〔護る〕protect ((from)); 〔弁護する〕speak for
protect oneself／((口)) save one's own skin
He stepped forward to protect his wife from [against] the drunk.
As he was favoring [being careful of] his injured leg, he could not do his best in the game.
The police believe she confessed to the crime only to cover up for her son.
No one stood [spoke] up for him.