I try not to look at any kind of stats until Week 4. It’s just too small a sample size and too easy to overreact, and that’s certainly the case this morning as I took a peak at my stats site of choice FootballOutsiders.com.
The Patriots defense? Ranked 32nd in overall defense, 30th against the pass and 32nd against the run. Nowhere to go but up, right!? I like Football Outsiders because it’s not based on one random analysts grades but by efficiency in the context of the situation. It gives us a good sense of how the team executed. And clearly the Patriots didn’t execute well at all.
By historical comparison, and again, this is just for shits and giggles at this point, here’s how those numbers stack up.
Of course things will get better, but it won’t exactly be handed to the Patriots, especially with a tough matchup against a great quarterback at his homefield this weekend. Here’s a few thoughts on some personnel switches that might help improve things and be better suited to handling Drew Brees and the Saints diverse attack.