Hall of Fame post...forget the 5 year wait.
That is why this board is so good.
You're killing me, man, your killing me.
I actually had the play broken down two days after the Super Bowl (the day after was tough). The problem I had was that the video I could find left some gaps as to defensive personnel and alignment. I assumed that Mayo was LLB and Spikes RLB (I was correct), but the numbers were tough to read, as was Ihedigbo as the left safety. Warren's alignment was the toughest read. I really could not tell if he was in a zero, one, or two technique. It was not until I watched an end zone video (which is no longer available) that I realized that he was in a two technique, directly over the guard. It was only until I watched the video that I was certain that the Patriots were aligned properly and had schemed well, given down, distance, and situation.
If you take a look at the overall video, you will see that the Patriots play a classic 4-2-5 cover two nickel defense. In no way can this set be utilized as a base defense, as not all gaps are covered. If the Giants run a simple counter trap, Bradshaw will run for, at worse, a six to eight yard gain. The Pats, at that point, given down, distance, and situation, were more than willing to give up that much yardage to a run play that would take time off the clock. Hence Spikes' positioning, where, if Diehl kicks out to seal off a run, he (Spikes), if not able to make a play on Bradshaw himself, can (hopefully) at least feed Bradshaw towards the middle of a roll up defense.
This all plays into Painter's post on the 4-2-5 base defense. I have a post upcoming on that issue that will simplify the matter for those that are not "Xs and Os" experts. So said, I will keep that out of this thread.