New England Patriots: Five Takeaways From Win Over Philadelphia Eagles

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Aug 15, 2014; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots corner back Malcolm Butler (29) and cornerback

Darrelle Revis

(24) react after the Patriots recovered a loose ball by the Philadelphia Eagles during the preseason game at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

5. Renowned Defensive Prowess…And Revis

When the Patriots revamped their defense by adding Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner (and getting everybody back from injury), we knew this unit was going to be special. Last night, we got our first look at the Pats starting defense, and man oh man it was a beautiful sight.

The starting group, minus Browner, was on the field for three drives yesterday, and gave up a grand total of zero points. The Eagles have one of the best offenses in the entire league, and Bill Belichick’s defense stoned them. Even with Malcolm Butler as one of the starting corners, there was hardly any space to be found in the secondary, as Darrelle Revis and company shut everything down. Revis was not targeted once, which is what we will see for the majority of the 2014 season.

But perhaps even more impressive was the front seven. The Pats were running a 3-4 defense with the starters, as Chandler Jones and Rob Ninkovich were acting as stand-up linebackers. Vince Wilfork, Tommy Kelly, and Joe Vellano anchored the defensive line. New England constantly got pressure on Nick Foles, with Ninkovich coming up with a key sack on an early third down. They also clogged up all the running lanes for LeSean McCoy, as they refused to give an inch to Philadelphia’s offensive line.

It’s been a long time since I have seen a Patriots defense this good, and it only makes me want to watch them even more. Hurry up, regular season!