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John Madden

Ask Farmer: Does a prevent defense really work?

Ask Farmer: Does a prevent defense really work?

Have a question about the NFL? Ask Times NFL writer Sam Farmer, and he will answer as many as he can online and in the Sunday editions of the newspaper throughout the season. Email questions to: sam.farmer@latimes.com.

I have been observing college and pro football for a long time. There have been lots of changes. One thing that has not changed is the frequent use of the “prevent” defense. My observation is that more times than not this defense prevents the team that deploys it from winning. Why is it still used?

Dick Terrill, Torrance

Farmer: I posed this question to Hall of Fame coach John Madden.

“The only...