2016 Season Blog.

Pats Vs Pitt.

2nd Quarter: Part II.


Greetings Pats Fans,

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Pats D Gets Aggressive.


1st and 10, Pats matched up in a 4-2 Nickel. They ran Bell. He ran for a few. "Well he's a great player. They have another great back in Williams and he did a good job," BB said. "He got downhill on us. He kind of burst through the line of scrimmage, had a little different running style than Bell. They're both great backs but just different styles. He was a problem. We dealt with him last year in the opener in 2015. If you remember, and he ran well against us there. They have great depth in their backfield. Those two guys are both really good. They're different but they're both explosive, hard to tackle and good, tough runners. Whichever one of them is in there is a problem for the defense." So he did try to come back, but Pitt probably decided that having Williams at 100% was better than have Bell at 75% or less.

2nd and 8, Pitt lined up in a 3-Wide Singleback Twins-L. Pats matched up in a 3-3 Nickel. The Pats started rushing four. Rogers faked an end around to the right. Sheard dropped out of the rush and ran out to the flat when Rogers kept going over to his side. Ben had too much time again. They have to start hitting him. He dumped if off to Williams in the left flat. Williams ran for a First.

1st and 10, Pitt lined up in a Trips Right Weak Shotgun. The Pats matched up in a 3-4 Nickel, with Chung in at ILB. Ben threw over the middle to Brown, and McClellin took him down fast.

2nd and 7, Pitt lined up Empty. Pats matched up in a 3-3 Nickel. Brown broke free, and almost hit Big Ben. But he was just pushed past him at the last second. Ben was able to step up, and hit Williams sneaking down the sideline. He just scooted out of bounds for a First.

1st and 10, Pitt lined up in a Trips-Right Weak shotgun. Pats Match up in a 4-2 Nickel with five guys on the line. They ran a Slant to Rogers, and Ryan took him down fast at midfield. And this is what the Pats defense does.

Ben had just completed ten straight passes, but only for 71-yards. "It was a challenge and I think we all took it personally," Ryan said. "We understood that we had to win our matchups. They have a lot of talent and are a great organization, and Big Ben is a great quarterback. We had an opportunity on a great stage to go out and play one-on-one with these guys and I think we did a great job. I think Malcolm [Butler] did a tremendous job. I think Eric Rowe played a perfect game. And I think I started a little slow but answered the call when I needed to. We're happy with the win." They make you work for every yard.

2nd and 3, Pitt lined up in a 3-Wide Singleback Stack-Left 1 for 1 run. The Pats matched up in a 4-3, with two OLB on the blindside and both Chung and McCourty in the Box. They ran Williams and the Pats stuffed him. Sheard and Branch hit him first, and Van Noy hit him last.

3rd and 2, Pitt lined up Empty. The Pats matched up in a 3-3 Nickel, with five guys on the line. They rushed three. Brown dropped out of the rush to cover the flat. It gave Ben too much time. He threw to Brown in a hole in the zone on the second level.

1st and 10, Pitt lined up in a 3-Wide Strong shotgun at the 32. The Pats matched up a in a 3-3 Nickel.  Ben threw in rhythm to James on a quick Out. 

1st and 10 at the 21, Pitt lined up in a 3-Wide Strong shotgun. Big Ben had time, and lofted a softy to Hamilton in the Endzone. But Ryan was close enough to make him drop it. Nice coverage.

2nd and 10, 3-Wide Singleback. Pats in a 3-3 Nickel. They ran Williams and Brown and Branch took him down at the Two-Minute warning. 3rd and 9 at the 19, Pitt lined up in a Trips-Left Strong shotgun. Pats matched up in a 2-4 Nickel. The rush couldn't get to Ben again. He lofted one to James.

