The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update


January 8, 2014

Hamilton vs. Belichick will be one of Saturday's key matchups


"I think you know they're going to be well-prepared and well-versed in all the different disguises and the different things that they feel like they can do to try and create uncertainty for our offense presnap," Hamilton said. "It'll be a tremendous challenge. I coached in the same division for three years with Coach Belichick, and it was always truly a chess match."

The difference this time around is that Hamilton will be the man responsible for moving the pieces around the board — the most interesting of which could be wide receiver T.Y. Hilton.

The second-year star has lined up at all four receiver positions for the Colts — moving from the outside to the slot and back again — and Hamilton is certain to keep him in motion against the Patriots. Coming off a franchise playoff-record performance that included 13 catches for 224 yards and two touchdowns, he'll certainly be a focus of New England's defensive game plan.

But Belichick said there's danger in allowing Hilton to dominate too much of your thoughts.

"(Quarterback Andrew) Luck has done a good job of using all his receivers, using his backs and obviously tight end in the passing game," Belichick said. "He's done a good job of going to where the open guy is. I'm sure if he had his druthers, he'd get it to Hilton. But it's not always Hilton. Sometimes he's covered or they use him to attract, draw coverage somewhere else, and that opens up opportunities for others guys in the passing game and running game."

And so the chess match begins.

Does Belichick double Hilton or assign top-coverage cornerback Aqib Talib to shadow the speedster? How will Hamilton react and adjust to maximize the receiver's impact?

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