Source:bostonherald.com

Even though the New England Patriots don’t have a lot of big names on the defensive side of the ball, they have proven to be one of the best defenses in the NFL. Their ranking and the stats stack up with some of the best in the league, and Bill Belichick is a big part of that. The defense will be the key for New England as they will need to find a way to scheme for Julio Jones and Falcons’ two-headed running attack.

Honorable Mentions: Rob Ninkovich, Linebacker.

3) Malcolm Butler, Cornerback – After the moment that he had in the Super Bowl, he became a Pro Bowler and a guy that this Patriots defense relies on to make some big plays during the game. He will have his hands full with Falcons’ offense on Super Bowl Sunday, but he is more than capable of stepping up and making life tough for Atlanta’s wideouts.

Source:ftw.usatoday.com

2) Devin McCourty, Safety – Devin is one of the best safeties that NFL has to offer and the best player in this Patriots secondary. He is capable of sliding down to cornerback position as well as make plays on the ball as a safety. McCourty is one of the leaders of this New England’s defense as he has been Belichick’s starter for a couple of years now.

Source:bostonglobe.com

1) Dont’a Hightower, Linebacker – When you have a linebacker like Hightower, you know that you can rely on him to patrol the line of scrimmage and help out whenever his squad needs it. He can step up in the passing game, and he can stop the run as well. Falcons’ running backs and Patriots’ linebackers will be a good matchup and Hightower will be the guy to beat if you are on the Atlanta Falcons team.