He was taken down inches short. Chung tackled him from behind and Harmon crashed into him at the half-yard line and drove his head into the turf. "That was huge. I told [Harmon] as soon as he got in the sideline that was a big tackle, from Chung hustling and then [Harmon] making sure he didn't get across the goal line," McCourty said. "That gave us a shot and that's how we play defensively. It's all about the next play. It's about everybody fighting hard to finish and I think that's what we were able to do. This defense has been well balanced with the ability to adjust to what teams are doing.

"Obviously, we had a good game plan coming in, then as the game progressed, with no Bell out there, we got a lead, the passing game being more prevalent, we were able to just make certain adjustments and do different things that helped us get the win at the end, so really just all 11 guys being attention and being ready to make changes and trying to play well." Chung showed great hustle catching up to him.

Then Harmon slammed in and stopped him a half yard from the Endzone. "It was big, but what was even bigger was what the defense did after that. All I did was keep him (from scoring) and they were on the one-yard line," Harmon said rather humbly. "We've got to talk about what the defensive line and the linebackers did stuffing them on the first two plays and then got negative yardage to put them in a third-and-five or third-and-six. Then they held them to three so that was a great job by the defensive front and the linebackers really stuffing that line." They all rolled out of bounds in a heap.

The refs signaled touchdown. "We always talk about swarming and getting to the ball," Harmon said. "Not leaving your man out to dry. I saw the ball thrown over there and I wanted to make sure I got there before he crossed the line. It ended up being a big play for the defense." That swarm literally saved a TD.

1st and Goal from the 1, Goal line vs Goal line. Chung blitzed from the edge and got Williams two yards behind the LOS. "Those guys really work well together, and we've had some moving parts in there, guys playing different roles. Shea and obviously High. Kyle [and] Elandon. Those guys all played a significant role for us," BB said. "The communication at times is a little bit challenging if the green dot is on one guy and he's not on there then it falls to somebody else. They do a good job of that. Our safeties do a good job with that communication as well. So we've been able to handle it. But it's a little bit of a challenge when the same person is not in there for every single snap as far as that part of it goes.

"Dont'a has given us great leadership all year. Again, it's a young group. Kyle is new. Shea is new. Shea was really a defensive end and outside linebacker and then we moved him back in midseason. Elandon is a young player so Dont'a has really done a good job of bringing that group together, giving them great leadership, helping the communication and those guys have embraced it and they've grown themselves. That's a good room.

"Coach Flores has done a real good job with that group, the transition that we had in midseason and so forth, but he's done a great job of improving that every week and those guys work hard. They care. They try to get it better. When we make a mistake they correct it and work hard to fix it. That's been a big improvement over the course of the last second half of the season. It's been huge for us defensively." Hightower and McClellin got in on the tackle as well, and Elandon Roberts got in a hit.

2nd and goal from the Three. Valentine took Williams down. "I was just trying to make the play," Valentine said. "I didn't know when they handed it off. I just ran in there and tried to make a play." Valentine burst right past the ORG, and dived at Williams in the backfield and tackled him.

That was a truly great play by Valentine. "I think it was a really big stop. They could have went into the half with momentum," Valentine said. "Just to make a big stop right there was really good and it was what our team needed. We came out of the half with a good pace and we got a three-and-out. It just kept rolling for us so I felt like that was a pretty big stop and I felt like it helped the team out a lot." It was another huge game changing play by the underrated Pats-D.

That was pure domination by the Pats D-line. "I think the key is the pad level and the surge that we got and just understanding what type of run they're going to have for us and where they're running the ball at," Flowers said. "It was a good play call and a lot of our guys executed well." Branch and Flowers burst into the backfield as well.

3rd and goal, Ben missed Rogers in the flat. "That's a challenging situation for the defense because of number one, the skill level of the players that are involved. The offense has patterns to beat whichever way you want to play it," BB said. "So if you lock it, then they want to pick you. If you combo it and play some type of inside-out coverage, then if both guys go the same way, double inside or double outside, then the player that's waiting for the other part of the release gets out-leveraged and they have you there. So there's some different combinations that you can do defensively, and offensively there are several combinations that you can run that beat the combination that the defense is using, or give you the best leverage chance of beating it." But they couldn't beat Rowe and Ryan on that play.

