The word "exotic" tends to come up a lot when discussing the defenses of the Super Bowl teams, but for two entirely different reasons.
The image of the New England Patriots is of mad-scientist Bill Belichick emerging from his film-room laboratory with elaborately crafted game plans week after week. In fact, though, the Patriots run a pretty basic, sound defense -- once the ball is snapped, that is. Before the snap? That's when the Patriots get exotic.
The Philadelphia Eagles, meanwhile, have gotten the reputation as a blitz-happy, risk-taking defense under coordinator Jim Johnson. Conventional wisdom suggests they tend to bring pressure from all angles at all times. But a closer look at the film reveals that the Eagles don't exactly throw the kitchen sink at opposing quarterbacks. They only make it look like they will.
Our scouts break down the philosophies and tendencies of the units that ultimately could be the stars of Super Bowl XXXIX: