Practice makes perfect, and the New England Patriots’ offense is benefiting from playing against newly signed cornerbacks Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner at training camp.
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady appeared on SiriusXM NFL Radio on Monday, and discussed how Revis and Browner have increased the level of competition.
“Those are great corners,” Brady said, via ESPN Boston’s Mike Reiss. “We’ve gone up against both of those guys and it’s been a real challenge at times.
“I’ve played against Darrelle for a lot of years, playing him two times a year with the Jets for a long time, so I know the kind of competitor he is. Having him in practice every day makes all of our guys better because they’re seeing the best, a guy that competes every play in the run game and pass game, on every route. He gets pissed off like I do when a ball gets caught on him. So it’s a nice little competition every day. You’re trying to get the best out of each other.”
The Patriots’ offense had good balance last season, finishing 10th in passing and ninth in rushing, but it lacked quality depth. The addition of free-agent receiver Brendan LaFell and the return of injured tight end Rob Gronkowski should help New England maintain its 27.8 points per game scoring average from last season (third-best in the league).
“We have all of the guys back from last year, with the addition of Brandon LaFell,” Brady said. “He’s done a great job coming in here and trying to understand how we do things. He has a lot of experience in the pros, so it’s nice for a quarterback not to have to talk to a fourth- or fifth-year player about every little detail, like sometimes you need to do with younger players.”
The Patriots haven’t had a defense this talented, at least not on paper, since the 2004 season. New England won the Super Bowl that year, and with an improved defense that will lessen the pressure on Brady and the offense to dominate each week, 2014 could finish on a similarly successful note.