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How Patriots defense can beat the odds against Josh McDaniels in Las Vegas – Boston Herald

Hello, old friend.

The Patriots will match wits with former offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels on Sunday, his offense scheming against their top-10 defense. Both units fancy themselves as game plan-oriented, meaning they execute new wrinkles each week to stifle their opponent. So what can the Patriots do against a shape-shifting Raiders offense led by a coach who knows them so well?

For starters, show McDaniels something he hasn’t seen yet

The Patriots can confuse quarterback Derek Carr with new safe pressures, those that rush four while dropping one player off the line of scrimmage and blitzing a linebacker or safety in his place. The Pats have expanded their use of these “simulated pressures” this season, exploiting offenses that design protections to stop Matt Judon or Josh Uche, who then drop into zone coverage and foil those schemes.

Look for both players to be central figures in Bill Belichick’s plan to out-maneuver his old lieutenant Sunday. Beyond Judon and Uche’s impact, here’s how the Pats defense can pave the path to victory in Sin City.

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