Defensive snapshot: Sub rushers lag

October, 28, 2010
10/28/10
6:00
AM ET
A look at the snaps played by defenders in Sunday’s win over the Chargers, while highlighting some trends based on the results (small margin for error):

ILB Jerod Mayo -- 72 of 72
CB Devin McCourty -- 72 of 72
S Brandon Meriweather -- 72 of 72
CB Kyle Arrington -- 60 of 72
S James Sanders -- 60 of 72
ILB Gary Guyton -- 48 of 72
OLB/DE Jermaine Cunningham -- 40 of 72
DL Gerard Warren -- 35 of 72
DL Brandon Deaderick -- 35 of 72
DL Myron Pryor -- 35 of 72
OLB/DE Tully Banta-Cain -- 34 of 72
OLB/DE Shawn Crable -- 33 of 72
DL Vince Wilfork -- 33 of 72
S Sergio Brown -- 30 of 72
DL Mike Wright -- 29 of 72
OLB Rob Ninkovich -- 22 of 72
ILB Brandon Spikes -- 22 of 72
S Patrick Chung -- 21 of 72
ILB Dane Fletcher -- 18 of 72
CB Jonathan Wilhite -- 13 of 72
CB Darius Butler -- 9 of 72

(Penalties included. Totals add up to one extra snap because of a 12-men-on-the-field infraction.)

ANALYSIS: The Patriots played most of the fourth quarter in their sub defense and that’s where they ran into some trouble. They need some of their rushers in those packages to win more one-on-one battles and help end drives, as Tully Banta-Cain, Shawn Crable, Myron Pryor and Jermaine Cunningham played too many snaps in that role to not show up more with their rush. ... This was Brandon Meriweather’s first game playing all the snaps, which was the norm last year, and he was rewarded with a game-ball for a solid performance. ... Rookie Brandon Deaderick once again started at defensive end as he has passed Ron Brace (inactive) on the depth chart. ... Gary Guyton’s edge in playing time over Brandon Spikes reflected the usage of sub packages over the base 3-4, particularly in the second half. ... Safety Sergio Brown's 30-snap effort, which was highlighted by his solid tackle of Antonio Gates on the Chargers' final drive in the fourth quarter, was impressive considering he was on the practice squad as of Saturday. ... Darius Butler’s playing time came on the touchdown drive before the Chargers’ onside kick, as he gave Kyle Arrington a breather.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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