Patriots Links 7/20/09 - How Can Teams Beat The Patriots?

Randy Moss of the New England Patriots beats Jabari Greer of the Buffalo Bills to catch a touchdown pass on September 23, 2007 at Gillette Stadium. New England defeated Buffalo 38-7.

Chris Brown ( details four elements the Bills must have to snap the streak and beat the Patriots.  Here is a sampling of each point.

Pressure on Brady
The Giants proved in Super Bowl XLII that getting pressure on Brady is one of the most effective means of slowing down New England’s passing attack.

Be able to adjust
The Bills have had success against the Patriots running the ball over the past few years, but rarely has it been throughout an entire game. Last year’s season finale was the latest example.  Fred Jackson ran wild starting in place of an injured Marshawn Lynch as he rumbled for 103 yards on 20 carries, averaging better than five yards per rush in the first half alone.

Big plays
Buffalo has done a decent job of converting third downs against the Patriots of late to help sustain drives. In their last four meetings they’ve converted 22-49 for a respectable 45 percent success rate. The problem is rarely have the Bills been able to sustain drives long enough to get into scoring territory, namely the red zone.

Be aggressive
Finally when you’re going against a team the caliber of a New England, you can’t play too close to the vest. You have to be aggressive. If an opponent isn’t worried about the unexpected they’ve got half the battle won.  The Bills have raised their talent level and should be able to dictate play to their opponents more often this season including New England.

Edgar Thompson (Palm Beach Post) ponders ten questions while waiting for the NFL season to start.

Will New England's Tom Brady recapture the magic of 2007?

Although he is less than 1 1/2 years removed from a 50-touchdown season, his last two games are ones he would like to forget. Brady struggled as the New York Giants shocked his 18-0 Patriots in Super Bowl XLII. Seven months later, he suffered a season-ending knee injury in the '08 season opener.

The Patriots clearly are confident he is ready, having traded Matt Cassel, who had a breakthrough season in Brady's absence. But even a three-time Super Bowl winner will have to prove himself after a major injury. Brady, 31, said he hopes to play another 10 seasons. First, he'll have to make it through one.

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