Cardinals linebacker Washington could pose problems for Pats

Cardinals linebacker Washington could pose problems for Pats
September 14, 2012, 4:41 pm
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BOSTON -- Patriots coach Bill Belichick said, on Friday, that this week felt like a short week, considering the fact that they had much more time to prepare for their Week 1 opponent in the Tennessee Titans.

But it's not really a short week. It's just the first normal week. And in this first normal week, Belichick's been able to get a good look at Arizona's defense, and what makes them tick up front.

Prior to Friday's practice at Gillette Stadium, Belichick praised the way inside linebacker Daryl Washington's presence led the Cardinals' defense.

"He's fast, he covers a lot of ground, he makes plays sideline-to-sideline," said Belichick. "He's a big guy, athletic guy. Of course, they blitz him a lot. They blitz all their linebackers, but we have to deal with him in a lot of different ways.

"The front that he plays behind is very good, which, that's a problem. Dan Williams is a problem on the nose, and of course Darnell Dockett and Calais Campbell are big problems at end or tackle, if they play nickel or whatever front they happen to be in. I think the combination of all those players, they compliment each other so that if you really worry about Dockett and Williams and Campbell, then that frees a lot things up for Paris Lenon and Washington to run and make plays. And if you're too anxious to get them and block them and you go a little light on the down guys, Dockett and Williams, if you single them out, then that's a problem.

"So, they have a very good group," he added. "They're all productive. But Washington is fast, he covers a lot of ground. They count on that because they rush their outside linebackers a lot. They're rushing a lot of the time, so that means that the inside guys have to be able to run and cover ground and make up some of that space out there, which both Lenon and Washington, and Stewart Bradley, for that matter, all do a good job of."