5 Bold Predictions for the Regular Season
#4 – Patriots Finish with Top 5 Defense
Aug 26, 2016; Charlotte, NC, USA; New England Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler (21) puts a shoulder to Carolina Panthers running back Cameron Artis-Payne (34) as defensive end Chris Long (95) comes in to assist during the pre-season game at Bank of America Stadium. Patriots win 19-17 over the Panthers. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
This could be an exciting season to watch the Patriots front seven. They have building towards having a versatile, a deep defensive front for a while, and it seems as if Belichick and DC Matt Patricia finally have one.
With offseason acquisitions such as DE Chris Long, LB Shea McClellin, and LB Barkveious Mingo, the Patriots will now be unpredictable and may prove to be a headache to gameplan against. Let’s not forget that New England does boast one of the top LB units in the league, along with dominant pass rushing from Jabaal Sheard. DE Trey Flowers has proved to be dependable. The sophomore player is looking to play in his first full season. Rookie Anthony Johnson also burst on the scene this preseason and could be effective coming off the bench.
Teams will struggle to consistently know who is dropping back and who is rushing thanks to the defence’s versatility, and of course when QBs have less time in the pocket, it makes things easier for an already dominant secondary.
Not to say this unit will certainly be better than the Denver Broncos‘ defense, but it could certainly give them a run for their money.
Next: #3 -Gronkasararus & Martellus Rex