Pats will need Vereen's best performance

Pats will need Vereen's best performance
January 18, 2014, 9:00 pm
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Seems running backs are all the rage in New England. That’s odd when Tom Brady is still operating at a high level, but the Pats run game has found a different level the last 3 games. LeGarrette Blount heading that. He is the flavor of the month. Steven Ridley has also been resurgent. But what in the wide world of sports happen to Shane Vereen, undeniably the Pats most explosive remaining offensive weapon? Just nine catches in the last four games.

Certainly some of Vereen’s lack of production has been a direct byproduct of the game plan and, in two of the last 3 games, Mother Nature. But it’s not as if the Pats have ignored him. They’re just not getting the same production. Part of that is the opposition realizing Vereen is too much for most LBs. Look at how Indy delay with him last weekend.

Check out this sequence. The moment Vereen releases into the flat, he’s got more athletic help headed his way in safety Antoine Bethea.




Vereen is unable to create separation, and with Bethea also using the sidelines as cover help, Brady will eventually throw this ball away, correctly I might add.



Later in the game, the Pats are going to try to get Vereen freed up down the field, expecting he’ll draw a LB.



 Instead, good coverage design by Indy, and Vereen once again is running into DB territory.