Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com tweeted a statistic yesterday regarding Patriots DB Aqib Talib. Check it out:
espnstatsinfo in mailbag: Pre-Talib, Patriots gave up 62 pass plays of 20-plus yards (9 games). Post-Talib, it's 40 (8 games).
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) January 15, 2013
The Patriots traded for Talib on November 1st, and he made his Pats debut on November 18th against the Colts after completing his suspension. I don't need to tell you how much of an impact he's had because anybody can see it. The defense has been on fire lately. Now, we can't point at Talib and say this is all because of him, but it's safe to say that he should get some credit.
"Any time you can basically say, 'Hey, you got this guy and we are going to cover everybody else,' that is a good sign," said Vince Wilfork at yesterday's press conference.
That's some really high praise from the defensive captain. Mike Reiss also wrote an article about Talib that had a quote from Belichick as well.
"I like him; the team likes him," Belichick said. "He's a good guy to be around, and he works hard and competes well. ... He's certainly made us a better football team."
Every Patriot who has been asked about Talib has had only positive things to say about him. He's helped the Pats D cut back on the big plays. Come Sunday, we will see how he does against a Ravens offense that thrives on them. Flacco has one of the strongest arms of the league and is a big fan of just tossing the ball up there for his receivers to go get. Talib will have to play his best, but he has even said before that he is up for the challenge.