Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Patriots' acquisition of White a strategic one


Chris White's departure didn't make much of an impact on the Buffalo Bills less than a week ago, even though the linebacker was on the other side of the field donning a Detroit Lions uniform.

His impact may be much bigger this Sunday, however, now that he's a member of the New England Patriots.

White was claimed off waivers by New England this past weekend following his release from Detroit as they trimmed their roster. The 24-year-old spent two years in Buffalo after being drafted in the sixth round in 2011, tallying 17 total tackles along the way.

The Pats may not be looking to use White for his linebacking acumen though, as the former Bill's most useful characteristic could end up being his knowledge of Mike Pettine's defensive schematic.

As Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston noted Monday, White's football intelligence, coupled with the play calling that goes along with the middle linebacker position, could be a valued asset going into a typically unpredictable Week 1 game on the road. He could also end up being of use on special teams, with Reiss listing him as a potential contributor.

Coach Bill Belichick talked with reporters Monday about what he's seen from Pettine's defense thus far, drawing comparisons to what he's seen the past few years in New York.

"This looks a lot like the Jets defense, just different," Belichick said. "Different players and schematically it's similar to what we've seen from the Jets. This year, Buffalo looks like the Jets, schematically.

"I would imagine that whatever the Jets did, Buffalo is certainly capable of doing from a scheme standpoint, whether they've shown it or not. We have to be aware of some of those things. Again, I think that's part of the whole unknown of opening day."

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