Boomer Esiason believes Bill Belichick and the Patriots need to keep up with the times.
For the first three quarters of the 2021 NFL season, Belichick’s defense in New England was looking like one of the best units in all of football. But as the Patriots started to come across more dynamic offenses, their defense proved to have many holes and weaknesses.
Esiason thinks addressing one of those issues should be on the forefront of Belichick’s mind this offseason.
“I need speed on defense,” Esiason said Monday on “The Greg Hill Show,” as transcribed by WEEI. “I need more speed on defense. Their linebackers are big, and they’re really good run-stuffers for the most part, Saturday night notwithstanding. But I also think when I see Bill’s team, I see a well put-together team, but I also see a team that lacks overall team speed. They do have big, lumbering, slow guys.
“This game is based on speed. If you watched any of the games over the weekend, the real superstars in this league are the guys who can really go after it. … These are the guys that we need. We need fast guys who can make plays, and they can make them suddenly. I don’t necessarily know that the Patriots have that on defense. They need more team speed on that side of the ball.”
The Patriots might lose two of their slower linebackers this offseason, as both Dont’a Hightower and Ja’Whaun Bentley are headed for free agency. If Belichick ultimately needs to replace both of them, he should heed Esiason’s advice.