Originally posted on Patriots Extra  |  Last updated 7/1/13
    Ever since the departure of defensive playmakers like Rodney Harrison, Tedy Bruschi, Junior Seau, and Ty Law among others, the Patriots have struggled defensively over the years.  Although these player departures have a lot to do with these defensive woes, the team hasn't exactly had the cream of the crop to work with as far as defensive minds go.  In the last few years, the team has had defensive coordinators like Eric Mangini, Dean Pees, Corwin Brown, and currently, Matt Patricia.  Bill Belichick won't be around forever and that is why you have to capitalize on his remaining years.  To do this, you need to hire sufficent talent so that can win you a ring or two.  Lovie Smith should definitely be a part of the equation for the Patriots.  Smith started his career as as a linebackers coach for Tampa and later became defensive coordinator for the Rams, improving there defense considerably.   The year before he took over the team in 2000, the Rams allowed twenty nine points per game which was the worst in the league that year.  In 2001, the year he joined as Defensive Coordinator, they allowed 17 points per game, almost cutting their points allowed by half!  He even led the team to the super bowl that year, eventually losing to the Patriots, as all Patriots fans know.  As a member of the Bears head coaching staff, although their offense really struggled, their defense was among the leagues best and still is to this day.  The legacy he has created for himself is undeniable.  He has worked with the legendary Tony Dungy and Mike Martz, possessing knowledge and experience that would be a very valuable commodity for the Patriots.  If the Patriots really like Matt Patricia, they could bring in Smith to help him so that he could be a future defensive guru.  Bringing in a veteran coaching presence could be a major help to the Patriots defense, that in the right hands, could become an elite defense in 2013 and beyond.
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