Four big questions in the AFC East

February, 17, 2010
2/17/10
9:09
AM ET
How does the Buffalo Bills' roster mesh with their conversion to a 3-4 defense?

Can Mike Nolan do for the Miami Dolphins what he did for the Denver Broncos last year?

Can the New England Patriots reach accord with nose tackle Vince Wilfork?

Will the New York Jets' defense be as good in 2010?

Aaron Schatz of Football Outsiders tackles those major AFC East offseason questions in his latest ESPN Insider article. You must be a subscriber to read the entire piece, but here are some highlights:

  • For those who think Marcus Stroud can be Buffalo's nose tackle, keep in mind he's 6-foot-6. Schatz notes that might be too tall. But the defensive switch should help sophomore pass-rusher Aaron Maybin.
  • When considering Nolan's impact in Denver, remember he had the benefit of star cornerback Champ Bailey coming back from an injury. Bailey's presence alone was a lift.
  • In regard to Wilfork, Schatz provides some interesting statistics on how nose tackles have become an increasingly precious commodity in the past four years. Schatz also explains why it might be a good idea for the Patriots to trade Wilfork rather than keep him.
  • Schatz presents data to indicate the Jets' defense will experience a notable drop-off in 2010.

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AFC EAST SCOREBOARD

Sunday, 11/30
Monday, 12/1