FOXBORO (CBS) — So what do the Pats have to worry about right out of the gate? Today, let’s talk defense.
Tom Brady mentioned him and it was right on the money — Colts outside linebacker Robert Mathis is a huge problem. He had 19.5 sacks on the season and forced eight fumbles. Mathis is a game changer. Also in the postseason, his numbers stay strong — 16 playoff games, 5.5 sacks and five forced fumbles. Coach Belichick said the hardest part about going up against Mathis is that the Colts move him around. Well, the Pats have to do a great job of recognizing where No. 98 is.
Colts safety Antoine Bethea will also cause a problem for the Pats. In 12 postseason games, he has four interceptions. Bethea has a nose for the football and he’s seen enough of Tom Brady to feel he’s got a strong game plan.
Vontae Davis is a strong corner for the Colts but he might be playing hurt. He looked sluggish against the Chiefs this past weekend.
I feel like I have to mention Darius Butler. He was let go by the Pats and he’s found a home with the Colts.
Some good news: For years, the Pats had to see Dwight Freeney when playing Indy. He’s no longer with them. Always a terror coning off the edge, that will not be the case this time around. He’s been replaced by Ricky Jean-Francois. He’s a good player but he’s not Freeney.
Follow Levan Reid on Twitter @LevanReid.