There was a time when a victory at Gillette Stadium for quarterback Tom Brady was almost guaranteed. That time has passed. Brady’s record at home before this season for regular season games was 101-16. So far this season, the Patriots have played at home 3 times – and lost twice. They lost their second home game of the season to quarterback Cam Newton and his Carolina Panthers doing what Brady normally does: running out the clock and putting his time in a position to win the game in the final seconds of the fourth quarter.
After the home loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on the national stage last week, the New England Patriots needed to come out of Week 2 with a convincing win. They completed that task with a win in New Orleans over the Saints, 36-20. Tom Brady looked like well, Tom Brady, throwing for over 400 yards and three touchdowns, completing 30 of 39 pass attempts, earning him an impressive 139.6 passer rating.
With Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola out on offense, and Dont’a Hightower out on defense, it was unclear how the team was going to perform. But faith in Bill Belichick and the rest of the coaching staff insured that the Patriots, even on the road, would bounce back from their loss the week before.
The offense really came to life, with three touchdowns in the first quarter, with passes to Rex Burkhead, Rob Gronkowski and Chris Hogan respectively. Brady even played referee, making a case for the crew to pick up the flag thrown for an illegal pick since the block was within one yard from the line of scrimmage limit. Mike Gillislee scored a fourth touchdown in the second quarter following fullback James Develin into the end zone, and with a 28 yard Stephen Gostkowski field goal, the Patriots had 30 points by halftime, allowing only 13 for Drew Brees and the Saints.
But as good as the offense was, there was a price – injuries. Rex Burkhead and Rob Gronkowski both left the game with rib and groin injuries respectively. Gronk’s injury was particularly concerning, as it looked at first like he might have reinjured the back which caused him to miss the end of the 2016 season and the Super Bowl.Continue reading “Patriots Right the Ship vs Saints”→
It was supposed to be a celebratory night. The New England Patriots had prepared a spectacle to unveil the brand new Super Bowl championship banner from their unlikely victory against the Atlanta Falcons this past February. They brought back standout players from each victory before, and the atmosphere was electric at Gillette Stadium.
The first game in a new football season is always so exciting, and a home opener after winning a Super Bowl just takes it to another level. The Patriots with Tom Brady at the helm are, after all, almost unbeatable at home. They had seemingly had a great offseason adding some offensive weapons to Brady’s arsenal, especially important with the season ending loss of Julian Edelman to a torn ACL in preseason. But Thursday night was like going to bed and having the best dream, to being woken up from a nightmare.