By: Derek Havens
In New England’s week 12 match up against the Philadelphia Eagles, their ability to stop running back LeSean McCoy may be the key to victory; however, that is easier said than done. The Eagles tailback has been dominant at times in his young career and can take over games. Here are a few statistics to keep in mind for Sunday. –
Jerod Mayo will play a key role in containing Eagles RB LeSean McCoy on Sunday. (FILE:Icon/SMI)
– McCoy is incredibly fast and is used in several different ways by Andy Reid in the Eagles offense. He runs inside, outside, in the wildcat package, end arounds, catches passes out of the backfield – he is a true weapon for this Philadelphia team. The 23-year-old out of Pittsburgh is on pace for the best season in his three-year career.
– Watching the Eagles star running back on tape, he loves to cut back. McCoy can turn on a dime and will reverse field without hesitation. Jerod Mayo and the Patriots linebackers will play a large role containing the tailback Sunday afternoon.
– McCoy has rushed for an NFL leading 1, 019 yards on 188 carries this season. He has also rushed for 10 touchdowns through the first 11 weeks.
– His 5.4 yard-per-carry (ypc) average is also near the top in the league among running backs with at least 100 carries.
– The running back is not only a threat running, he is also an exceptional pass catcher out of the backfield. In fact, McCoy has 34 catches for 198 yards and two touchdowns so far this season.
The Patriots ability to contain McCoy will undoubtedly be one of the keys to the game. While these statistics may make that out to be a tough task, it is not impossible. Yes, the Patriots defense has struggled this year, but Bill Belichick has always done a great job of taking away what opposing teams do best and the unit has improved of late.
Hopefully, the defense can continue to build off their recent performance and continue to make strides. I believe the Pats do enough to contain McCoy, resulting in another New England victory. Look for my full pre-game thoughts and score prediction Saturday morning.
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