Snaps: Talib steps right in

November, 19, 2012
11/19/12
7:15
AM ET
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – A look at the snaps played by Patriots defenders in the team’s 59-24 win over the Colts, while analyzing what it might mean (small margin for error):

S Devin McCourty – 78 of 78
CB Alfonzo Dennard – 72 of 78
S Steve Gregory – 70 of 78
LB Jerod Mayo – 67 of 78
DE Rob Ninkovich – 67 of 78
CB Aqib Talib – 67 of 78
DE Jermaine Cunningham – 65 of 78
DL Vince Wilfork – 60 of 78
CB Kyle Arrington – 49 of 78
LB Brandon Spikes – 56 of 78
LB Dont’a Hightower – 36 of 78
DL Kyle Love – 35 of 78
DE Trevor Scott – 32 of 78
DL Brandon Deaderick – 26 of 78
DL Ron Brace – 19 of 78
CB Marquice Cole – 19 of 78
DE Chandler Jones – 11 of 78
S Tavon Wilson – 11 of 78
LB Mike Rivera – 8 of 78
LB Tracy White – 8 of 78
LB Niko Koutouvides – 1 of 78
CB Derrick Martin – 1 of 78

(Penalties included.)

ANALYSIS: CB Aqib Talib (67 of 78 snaps) started on the left side and the coaching staff managed his snaps a few times in each half as he gets back into game shape after serving his four-game suspension. Talib wasn’t part of the goal-line package, and played solely in the nickel on one first-half drive. He also got a breather early in the second half for one series. Overall, Talib’s high snap total, after having been with the team for just one week, reflects how he’s viewed in the eyes of the coaching staff already. He’s the Patriots’ new No. 1 corner. … Devin McCourty went the entire way at safety and this might have been his best game at the position. His breakup of a long pass down the sideline, with Talib trailing, was a terrific play. … Alfonzo Dennard replaced Kyle Arrington at right corner on the second series, with Arrington mostly then relegated to slot duties.. … Rookie DE Chandler Jones never returned after going down with a right ankle injury, which accounted for his low total. … Jermaine Cunningham’s high count (65) was a result of him replacing Jones. … At linebacker, Brandon Spikes took most of the nickel reps in the first half, while Dont’a Hightower stepped in at times in the second half. ... Rookie safety Tavon Wilson was the dime back again.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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