Patriots-Redskins matchup of the day: Saturday

Posted Dec. 10, 2011 @ 3:04 p.m.
Posted By Kevin Fishbain

Here's a key matchup to watch in the Week 14 game between the Patriots and Redskins:

Patriots QB Tom Brady vs. Redskins CB DeAngelo Hall

One of the keys for Washington to pulling off an upset will be winning the turnover battle, which is not an easy task against a New England team that protects the ball very well.

After some uncharacteristic play early on, Tom Brady has been very accurate, having gone four games without throwing an interception. He threw 10 in the first eight games.

DeAngelo Hall is a playmaker, but he also takes his fair share of chances. He will be looking to turn the tide for the 'Skins by picking off Brady. Hall has 12 passes defensed and two interceptions this season. He had a six-passes-defensed, one-interception game two weeks ago in the win over Seattle.

While Hall will want to cover the opponent's top receiver, which in this case is Wes Welker, he may be better off on the outside covering Deion Branch, as PFW Redskins correspondent John Keim explained this week.

Hall's cover ability could eliminate a weapon for Brady, which is one way to throw off the Patriots' offense, but that would just open up another option for Brady to go to. It will take more than Hall simply being glued to a receiver to get an upset — he will need to make a big play, and Brady will have to avoid making an errant pass in Hall's direction.

Brady may treat Hall similarly to how he treats Jets CB Darrelle Revis, which is simply ignoring him and focusing on throwing to other targets covered by other defensive backs. But Hall's penchant to take gambles could also work in the Patriots' favor.