“If a defensive lineman sacks a quarterback in the forest does he make a sound?”

The Patriots

That’s how I feel about the state of the defensive line of the New England Patriots. In the opener against KC they had some positives. Flowers had a good stat line of two sacks, six hits and eight pressures, but that was it. We knew coming into this season that the between the new faces and lack of star power manufacturing pass rush was the order of the day. The youthful energy and solid secondary would produce the finished product. So far, the returns are unimpressive. Other members of the front seven barely cracked the stat sheet, and with the loss of Hightower, the game against the Saints has taken an ominous tone.

The Saints

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – SEPTEMBER 11: Everson Griffen #97 of the Minnesota Vikings sacks quarterback Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints in the third quarter of the game on September 11, 2017 at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

But fear not Patriots Nation! If the state of our pass rushing sucks, then the offensive line of the Saints is downright deplorable! Heading out of training camp without LT Terron Armstead, they lost RT Zach Streif before two quarters of the 2017 season was over. This caused a normally explosive offense led by the prolific Drew Brees to fizzle and produce just 19 points. Including netting four field goals in the red zone.

Why it’s Important

This matchup is important for a multitude of reasons. Let the young guys get experience and confidence. Allow the Patriots defensive coaches to further gather information on their own personnel. Making sure that Drew Brees doesn’t get too comfortable and be able to pick apart the secondary. But, the biggest reason is that they need to prevent this game from becoming too big of a shootout. The offense still has kinks to work out and Brady has to be forced to trust other receivers on third down. And his Edelman and Amendola security blankets have been put in the wash and you have to get Tom used to the Hogan, and Cooks stuffy now, so it can pay off dividends in January.

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