The key to the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots game is very clear. It comes down to points. No defense has successfully figured out how to slow the high-powered offense in Denver and the Patriots defense will be no different. The question is, can Tom Brady and his unproven receivers (lead the NFL in drops) put up enough points? With Brady likely having to throw more than usual this week, it’s a good game for Von Miller to finally make his mark on the season and record two, three or even four sacks.
The Patriots have struggled in pass protection this year – 28 sacks allowed — and after losing starting right tackle Sebastian Vollmer for the season in Week 9, they have given up five sacks in the two games. He has been replaced by Marcus Cannon, a third-year player out of Texas Christian University. At 35 will have difficulty keeping up with Miller’s lightning-quick first step.
Von played very well against the Pats last year in Foxboro, recording eight tackles, two sacks, three tackles for loss and a forced fumble. Even though Bill Belichick will likely focus his protection schemes around Miller, the Broncos talented and deep secondary will be able to lock up the Pats receivers in one-on-one coverage and allow the linebackers freedom to blitz.
With Brady likely throwing 40 to 50 times this weekend, this banged up offensive line will be under a lot of pressure for a lot of snaps. As the game wears on the sheer speed and tenacity of Miller wear down this offensive line and lead to sacks.
If Von can get to Brady early, and the Broncos are able to build a sizable lead, look for Miller to have a career day.
Written by John Spina. Follow him on Facebook or on Twitter @jsspina24.