Skip to main content

Barmore, Judon Becoming Patriots New Defensive Dynamic Duo

The pair of prolific Patriots defenders have been key components to the team’s resurgence in both run and pass defense in 2021

The New England Patriots have experienced quite the renaissance in 2021.

Through their first twelve games, the Patriots have certainly flexed their muscle in the AFC. Winners of their last six straight games, they have returned to their successful ways with a familiar formula; elite coaching with smart, complementary football on both sides of the ball.

During their recent win streak, New England has averaged 35 points per game (211 points scored) on offense, and allowed an average of just 11 points per game (63 points allowed) on defense.

Though the Patriots had a handful of aesthetically pleasing moments on the offensive side of the ball, they have been thoroughly impressive on defense. For the past few weeks, head coach Bill Belichick and the Pats defensive brain trust have been successful in finding the right blend of man and zone coverages. With the Pats recent personnel growing pains in the secondary, New England has managed to confuse opposing quarterbacks with a smart mix of coverages, which has benefited both the defensive backfield and the front seven.

Some of that success can be attributed to the prowess of two key new additions to the Patriots front seven, rookie defensive tackle Christian Barmore and veteran linebacker Matt Judon. The 29-year-old ex-Baltimore Raven has transformed New England’s pass rush, leading the team with 11.5 sacks and 24 quarterback hits. Conversely, Barmore has earned his way into a prominent role along the defensive line. The duo have become quite the pass rush tandem, with at least one of them (if not both) finding their way into their opponents’ backfield.

So what has made Judon and Barmore the Pats’ next defensive ‘dynamic duo?’

Read More

The same formula with which the Patriots have rekindled their prosperity: smart, complementary football.

New England’s pair of defenders has been most effective in obvious passing situations. With Barmore drawing the attention of opposing blockers along the offensive line, Judon is often left one-on-one on the edge. This has freed the linebacker to pursue the quarterback. Against the Tennessee Titans on Sunday, Barmore took on four blockers, leaving Judon alone to gain the sack on quarterback Ryan Tannehill.

“I don’t know why they need that many people blocking him, but Barmore helps me out,” Judon told reporters on Thursday. “Sometimes they’ve gotta block him and sometimes they’ve gotta block me, but they’ve gotta pick their poison. They’ve gotta do it fast and they’ve gotta do it on the fly because we both play very fast.”

When both players are on their game, which has been more often than not in 2021, the results have led to great things on the field for the Patriots. It has also enhanced their individual abilities. In fact, it is a point not lost on Judon.

“They can put four on him [Barmore] all the time,” Judon said facetiously. “I suggest blocking Barmore with more people. I think you should take the tackle and the guard and block Barmore all the time and leave the [running] back to me. I think it would be more productive for offenses, but if they don’t listen to me, they don’t listen to me.

All kidding aside, Judon is clearly glad to have the prolific rookie on his side.

“I do appreciate him though. Just how he came in ready to work and his willingness to listen and adapt to a different play style. It shows when somebody is blocked with four people like that. It shows what they see on film and how he’s playing.”

The synergy between the two seems to be the beginning of a beautiful friendship…a partnership that has led to a great deal of success for the New England Patriots.