During yesterday's game against the Kansas City Chiefs, linebacker Kyle Van Noy played an integral role on the New England Patriots defense. Not only did he play every single one of the team's 69 defensive snaps, Van Noy also carried the radio communication device in his helmet and served as the unit's on-field signal caller.
The Patriots had big plans for the 26-year old yesterday and it seems they have big plans for him in the future as well. According to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo, New England and Van Noy have agreed to a contract extension:
Patriots have agreed to a two-year extension with LB Kyle Van Noy, source says. Was set to be a free agent after the season.
Van Noy entered the NFL as a second-round draft pick by the Detroit Lions in 2014. But even though he was a versatile athlete with intriguing athletic skills, the Brigham Young product failed to find consistent success in Detroit and was put on the trade block during the 2016 season. One team to express interest in Van Noy were the Patriots, who ultimately traded a sixth round draft pick for the linebacker and a seventh round selection.
With the Patriots, Van Noy played a total of 10 games; seven during the regular season and three during the playoffs. Overall, he was on the field for a total of 352 defensive snaps (of 605; 58.2%) being utilized in a multitude of roles from edge rusher to an interior blitzer – one of the best on the NFL – to an off-the-line defender with a main focus on defending the pass.
As such, Van Noy registered 27 tackles to go along with 1.5 sacks, three quarterback hits and 15 hurries. While his pass rushing and occasional run defense were solid, his coverage abilities were inconsistent: Van Noy allowed 18 completions on 28 passes thrown his way for 156 yards and one touchdown. He did, however, also register an interception.
During yesterday's season opener, Van Noy played in the middle of New England's defense and finished with six tackles. Expect more of the same moving forward as his contract extension is a clear reflection of how the Patriots value the linebacker and how they see him as a big part of their future defensive plans beyond the length of his rookie contract (which would have expired after the season).