Previewing the New England Patriots Defense
Darin Alexander Baydoun
The Las Vegas Raiders were able to continue their impressive performance on offense to start this season in putting up 34 points against the New Orleans Saints.
The Raiders right now are fourth in the NFL in points per game.
They’ll have a chance to keep that going against a New England Patriots defense that got lit up in their last game against the Seattle Seahawks.
The Patriots got off to a good start defensively in their first week against the Miami Dolphins, only allowing 11 points and 269 total yards. They also recorded three interceptions.
It looked like what you would expect a Bill Belichick-coached defense to look like.
Against a more high-powered offense in the Seahawks, though, that wasn’t the case.
In that Sunday Night Football game, the Patriots' defense allowed 429 total yards, including 154 on the ground for an overall average of 5.85 yards a carry.
Seahawks quarterback Russel Wilson pretty much had his way. He completed 75 percent of his passes for 288 yards and five touchdowns, averaging 10.3 yards per attempt.
Granted, Wilson is a former Super Bowl champion who has been an elite quarterback basically ever since he entered the league.
Still, the Patriots defensive strength has often been in their back-end, with current players like veteran Devin McCourty and reigning defensive player of the year Stephon Gilmore.
The fact that they were picked apart by Wilson could be a concern for them moving forward, especially since Raiders quarterback Derek Carr has been doing his own defense dissecting to start this season.
It didn’t help that multiple of their key defenders opted out of the season due to COVID-19 concerns.
Linebacker Donta Hightower and safety Patrick Chung would have been key for this defense otherwise.
This is why it seems like the Raiders offense has a good chance on Sunday.
The Patriots offense should make it a close game, but on defense, the Patriots are relying on a number of new players.
With the unproven depth at linebacker without Hightower, an inconsistent pass rush (three sacks in two games), and a secondary that’s reeling, the Raiders' offense is primed for another standout show.
How to watch or listen to the Las Vegas Raiders versus the New England Patriots Sunday?
TV: CBS 1 PM ET/10 AM PT
Radio: Raider Nation Radio
Odds: New England -5.5
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