New England Patriots at Denver Broncos: Breaking Down the Matchups
By Hal Bent
Denver Linebackers Weakened by Injury
Those injuries mentioned before left Denver with undersized special teams players Corey Nelson and Zaire Anderson manning the middle. If Denver is forced to play Nelson and Anderson again, look for New England to run Blount at them and attack the pair in coverage with receiving running backs James White and Dion Lewis and exploit those mismatches.
The Patriots have a running game that ranks seventh in the NFL with 1,502 yards and 15 touchdowns. While they are averaging only 4.0 yards per attempt, the Patriots have continued to stick with the running game to supplement a strong deep passing attack and potent short passing attack. The running game has helped keep pass rushers off of Brady so far in 2016.
That running game will have to be strong on Sunday afternoon as Brady has his hands full trying to throw against the Broncos. Last week the Titans passed for just 73 net yards against the Broncos but somehow won the game. Only Atlanta (250 yards), San Diego (246 yards), and New Orleans (293 yards) have topped 200 yards passing against the Broncos in 2016.