New England Patriots: Ranking the top defensive starters for 2018

HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 05: Devin McCourty
HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 05: Devin McCourty /
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10. Kyle Van Noy, Linebacker

Van Noy has been playing in the Patriots system for two years, proving his overall ability in different schemes. His versatility allows him to cover ground and has a solid pass rush technique.

The Patriots use Van Noy in various packages that cover tight ends and running backs. His deceptive speed coupled with his excellent football instincts make it difficult for opponents to blow past him.

The rangy linebacker has the prowess of a game changer. When the Patriots faced the Houston Texans in Week 8 of the regular season, Van Noy helped smother the Texans offense with 11 combined tackles.

Van Noy played 13 games last year while accounting for 58 total tackles and 5.5 sacks on the season.

He continues to improve due to his willingness to be coached and will prove to be an asset to the Patriots defense down the line.