Monday, November 10, 2014

Pats' D has work cut out for them with Colts' TE squad


The New England Patriots know all about offensive potency from the tight end position. Heck, they wrote the book on it.

Teams utilizing multiple tight ends in their offensive game plan is nothing new for New England this season, as many teams have tried to expose the Patriots' secondary in the middle of the field and avoid their talented corners on the edges.

This week, however, coach Bill Belichick and the coaching staff will get a taste of their own medicine, as they'll be tasked with shutting down an Indianapolis Colts duo that's been tearing it up on the scoreboard.

Through nine games, Coby Fleener and and Dwayne Allen have combined for nearly 700 receiving yards, and the two have tallied 11 touchdowns. That's six more than their top two receivers -- T.Y. Hilton and Reggie Wayne -- have accumulated.

"Both Fleener and Allen have been tough matchups in the passing game,” Belichick said, via “There are times when they are out there together and there are times when it’s one or the other, but they both have done a good job of creating separation and making plays in the red area.”

The two have carried the offense inside the 20-yard line, with seven of their 11 TDs coming in the red zone.

And as Belichick noted, there's many times where defenses are forced to deal with both TEs (sound familiar?) at once, a task that can become extremely taxing when you throw in quarterback Andrew Luck's other strong weapons.

"They have a good mixture of one tight end, two tight ends and three tight ends in their offense," Belichick said. "Sometimes [it’s] different combinations, so you can’t always count on the same group of guys being out there.

"They definitely give you a lot of problems to go with their receivers and the quarterback and the running game with [Ahmad] Bradshaw and [Trent] Richardson so it will be a lot for us to deal with, a lot for us to handle."

The Pats have allowed an average of 63 passing yards per game to opposing tight ends this season, and they've allowed four touchdowns, one in each of their previous three games.

Follow Dan @DanBegnoche
Follow AFC East Daily @AFCEastDaily