New England Patriots Pass Rusher on Remarkable Hot Streak

The New England Patriots demolished the Arizona Cardinals on Monday Night Football after quarterback Kyler Murray went down with an injury, harassing backup quarterback Colt McCoy for six sacks in a 27-13 win. Edge rusher Josh Uche was particularly disruptive, and he has made a habit of it recently: the third-year edge rusher has 10 sacks in his last six games. Remarkably, Uche has only played 162 snaps over that span, under half of the Patriots' defensive plays. His incredible production has come in a rotational role; he hasn't even logged a start this season.

Uche's incredible run is a testament to the unpredictability and volatility of sacks as a statistic. Uche had only notched four sacks in the first 26 games of his career before this year's hot streak. His shocking totals aren't totally random, either; Pro Football Focus has given him an excellent 87.7 overall grade for his play this year, meaning he's winning consistently rather than simply getting lucky.

Uche joined the Patriots as their 60th overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft after four years at Michigan. He and fellow pass rusher Matthew Judon are the first teammates to both exceed 10.0 sacks this year; Judon leads the league with 14.5 sacks. All of a sudden, the Patriots may have the league's deadliest pass-rushing combo for the foreseeable future.
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