Base vs. sub: Pats back in base

December, 16, 2011
12/16/11
6:00
AM ET
After two weeks in which they played little base defense against the Eagles and Colts, the Patriots returned to it last Sunday against the Redskins (46 of 75 snaps).

One would think the base D will be the primary package against the Broncos on Sunday, as Denver is committed to the running game and the base gives the Patriots a stronger presence at the line of scrimmage in a crowd-the-box situation.

Here is the Patriots' season outlook when comparing the base vs. sub defense:

Sub -- 582 of 927 (62.7 percent)
Base -- 319 of 927 (34.4 percent)
Short-yardage -- 26 of 927 (2.6 percent)

While the numbers highlight the importance of the team's extra defensive backs -- currently a mix of Nate Jones, Antwaun Molden, Julian Edelman or Matthew Slater -- they also show that the Patriots rely on their traditional front-seven more based on a specific matchup.

The game by game breakdown of base vs. sub:

Colts
Sub --
69 of 73
Short-yardage -- 3 of 73
Base -- 1 of 73

Eagles
Sub
-- 61 of 73
Base -- 11 of 73
Short-yardage -- 1 of 73

Chiefs
Base --
41 of 70
Sub -- 29 of 70
Short-yardage -- 0 of 70

Jets
Sub
-- 50 of 72
Base -- 22 of 72
Short-yardage -- 0 of 72

Giants
Sub --
35 of 72
Base -- 34 of 72
Short-yardage -- 3 of 72

Steelers
Sub --
62 of 80
Base -- 14 of 80
Short-yardage -- 4 of 80

Cowboys
Base
-- 40 of 74*
Sub -- 33 of 74
Short-yardage -- 1 of 74
* Includes one play with 12 men on the field

Jets
Base
-- 33 of 54
Sub -- 21 of 54
Short-yardage -- 0 of 54

Raiders
Base
-- 38 of70*
Sub -- 30 of 70
Short-yardage -- 2 of 70
* includes one play with 10 men on the field

Bills
Sub
-- 58 of 66
Base -- 2 of 66
Short-yardage -- 6 of 66

Chargers
Sub
-- 49 of 72
Base -- 22 of 72
Short-yardage -- 1 of 72

Dolphins
Sub
-- 59 of 76
Base -- 15 of 76
Short yardage -- 2 of 76

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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