Panthers defense a tough nut to crack for the Patriots
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady knew what they were dealing with and agreed that they would be a tough nut to break.
"They've got every stat, every category — third down, red area, sacks, and they turn it over. They've got it all," he said. "They're one of the best defenses in the league. So we have to play really well."
Their track record has been going very well. They are 6-3 currently and have given the fewest points at 12.8. They also have allowed a nominal 283.3 yards a game and gave their best performance of this season on Sunday when they managed to limit the San Francisco 49ers to just nine points and 151 yards. They are now on a winning streak of five games.
And that is the tip of the iceberg. Their impregnable defence has allowed their opponents to complete only 33.9 of the attempts. And during the last 5 matches, the opponents have together scored only four touchdowns.
"Teams aren't really scoring on them. They're not doing much against them. Nine points last week from the Niners. That's not what we want. We hopefully can do a little better than that," said their offensive tackle Logan Mankins. "They haven't been giving up much of anything — the run, pass, points, they're good in the red zone, good on third down. They're good at everything right now."
Even though the Patriots have went up against some hard defences, there is no doubt that the Panthers defence will be something that will rank as one of the toughest they will face.
"We struggle at different times for different reasons and different things — third down, red area and things like that," quarterback Tom Brady said. "We're trying to make improvements in all those areas. This isn't a game where you can really not be good in those areas.”
Brady continued, saying that there would be no room for mistakes against the Panthers.
"You can't turn it over, you can't have negative plays, everything that we talk about, keys to winning the game,” he said. “They lead the league in time of possession, second in scoring defense. There's no shortcuts."