McCourty had to let James burst up the middle, so he couldn't pick off Rowe. "So that's really what that is. I'd say for the most part whatever pattern is called is probably going to get run by the offense. I don't think they would necessarily change the pattern based on what they think the call might be, but they could I guess if they knew for sure what it was," BB continued about the play. "It's really defensively trying to get the right leverage on what you think the pattern is going to be. If you just play it the way you feel most confident in playing it or depending on which receiver is where and so forth, what the overall formation or look is. Maybe you prefer one over another based on a certain tendency. But that's the game, it's a game within a game there matching three-on-three, three-on four, two-on-three, two-on-two, those combinations." Ryan took the inside WR who was lined up outside.

Rogers and Coates crossed behind James to try and pick off one of the DBs. "Pittsburgh does that a lot. They're very good at it. They have a lot of tight formation looks and they motion into them at times as well," BB said. "Also they add another level. They didn't on that play, but that adds another level of communication and coordination with those players when those formations get built with motion as opposed to aligned. But again, one of the advantages of aligning in them is to read the defense and kind of see how they're going to play them so it gives the quarterback a cleaner look. That's a little bit of a cat and mouse game there." McCourty, Rowe, and Ryan had to play Trips-right perfectly, and they did.

They kept them out of the Endzone three straight great defensive plays. "Honestly, I don't think anyone said anything. When that circumstance comes up, we have to go out there and keep them out of the end zone," Branch said. "We did a great job doing that. We didn't really think to make any motivational speeches or anything. We just went out and did it." All three levels of the defense had to make multiple plays to keep them out of the endzone.

That kept the Pats ahead over a TD. "It was big for us," Long said. "It kept it a two-score ball game so it was a momentum swing and from there we really didn't look back." Pitt never recovered from the Goal Line Stand.

The Pats defense really stood up to one of the best O-lines in football on the Stand. "Those plays are good team defensive plays. When everybody [is] in a situation like that. Especially in the running game, when everybody does their job and defeats the blocker and wins the gap that they're in. The runner has got to run somewhere and that's the guy that'll make the tackle," BB said. "Or if somebody eats up a couple of blocks and somebody comes free like Vince [my man Valentine] did. Then he is the guy to make the tackle. It's good team defense. It's everybody doing a great job and doing a great job of tackling. The guys that got the opportunity to make the play made it, but they couldn't have done it without all of the other people around them. Those two plays combined with the third-down play, which is part of the whole thing, because you can have two good plays and then one bad one and it all gets erased, so it was a big three play sequence for us." They beat the Pitt O-line up on that goal line stand.

The Stand was proof again of how hard it is to score a TD on this defense. "Yeah! I mean big. We've seen multiple times games or in some cases seasons come down to a yard, and so that was a big yard there at the end of the half," BB said. "The tackle [by Chung and Harmon], and then the 1st down goal line play was stopped. Valentine got the second one. And then we were able to get a stop there on 3rd down." The Pats will be favored in the Super Bowl, because of their defense.

They will have to be just as big and tough against a much more dynamic Falcon offense. "So that was a big four point swing and then the stop in the end of the third quarter or fourth quarter? Fourth quarter, right? Obviously it was really 11 points there that we saved. So yeah, it was huge. That was huge. Our red area defense has gotten better throughout the course of the year. It wasn't the first quarter of the season. We've always put a lot of time into it but the results improved and that helped us again tonight." If the Pats D limits the Falcons to field goals then the Pats win easy. Pats-17. Pitt-9. Companies  

Be A Citizen! Not a Subject! 

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IF YOU DESTROY THE EARTH'S CRUST WE ALL DIE!!!!!!! The only way We The People can survive is if we attack Congressional offices and tell them that we cannot survive if President Jerkballs destroys our Land, Water, and Oxygen. Help save America, please!

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