This year a lot of the sports media coverage has focused on the quarterbacks.  It has been called the year of the quarterback.  In reality though, many of the great games this season have been won with defense.  The defense is what is driving a lot of teams and especially the teams that are still left in the playoffs.

Yes there have been some really amazing quarterback performances this season, but some of the biggest plays and the best last minute wins have been produced by the defense.  Defenses have made it more and more difficult this year for offenses to play their game.  Nothing was more evident than the Jets versus the Patriots.  The Jets went in with a whole new mix of defensive schemes and the Patriots just look confused.  They couldn’t figure out how to play against them.  The Jets have advanced as far as they have in the playoffs because of their defense.  Sanchez is serviceable, but the Jets defense wins games.

Likewise, the Steelers defense wins games.  Players like Polamalu make defenses have to specifically plan for them.  And a player like Polamalu who is like a tiger running here and there and everywhere, it makes it near to impossible to strategize where he will be at every moment of the game.  That leaves him open to make plays.  To hit the quarterback.  To go for the ball.  To make turnovers and change the game.

The old phrase defense wins championships is never more evident than this year in the NFL.  Defense wins games.  Defense changes the opposing teams game plan.  Defense is going to be the focal point the rest of the playoffs – not quarterbacks.  Unfortunately for the defense, it will still be the QB who gets most of the love when the team wins.

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