The New England Patriots play host to the Cleveland Browns today for their first December game of the season.
This game will have some interesting individual matchups to watch.
On the defensive side the best match is between Josh Gordon and Aqib Talib. Can Talib keep up with the fast, explosive playmaker Gordon? Can Gordon make plays against one of the best corners in the league? It will be a great matchup.
Aqib Talib will need to slow down Gordon because if he doesn’t the Pats defense is in for a long day. This matchup becomes important when think about Jordan Cameron, the tight end who can torch the Pats defense. One of these two needs to be taken away.
I will guess the Pats start out with Hightower or Spikes in coverage on him and when that doesn’t work they will move to Fletcher or Collins on Cameron. Dane Fletcher and Jamie Collins had a great game against the Denver Broncos because they both could cover. So it might be best if these two are used in coverage today against the tight end Cameron.
The Browns also have a shaky offensive line and should apply pressure on Jason Campbell. It is the best way to ensure a bad offensive performance by the Browns and cause turnovers. The Pats are best at getting pressure when they bring the heat so I expect them to be a blitz happy team today.
Offensively the Patriots will hopefully continue protecting Tom Brady well so he can work his game. Brady will start off not testing Joe Haden much and test the other side which could be good news for Danny Amendola or Kenbrell Thompkins. Also Brady will go to Gronkowski a lot because he is the best player on the offense behind Brady himself. Julian Edelman will face off against Joe Haden and maybe Brady avoids that direction all game but if Haden plays like he did against Steelers Brown then Brady will pick on him. Edelman has been hot as of late so this matchup is also a very interesting one.