If an N.F.L. team does not possess a quarterback of Tom Brady’s or Patrick Mahomes’s caliber, one of the best ways to remain competitive is to load up on pass rushers so its defense can sack opponents into submission. On the other hand, if a team is fortunate enough to employ an elite quarterback, its best chance to win the Super Bowl is to juice up its pass rush to neutralize his counterpart.
Viewed from that perspective, the N.F.L. is not so much a quarterback-driven league as a quarterback disruption league, with teams caught in an ever-escalating arms race to generate as much pass pressure as possible.