Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Despite bad D, Patriots not giving up big runs

Only the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers have given up fewer rushes of 20 yards or more than the New England Patriots.

While the Patriots' pass defense is bad and New England is middle-of-the-back in yards-per-rush on defense, the Patriots have done a pretty good job at keeping running backs from getting to the second level, giving up only three rushes of 20 or more yards this season.

“New England does a nice job playing the run,” Jets coach Rex Ryan told the media Wednesday.

325-pound defensive tackle Vince Wilfork is the anchor of New England’s defensive line, which will face a Jets team that has reclaimed its running game the last few weeks.

“He is big,” Ryan said. “He’s a great player, and quite a talent. It starts with that big guy right there.”

Wilfork has 23 tackles so far this season in addition to a forced fumble, 1.5 sacks and two – yes, two – interceptions.

New England held the Jets to 3.9 yards a carry when the teams met earlier in the season.

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