A day after losing to Peyton Manning and the Broncos in the AFC Championship Game, Patriots coach Bill Belichick detailed exactly what Manning did to give New England’s defense fits.
Belichick said Manning’s ability to run the offense from the line of scrimmage is unmatched in football, and as a result it’s a major struggle for the defense to keep up.
“Manning does a great job,” he said. “Depending on how you’re playing him then he’s going to attack you based on what you’re doing. If you do certain things he’s going to do certain things. If you do other things he’s going to do other things. He’s going to run plays that are good plays against what you’re doing. Runs, passes, schemes, whatever. That’s what makes him a great, great, great quarterback. He’s very, very good at that. He does an excellent job of — particularly in the passing game but he did it in the running game yesterday too — of getting his team in a good play. That doesn’t happen every play, it’s not like he changes every play, I’m not saying that, but situationally, red area, third down, he sees a new look that he thinks he can take advantage of, there’s nobody better at that than he is.”
Belichick and Manning have been rivals for years, but they’re rivals with a lot of respect for each other. Manning called Belichick the best coach in NFL history last week, and now the best coach in history is admitting that Manning stayed a step ahead of his defense on Sunday.