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Under the radar issue for the year: Creating turnovers

Rob0729 Supporter Supporter
Nov 14, 2006
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With all the focus on the offensive and special teams problems and the defense doing very well keeping opposing teams from scoring this year, one thing that has flown under the radar is how until recent weeks how few turnovers the Patriots are creating. With one game left this year, the Pats currently have 17 total turnovers which is tied for the sixth worse in the league. By comparison, the Pats had 30 turnovers in both 2022 and 2021. And turnovers have always been the hallmark of a Patriots' defense.

In the last four games, the Patriots have had six of those 17 turnovers and it has played a big part in the Pats being competitive in all those games and being 2-2. The Pats have had issue moving the ball outside the 20s no matter if it was Mac or Zappe. Other than yesterday, the Pats either scored on or were set up on the opponent's side to score points. Against the Steelers, the Pats intercepted the ball on the Steelers' 11. That led to an 11 yard TD drive. Against the Chiefs, the Pats intercepted Mahomes twice. The first one put the Pats on the Chiefs' 9 yard line and led to an one yard FG drive. The second put the Pats on the Chiefs' 29 leading to a TD drive. Against the Broncos, they recovered a fumbled kick return in the end zone for a TD. The Pats scored 64 points over those three games and 24 of them were direct results of turnovers.

Of course the loss of Gonzalez and Judon most likely played a big role in this lack of turnover production. And moving Dugger to more of a free safety role and not having a true free safety probably also played a big role. But it will need to be an issue that needs to be fixed next year.
Opposing offenses can stay patient knowing the Pats offense can’t score. Judon out and Uche massively regressing hurt the pass rush this season. They don’t have CB’s that will make QB’s pay which is why they drafted Gonzalez.
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People also ignore the loss of Marcus Jones too. I think in part because Jack Jones was being a dink but also because he's an athletic freak he was trending towards being one of top 3 corners.

And since Jack was a dink and Gonzalez got hurt that only left Jonathan Jones and Bryant as 2 of our intended 5 CBs.
They've also giving up too many on offense, it's one thing not to get a lot but another to give up a lot.
Teams go up quickly against us and stay there the entire time. They know they will win regardless of how safe they play it. This is the main reason our losses have been close as well.

Defensive turnovers are much more a result of offensive mistakes/ aggressiveness than great defensive play.
The Pats D has been unlucky too not coming away with the ball when the other team fumbles.
I think losing Judon and Gonzo so early definitely played a part in the lack of turnovers.

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