New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick broke down tape from Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos to show how the Patriots won the game on special teams. Belichick highlights the muffed punt, the kick return for a touchdown, the blocked punt, and a great job by the kickoff coverage unit. You can watch the video here.
On the muffed punt, the Broncos decided to double-cover All Pro special teamers Nate Ebner and Matthew Slater, leaving Jonathan Jones single blocked and Jacob Hollister uncovered.
“They can’t double everybody, they decide to in this case double Ebner right there, which is pretty unusual- you usually don’t see that player get double teamed like that. They get him, but the cost of that is Hollister coming down the field unblocked.”
Jones laid the hit on the returnman and Hollister recorded the muffed punt, so this ultimately worked in the Patriots favor and it a testament to the impressive depth on the New England special teams.
Belichick describes Rex Burkhead’s blocked punt by explaining how the Patriots showed a “return” look, like the Patriots were conceding a rush to the punter in favor of putting additional players back to block for the return.
“You usually don’t see a blocked punt off a six-man front,” Belichick said.
Well, the Patriots special teamers certainly got after the punter and Burkhead did a nice job blocking the kick.
Belichick also highlights the good blocks by Johnson Bademosi, James Develin, Dwayne Allen, Matthew Slater, Nate Ebner, and Trevor Reilly that spring Dion Lewis for his return touchdown, crediting Lewis for keeping his balance to evade the kicker and to stay in bounds after Broncos running back Devontae Booker tried to knock him out of bounds.
And finally, Belichick shows how Reilly lowered the boom on a Broncos’ returnman right before the half. You can watch the video here.