Sean McVay knows that slowing Tom Brady is “easier said than done”

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Rams coach Sean McVay presumably has respect for his elders. In nine days, he’ll set that respect aside when he presides over a potential physical pounding imposed against a man more than eight years older than him.

On McVay’s 33rd birthday, he addressed the task of facing a quarterback who turned 41 in August.

“Yeah, it’s a great challenge,” McVay said regarding his looming test against Tom Brady. “I mean, there’s a reason why he’s arguably one of the greatest of all time, because he does an excellent job of identifying whatever defensive structure you’re in, whether you want to pressure, whether you want to try to put pressure with a four-man rush and play loaded zone or some man principles behind it. He’s got such an ownership on being able to get the ball out of his hand in a timely manner and then he’s got guys that can separate.

“So it’s got to be a good mixture. We’ve got to identify the things that we want to be able to stop. Any time that you can try to move the quarterback off of his spot, whether that’s interior or edge pressure, just being able to force them to move where they’re not able to just set their feet and work in rhythm — certainly easier said than done, but that’s going to be a key to try to get him off of his rhythm, which not many people have success doing.”

McVay is absolutely right. The key to beating Brady comes from an ability to apply pressure to him early and often, hitting him hard and making him think about the next hit he may take. Ideally, that pressure will come up the middle, and the Rams are uniquely positioned to do it, with Aaron Donald among the best interior defensive linemen to ever play the game and with Ndamukong Suh finally earning his $14 million salary for the season.

It’s still easier said that done. As Chris Simms explained on Thursday’s PFT Live, the Patriots will deploy a power running game aimed at putting pass rushers on their heels early and wearing them down late, so that when obvious passing situations arise in the fourth quarter, Brady will be able to get rid of the ball before a worn-out Donald and/or Suh can chase him down.

22 responses to “Sean McVay knows that slowing Tom Brady is “easier said than done”

  1. Pressure him up the middle and cover the running backs. That’s what the Titans did and he was completely rattled because of it. A grand total of 10 points scored.

  2. The Patriots OL is playing as well as Ive ever seen them play in the Brady era. Shaq Mason might be one of the best RGs in football.

    Bring it. I DARE ya.

    🙂

  3. Its an absurdly simple offense you would think the NFL would have it figured out by now but what makes it so effective is the front 3 allow Brady to just stand there and play 7 on 7 and he knows exactly where to go with the ball. When #26 is in the game it’s a run or play action over the linebackers. When #28 is in the game it’s a pass or screen. 90% of passes are inside the numbers or to running backs in the flat. Flood the middle of the field, have guys ready in the flat, and force Brady to throw outside the numbers down the field. People have been saying that for weeks yet nobody does it. The only thing that gives me a bit of hope is the Rams basically used the exact same gameplan last week and for the most part did a great job against the Saints: Stop the run, take away Michael Thomas on in-breaking routes over the middle, defend running backs in the flat, and pressure up the middle.

    For the most part it’s the exact same gameplan.

  4. Force him to throw downfield and take away the 3 yard passes
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________

    That worked really well for the Chiefs on the last two TD drives. How many 3rd and longs did Brady convert again?

  5. Here’s the funny thing: there are very few things the Rams can do to slow down Brady, and Belichick knows them cold. Not only is he the best at taking away what you do best, but understanding what you’ll most likely try to do.

    I’d say the Rams should go study the Titans game this year but this Patriots team looks nothing like that one already. They shape-shift and adapt to their environment quicker than anyone.

    The teams they crush over the years (Steelers come to mind) are the ones who are the most stubborn and predictable. They’re too arrogant to change, and even though they’ve had much more talent on paper, that has been their undoing.

    The Pats adjust on the fly if they have to because they don’t care about who wins the stat sheet game unless it’s the column that counts wins or losses.

  6. All McVay and Kroenke need to do is call Goodelll to have the officials fix the game like they did in New Orleans. Oh, my bad, that’s already been determined the NFL wants LA to
    win the Super Bowl.

  7. “he’s arguably one of the greatest of all time”

    OK McVay, yeah, if we try hard enough, we might be able to make an argument that Brady could potentially be one of the top 20 QBs of all time…. give me a break buddy, just admit he’s the GOAT and move on

  8. kingbags says:
    January 25, 2019 at 9:12 am

    Its an absurdly simple offense you would think the NFL would have it figured out by now but what makes it so effective is the front 3 allow Brady to just stand there and play 7 on 7 and he knows exactly where to go with the ball. When #26 is in the game it’s a run or play action over the linebackers. When #28 is in the game it’s a pass or screen. 90% of passes are inside the numbers or to running backs in the flat. Flood the middle of the field, have guys ready in the flat, and force Brady to throw outside the numbers down the field. People have been saying that for weeks yet nobody does it. The only thing that gives me a bit of hope is the Rams basically used the exact same gameplan last week and for the most part did a great job against the Saints: Stop the run, take away Michael Thomas on in-breaking routes over the middle, defend running backs in the flat, and pressure up the middle.

    —-

    Have you considered giving Bilichick a call? This is great stuff!

  9. SWFLPC.INC says:
    January 25, 2019 at 9:03 am
    Brady and the Pats are going to school the Rams. The Saints would have been a better match.
    ______________________________________________________________________________

    But we’ll never know because Payton choked and didn’t run the ball to milk the clock and the sorry defense let the rams comeback from 13-0, 20-10 and 23-20. Doesn’t sound to me like they would have had a chance against the Pats……..

  10. slick50kc says:
    January 25, 2019 at 8:45 am

    It’s not as hard as the Chiefs made it look. Wade Phillips isn’t Bob freaking Sutton.

    8

    34

    ————–

    Rams play a lot of zone and Brady shreds zone. Rams MLBs and Safeties are not strong. Brady has always done well vs Wade Phillips when his team is healthy around him, along with an obvious OL play doing so well right now. The only different between Sutton and Phillips is mostly man vs zone, and the Rams Run D is not very good.

    Lastly, the Pats offense can roll more depth on offense than the Saints, with a superior O Line. Brees’s second best target, outside of Kamara out of the backfield (James White easily on Kamara’s level) was Smith, a rookie. Kirkwood wasn’t even healthy nor was Watson.

    Also, I’ve noticed the Rams going out of their way to proclaim BB and Brady as “ONE OF” the best of all time. Utter disrespect at this point.

    Love the bulletin board material! People that keep denying the fact BB and Brady are the GOATs are the ones who get real disappointed on Sundays.

  11. Do not underestimate how much the NFL wants a successful franchise in LA to capture the second biggest TV market in the country, plus what’s left in St Louis. We saw how far they were willing to go last week in New Orleans. They did it right in front of everyone. It’s no secret now, and the league’s hate for New England and the depths they have been willing to plumb are well know. Giving Philadelphia two free touchdowns in last years Super Bowl is just a recent example. John Parry was selected to be the Ref for the game for a reason. The Rams are 7-0 when he ref’s their games. The Patriots will need to play their best game ever to win.

  12. All real football fans should be pissed at the throwing of the NO / LA NFC Championship game.

    A blatant non-call of Pass Interference, something that is called more often than not for just heavily breathing on the receiver.

    I can’t help but think that game was rigged.

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