Patriots RBs vs Rams Front Seven – Razor’s Edge New England
The Patriots rushing offense is averaging 115.8 yards per game and although the running game wasn’t featured a week ago against the Jets, the Patriots did a solid job of running when they did, gaining 95 yards on just 18 carries before Tom Brady did a couple of kneel-downs to end the game.
The Patriots now have a legitimate three-headed rushing attack with LeGarrette Blount handling the big back duties with James White and Dion Lewis running the change of pace duties. Blount has had a fantastic year, gaining 869 yards with 12 touchdowns.
The Rams have a fast, physical front seven but have been up and down against the run. Linebackers Alec Ogletree and Mark Barron are the play-making run stuffers with the front four setting the table. They allow an average of 112.3 yards per game.
Look for the Patriots to mix things up with a lot of LaGarrette Blount and mixing in Lewis and White to keep the defense honest. Against their nickel base look, the Patriots should find success running between the tackles. The key matchup is C David Andrews against the big DT Michael Brockers.
Patriots WRs vs Rams Secondary – Razor’s Edge New England
The Patriots passing game has plenty of weapons for Tom Brady to bring to bear against a stingy pass defense of the Rams. With Martellus Bennett filling in for Rob Gronkowski, expect the Patriots to show much more three and four wide receiver looks on offense. With Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, Malcolm Mitchell and Danny Amendola, they can pressure the coverages of the Rams.
LA has been good against the pass allowing just 227.5 yards per game in 2016. Last week in New Orleans was an anomaly rather than the norm. Despite not having a ton of sacks (22) the Rams can get after the passer and bring pressure. The guy they’ll look to is DT Aaron Donald who can collapse the pocket from the interior. DE Robert Quinn is a beast on the edge.
While the Rams have been solid in pass defense, look for Brady to hit on the short strikes using the quickness of the receivers off the line. With the “Pony” backfield of James White and Dion Lewis in the passing game, there will be too many weapons to guard against and the Patriots should find success throwing the ball. Once they can establish the short passing game, look for Brady to use Hogan and Mitchell and try to test the deeper throws down the field.
Next up the Los Angeles offense:
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Tags: 2016 NFL Season 2016 Patriots season Aaron Donald Bill Belichick Brian Quick Buffalo Bills Chris Hogan Danny Amendola Dion Lewis Dont'a Hightower Jabaal Sheard Jared Goff Jeff Fisher Julian Edelman Kenny Britt LaGarrette Blount Malcolm Butler Martellus Bennett New England Patriots NFL Patriots Patriots edge rushers Pats picks predictions Rob Gronkowski Rob Ninkovich Robert Quinn St. Louis Rams Tavon Austin Todd Gurley Tom Brady Trey Flowers