Pats surest-tackling defense in NFL

June, 8, 2011
6/08/11
5:15
PM ET
Some of the struggles of the Patriots’ defense in 2010 have been well documented, specifically on third down and rushing the passer. But it wasn’t all bad, and Aaron Schatz of Football Outsiders passes along data today highlighting an area the Patriots’ ‘D’ was better than the rest – tackling.

The Patriots were the surest tackling team in the NFL, according to Schatz. Football Outsiders game-charters identified just 44 missed tackles on the season, the lowest total in the NFL.

Inside linebacker Jerod Mayo led the way, with just one missed tackle on the season.

“It’s tremendous,” Schatz said of Mayo. “Broken tackles can be somewhat subjective, and it’s possible our game-charters missed one or two, but it’s still awfully impressive. That’s pretty sure tackling.”

Schatz noted that no Patriots front-seven defender had more than four missed tackles, according to Football Outsiders game-charters.

The Patriots’ missed-tackle leaderboard (according to Football Outsiders):

S James Sanders – 7
S Patrick Chung -- 5
LB Gary Guyton – 4
S Brandon Meriwerather – 4
CB Kyle Arrington – 4

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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