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The New England Patriots, despite the general consensus that they’re an offensive juggernaut, are only 3-3 this season after losing in Seattle yesterday.And if they fall short of expectations this season (i.e., don’t make the Super Bowl), it’ll be because of one thing: the pass defence.
The Patriots are bad in just about every pass defence statistic you can think of: yards per attempt (27th), completion percentage (25th), QB rate (27th), and yards allowed per game (28th).
But letting up big plays as really been their undoing. Through the first six games, New England has allowed 33 passes of 20 yards or more. That’s the worst in the league by a lot (the second-to-last ranked team has let up 26 big plays), and nearly double the league average (~17).
Yesterday, this weakness was on full display.
The Seahawks were down 23-10 with 10 minutes left, but staged a comeback with the help of two big passing plays: a 51-yard bomb that set up a touchdown to make it 23-17, and this 46-yard TD pass with less than two minutes left to seal the game at 24-23:
The Patriots are solid in every other phase of the game. But if they’re going to make another Super Bowl run, they need to work out how to limit the big plays that have plagued them so far.
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