I will make a guess that the Defense will be statistically much better this year. Not just from improved play though. No one seems to note amidst all the scoring from the Offense, that the Time of Possession was lopsidedly in favor of the other team. The Defense spent almost 32 minutes per game on the field. Belichick can't and won't let that continue. I suggest that Belichick is going to remedy that weakness, and will automatically make the Defense look better, since it will just spend less time on the field. What has Belichick done, that like Kremlinologists reading positions on the Dais for Communist bigwigs, can we predict from what is going on? We do know we must do that, since Belichick is as close-mouthed as any in the Kremlin ever were, to true intentions. He prefers to just spring his innovations and even then, make the opposing Coaches figure out what he is doing. 1) Belichick signed 3 FB types to compete at RB. He seldom has had any. Except that Cory Dillon and Antowain Smith were near FB sized RBs. 2) Belichick drafted and signed several very Big OL the past few years. Seabass, Nate, and Marcus, as well as Connelly are much bigger than their predecessors were. 3) Even the OL reserves like Gallery are much bigger. I suspect this portends a much more ground oriented Offense that scores, but takes more time off the clock while doing so. Historically, the Pats linemen were good sized but more oriented to agility and movement, than sheer size. Now Dante has both. 4) Belichick is loading up on Good size RBs. The RBC has a bias to bigger backs now. Really only Woody is a small change-of-pace back now. 5) Now unlike before, all the RBs can catch, so they will likely be on the field even longer. 6) Belichick saw and can anticipate that Brady's long passing accuracy, the weakest par to his game all along, is fading as he ages. This is sometimes diagnosed as lack of a deep WR, but that is only a portion of the perceived problem. 7) Belichick has loaded up on accomplished [older], deep WRs, to alleviate one side of that perceived problem. OTOH, a "ground and pound" running game makes the deep opportunities for it, less necessary too. So even if the Defense is no better than before, which I doubt, it will spend 10-20% less time on the field, so it can't but help produce better stats. What say you?