickly, click away if you’re going to get upset by reading draft ...
SI Sportsbook Promo
Sam Teets 2021 NFL three-round predictive mock draft 6.0
This is a predictive NFL mock draft and my final of the ...
Ranking the top 200 prospects in the 2021 NFL Draft
This is my third and final big board for the 2021 NFL ...
Daniel K’s NFL Mock Draft 3.0
1)Jacksonville Trevor Lawrence QB Clemson We knew who it was going to ...
Top 100 remaining 2021 NFL free agents after Day 1
This is the most up-to-date list of available NFL free agents following ...
Sam Teets’ top 60: 2021 NFL Draft prospect rankings
With the 2021 NFL Combine canceled, we won’t have a chance to ...
Ranking the top 200 players in the NFL ahead of the 2021 season
This list isn’t based solely on performances from the 2020 NFL season. ...
Sportsbook of the month
SI Sportsbook - Get your Free Bet now! Get your Free Bet now!
Latest News
AFC Championship Bengals vs Chiefs Odds, Tips and Predictions 01/29/23
📅 Date: Sunday, January, 29 🕚 Game Time: ...
NFC Championship 49ers vs Eagles Odds, Tips and Predictions 01/29/23
📅 Date: Sunday, January, 29 🕚 Game Time: ...
Ty’s Take: Bengals vs Chiefs AFC Championship
After starting the season 0-2, many people wrote ...
Our Latest YouTube Videos
Video: AFC 🏈Championship Game Preview: Bengals vs Chiefs
AFC Championship Game Preview: Bengals vs Chiefs
Video: NFC🏈 Championship Game Preview: 49ers vs Eagles
NFC Championship Game Preview: 49ers vs Eagles
Video: Bengals🏈 Weekly Show W/Joe Kelly: Bengals vs Chiefs Preview
Bengals Weekly Show W/Joe Kelly: Bengals vs Chiefs Preview
Betting Tips
Sportsbook of the month
SI Sportsbook - Get your Free Bet now! Get your Free Bet now!
Top Betting Sites
Top Betting Bonuses
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook Review
97/100
DraftKings
DraftKings
DraftKings Review
96/100
FanDuel
FanDuel
FanDuel Review
94/100
PointsBet
PointsBet
PointsBet Review
94/100
BetMGM
BetMGM
BetMGM Review
93/100
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook Bonus
BET $20 GET $200 IN FREE BETS
T&Cs apply
9.7/10
First deposit only | 21+ & located in VA | Promo code as seen| A qualifying bet is $20 or more | Min odds of +120 or more | Free Bet Tokens credited after bet is settled and expire after 7 days | Free Bet stakes not included in winnings | Please Gamble Responsibly - Gambling Problem? VA: CALL 1-888-532-3500 | Full T&C apply
DraftKings
DraftKings Bonus
20% up to $1000
T&Cs apply
9.6/10
FanDuel
FanDuel Bonus
Bet $5, Get $150 in Bonus Bets
T&Cs apply
9.4/10
BetMGM
BetMGM Bonus
100% up to $1000
T&Cs apply
9.3/10
BetRivers.com
BetRivers.com Bonus
100% up to $500
T&Cs apply
9.2/10
Our Team
Mike GoodpasterAuthor IconJosh SchwartzSamuel TeetsMark Lewis
+8
Mike Goodpaster
Mike Goodpaster
Chief Editor
Author Icon
Christopher Carlson
Content Writer
Josh Schwartz
Josh Schwartz
Editor
Samuel Teets
Samuel Teets
US Sports Veteran
Mark Lewis
Mark Lewis
Editor
Simon Briffa
Simon Briffa
Sports Editor
Chris Benedict
Chris Benedict
Editor
Author Icon
Malik Zorrok
Author
Author Icon
Daniel Kornhauser
Author
John Raspanti
John Raspanti
Author
Author Icon
Buddy Gibbs
Author
Brian Coburn
Brian Coburn
Author
Peter Bonahoom
Peter Bonahoom
Author
Find out what the legends have to say about sports this week....

If you enjoy hearing from the legends of pro sports, then be sure to tune into “The Grueling Truth” sports shows, “Where the legends speak”

Contact us: [email protected]

Players must be 21 years of age or older or reach the minimum age for gambling in their respective state and located in jurisdictions where online gambling is legal. Please play responsibly. Bet with your head, not over it. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, and wants help, call or visit: (a) the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey at 1-800-Gambler or www.800gambler.org; or (b) Gamblers Anonymous at 855-2-CALL-GA or www.gamblersanonymous.org.

This site is using Cloudflare and adheres to the Google Safe Browsing Program. We adapted Google's Privacy Guidelines to keep your data safe at all times.

sdfgfdgcsdfgfdgcww
Move to Top
Close
Stake.us Exclusive Bonus
5% Rakeback
Promo Code
Copy
Visit Site
T&Cs apply, 21+
Payment Methods
Bitcoin
Litecoin
Ethereum
Dogecoin
Highlights
  • Social casino loved by Drake!
  • Play Plinko, Hilo, Crash and more!
  • Get Stake Cash bonuses every day!
Stake Originals
Dice
Crash
Plinko
Mines
×
Your Bonus Code:
The bonus offer of was already opened in an additional window. If not, you can open it also by clicking the following link:
Visit Site