The Patriots’ defense got exposed in Saturday’s 47-17 loss to the Bills, giving up touchdowns on each of Buffalo’s first seven possessions.
Unsurprisingly, it’s that side of the ball that Boomer Esiason says the Patriots need to prioritize this offseason. Making his weekly appearance on The Greg Hill Show, the CBS analyst and WFAN host said Bill Belichick needs faster defenders, first and foremost.
“I need speed on defense,” Esiason said. “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.”
Getting faster on defense should also help the Patriots address what Esiason called their “Josh Allen problem.” Allen has had two straight monster games against New England, throwing for a combined 622 yards, eight touchdowns and zero interceptions while also running for 130 yards. The only one of the teams’ three meetings this season in which he didn’t put up big numbers was the one played in monsoon-like conditions.
As Esiason pointed out, the Patriots are going to be stuck with the 25-year-old Allen in their division for years to come.
“Josh Allen has been like Superman against the New England Patriots,” Esiason said. “And by the way, it’s going to be a long decade, because as long as that kid is there and he continues to play the way that he’s been playing against the Patriots, this is going to be I think priority number one. How do we stop that guy when we see him? Because if we’re going to see him three times a year, two out of those three times he’s going to make it difficult on us.”
Listen to the full interview with Esiason below: