Patriots-Chargers matchup of the day: Friday

Posted Oct. 22, 2010 @ 4:04 p.m.
Posted By Kevin Fishbain

Here's a matchup to watch in the Week Seven game between the Patriots and Chargers:

Patriots ORT Sebastian Vollmer vs. Chargers OLB Shaun Phillips

Phillips, the star of the Chargers' top-ranked defense, has six sacks this season, generally rushing against an opponent's right tackle.

Vollmer, who started eight games in his rookie season in 2009, has played well along a stout Patriots offensive line that has given up eight sacks in five games this season. However, he had trouble containing Dolphins OLB Cameron Wake in Week Four, and Phillips will be another big test.

For the Patriots' passing offense to keep up its success, the O-line needs to give QB Tom Brady time to throw. One of his interceptions against the Ravens came when a Baltimore defender hit him on a pass rush. Luckily, without a main deep threat, Brady will be making mostly short, quick passes, but Phillips has the speed and athleticism to be a nuisance in the backfield.