As the week of preparation for Sunday goes on, one key factor is the production of the Buffalo Bills‘ linebackers. While the Patriots offensive attack goes everywhere on the field, they have the receivers that like to attack the middle of the field and pick up the yards to keep the drive going.
The Bills linebackers will have multiple responsibilities of not just getting to Tom Brady, but also playing coverage in both man-to-man and zone coverage. Tremaine Edmunds, Matt Milano and Lorenzo Alexander have extra pressure on themselves this week.
Head coach Sean McDermott, a defensive-minded coach likes to have his players adjust to any position instead of having them settle on one natural position. Alexander was a free agent signing under McDermott and both Edmunds and Milano were drafted under McDermott. All three can stop the rush and play in coverage, and very rarely cover one-on-one.
With the Patriots pass attack heavily loaded, even with an injury to Julian Edelman, Brady knows how to read a defense and utilize the weak spots. The Bills defense overall has to stop both the run and pass. The linebackers are going to have to adjust quickly to anything thrown at them by the Patriots.
While overall the Bills defensive unit will be a major factor, the linebackers now will not only have to potentially create pressure on Brady, they may have to help the secondary in blocking off any open passes.
Edmunds, Milano and Alexander are three physical players are versatile. A perfect fit in McDermott’s system. Will it show this Sunday?
-Brandon Ray is a Managing Editor for Full Press Coverage and covers the Buffalo Bills. Follow Brandon on Twitter at @brandon_ray79. Make sure to follow @FPC_Bills for Bills content.