LONDON, ENGLAND (FootballStL) -- It's been true in sports for a long time and it's still true today. Defense wins championships. In the NFL, you can even get more specific with that if you'd like to.
Rushing the passer makes a defense, which we just mentioned wins championships. So, by the transitive property....you get the idea. Rushing the passer is quite important nowadays.
Think about it. In a backyard football game where four or five guys run out to catch a pass while the quarterback just sits back there all day waiting for someone to get open, doesn't someone always emerge? It's impossible to cover a guy for 10, 15 or 20 seconds.
It's the same logic in the NFL. I don't care if you've got Deion Sanders and Rod Woodson at cornerback. No one is going to be able to stay with these wide receivers for a long time. And if your defensive line isn't putting pressure on the quarterback and he's got all day to throw, that's a problem.
On the flip side if you've got a heck of a defensive line and they get after the QB, your secondary is protected. Anyone can guard a receiver for, say, two seconds. That's not a lot of time for them to go anywhere. If the quarterback is getting hit a couple seconds after the ball is snapped, that makes the life of a secondary much easier.
This brings us to Sunday's game against the Patriots in London. New England QB Tom Brady makes his living picking apart defenses...especially ones that are aggressive in trying to come after him. He's exceptional at reading blitzes and getting the ball out before anyone can hit him.
That's why the Rams defensive line, which has been terrific so far this season, needs to come to play. The Rams can't afford to send their linebackers, corners or safeties on blitzes regularly. Robert Quinn and Chris Long absolutely have to make Brady uncomfortable all by themselves.
Quinn is tied for third in the league right now with seven sacks while Long has four. This organization hasn't had two weapons like this in getting after the quarterback in a long time. Playing a 4-3 defense (where you have four down linemen and three linebackers) is difficult because finding good ends is nearly impossible.
As a defensive end in a 4-3 you've got to be big enough to take on 340 pound offensive tackles and stop the run but also be athletic enough to run around them and get to the quarterback before he gets the ball out of his hand.
The fact the Rams have found two guys (not just one, but two) who can do that is mighty impressive.
The Patriots will be prepared...there's no doubt about that. They'll know exactly what they want to do to stop Quinn and Long from getting to Brady. It's up to those two to beat whatever game plan New England throws at them.