FOXBORO -- It's Saturday. But for the Patriots, today is Friday. And just two days before Monday night's showdown against the Houston Texans, Bill Belichick did his best to try and break down the Texans' defense, and what their scheme will be at Gillette Stadium.
"Yeah, a lot of man coverage, a lot of pressure," said Belichick before Saturday's practice. "Its mostly all man coverage, really. In the end, even the zones are matched so, yes, theyre very disruptive up front. A little bit of secondary pressure, but not a lot. Its more linebacker pressure and man coverage. Thats what they do."
And that pressure comes often, according to the Patriots' coach, when asked if the Texans like to blitz a lot.
"Oh yeah, they do," said Belichick. "They bring five a lot and they bring six some, but they bring five quite a bit. J.J. Watt isnt always in the same place. He flips sides in their base defense depending on the formation. Then in their sub defense, they usually line him up to the offensive right. They run a lot of games with him so even though hes lined up in one spot when the ball is snapped, he can be rushing out here or out there, its not always straight ahead.
"They do a good job of running games with a four-man line," he added. "They also mix in games with their fifth rusher so your left guard, your left tackle, your center, really anybody can end up on anybody because of the multiple games that they run in passing situations. You can say, OK, were going to help him here, but after the ball is snapped, he might not even be there. There is plenty of that. And Antonio Smith is active in there and Connor Barwin and Whitney Mercilus now or Brooks Reed. Those guys are all pretty fast too. Its easy for them to run games and switch rush lane responsibilities because theyre fast enough that they can get there. Its not just taking a slow guy and looping him around. Those guys are fast enough to loop around and still get the quarterback. Its hard to say, This guy is going to double him, because hes not just a sitting duck."