Defense was the cornerstone of the Patriots’ three Super Bowl victories between 2001 and 2004, and stellar play from the secondary had much to do with it. Now, with the addition of Darrelle Revis, arguably the best defensive back in football, coach Bill Belichick has more flexibility than ever to implement his defensive strategy, opines ESPN.com’s Jeffri Chadiha.
Revis’ inclusion to the team means good things for the rest of his defensive counterparts, per Chadiha. Safety Devin McCourty can take more chances, defensive end Chandler Jones could add to his 11.5 sacks last season, and the defense could regain the swagger last seen in the Romeo Crennel days of yesteryear.
More from the defending AFC East champs below…
- The cornerback group has the potential to be the deepest it’s been in Belichick’s 15 years as head coach, writes ESPNBoston.com’s Mike Reiss. A projection places Revis at left cornerback, former Seahawk Brandon Browner at right cornerback, and veteran Kyle Arrington manning the slot. Browner will serve a suspension for the first four games of the season, and Reiss pegs reserves Alfonzo Dennard or Logan Ryan as potential replacements during that span.
- Wide receiver Julian Edelman, loaded with a four-year, $17MM contract and fresh off a 105-catch season, said he’s working to not make the same mistakes twice in an attempt to avoid Belichick’s wrath, reports the Associated Press’ Howard Ulman.
- Linebacker James Anderson, signed by the Patriots earlier this week, undergoes a scrutinous film study by ESPN.com’s Reiss, who surmises that the former Bear excels in pass coverage but is not a stack-and-shed linebacker.
- The transition from Carolina to New England has not been an easy one for wide receiver Brandon LaFell, whose two main goals are learning the offense and not getting embarrassed by Revis, writes The Boston Globe’s Ben Volin and Shalise Manza Young.
- In an impressively thorough writeup, Sports Illustrated’s Doug Farrar breaks down first-round pick Dominique Easley‘s game and how the former Florida defensive lineman could redefine New England’s defensive fronts.