Pats scheme with their offense, too

Updated: January 23, 2004, 12:57 PM ET
By Scouts, Inc. | For ESPN Insider
Editor's note: Scouts, Inc., is back with a second look at Super Bowl XXXVIII, and they'll be here all next week with daily note and observations as the showdown nears.

  • First look: Pats will force Panthers to pass

    Charlie Weis
    Pats' offensive coordinator Charlie Weis is as much of a schemer as his boss.
    The Patriots are finding ways to neutralize their opponents' best pass rushers despite an offensive line that has been decimated by injuries and is adequate at best in pass protection.

    Against the Colts' Dwight Freeney, the Patriots used a lot of multiple-receiver sets and put a receiver or tight end in the tight end slot to Freeney's side. As he was releasing and getting into his route, the receiver or tight end would chip Freeney and knock him into LOT Matt Light. This is just another example of Belichick's attention to detail and ability to adjust his schemes to take away an opponent's strength.

    The Patriots' defense gets a lot of credit for using different alignments and schemes to keep opposing offenses off-balance. But their offense does many of the same things to opposing defenses, running a variety of formations with different personnel groupings.