Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 1/8/13
Seattle_seahawks_v_7b9e
The bigger the game the better, at least that’s how Arian Foster has treated his first two trips to the postseason. Foster became the first player in NFL history to rush for more than 100 yards in each of his first three playoff games on Sunday, tearing up the Bengals for 140 rushing yards. He began the feat last postseason by running for 153 yards against Cincinnati, followed by another 132 against the Ravens. Now, the three-time Pro Bowler turns his attention to the Patriots, against whom he struggled earlier this season. During the Texans’ 42-14 blowout loss in Foxboro last month Foster managed just 45 yards on the ground, but it’s difficult to expect such a futile performance from him again this time around. Bill Belichick knows how talented Foster is out of the backfield and he sure isn’t giving the back’s Week 14 struggles any credence when preparing this week. “I don’t think anybody cares right now whether he gained 145 yards or 45 yards. It’s more about what we have to do as a defense to handle the plays that they run.” Belichick said of Foster during a conference call this week. “We’re definitely going to have to do a good job on him.” Even if Belichick isn’t worried about the statistics, they do show something of a trend how Foster’s play picks up in the postseason. During his three-game playoff career, Foster has carried the ball 83 times for 425 yards, which averages out to a little more than 5.1 yards per carry. He’s also caught 16 passes, including eight against the Bengals last week, and scored four touchdowns, which should at least concern the Patriots. Foster’s effectiveness with the ball in his hands isn’t all the Patriots need to worry about with the versatile back, though. His efficiency with the ball also sets up another key element to the Texans’ offense: the play-action pass. “There’s no question that he’s the key guy for Houston and their offense but his production also complements the other players as well and the other parts of the game,” Belichick said of Foster. “Not only the yards that he gains but how the running game controls the game for them, how it sets up their play-action passes, how it puts them in third-and-short situations.” Matt Schaub and the passing game have been a big beneficiary of Foster’s effectiveness this season. Schaub is very good on play-action reads and usually can find Andre Johnson, Kevin Walter or Owen Daniels open over the middle or down deep off of the run-fake. But his ability to open up the passing game through play fakes is heavily attributed to the amount of attention that Foster commands on the ground. There are very few running backs in the NFL that command as much attention as Foster and have as great of an impact in multiple facets of the game. Aside from Foster, Adrian Peterson and maybe Ray Rice, there really is no one else, and the Patriots are well aware of that reality. The Patriots may boast one of the league’s best rush defenses and managed to hold Foster in check earlier this season, but the playoffs are very different story. Foster isn’t your typical running back and this is by no means a typical moment. So, while Belichick prepares his defense to challenge the Texans’ attack on Sunday, you can be sure that Foster is atop that list. Have a question for Luke Hughes? Send it to him via Twitter at @LukeFHughes or send it here.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Ari Fleischer: Belichick 'can get away with' shutting down media

RG3 on team's expectatons: Not asking me to be Superman

Bills' Kromer issues suspension statement without apology

Report: Patriots restructure Rob Gronkowski's contract

Agent: Rory McIlroy not booked for PGA Championship practice

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Tom Brady, NFL to appear before judge on August 12

Report: Bradford, Eagles hope to sign short-term extension

Aaron Rodgers: TV networks have ‘too much access’

Adrian Beltre completes cycle, gets mad when assaulted

Gruden had to convince Dan Snyder to bench RG3

Jim Mora turns P. Diddy fight into recruiting pitch for UCLA

Gronk, Big Papi go 'country' in latest Dunkin Donuts video

Phillies showing signs of future success

Mortensen on false Deflategate report: Still figuring Twitter out

Sheldon Richardson is down, but is he out?

Would Phil Jackson have taken Towns or Okafor first overall?

Seven Big 12 Heisman candidates for 2015

Will Manziel be good enough to be Browns’ backup plan?

Cowboys exec on Dez fight: 'I do think it's a good thing'

Baseball season in New York has been better than expected

WATCH: Giants players fight during training camp

Lindsey Vonn shows support for Tiger Woods on Twitter

Report: Rousey to star in film based on her autobiography

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

MLB season in NY better than expected

Adrian Beltre gets mad when assaulted after HR

Lindsey Vonn shows support for Tiger

Notre Dame doesn't need a conference

Rex takes jabs at Jets' management

Sanchez: It's 'crazy' to call Chip racist

Ronda Rousey calls out Cyborg

Five most underrated players in the NFL

Five potential NFL salary cap casualties this preseason

Winners and losers of the 2015 MLB trade deadline

Pirates do Pirates at deadline: Neat little moves

Mets acquire Cespedes from Tigers

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker