Monday, October 06, 2008
BAY AREA BEATDOWN
It started ugly for Matt Cassell, who was intercepted on his second throw of the game. Then he did something everyone in New England has been waiting for him to do... launch a bomb for Randy Moss. Perfect pass, perfect catch, and it was a touchdown. He tried it later, with the opposite result (an INT). But he eventually settled into the game management kind of groove we saw in the Jets game.
The defense also took some time to click. 95 of San Francisco's 199 offensive yards came in the 1st quarter, and 14 of their 21 points. But in the last three frames, the Pats defense allowed a mere 104 yards, and only 7 points.
J.T. O'Sullivan (one of the Irishest names ever) was picked three times, and was consistently pressured. He was only sacked once, but frequently had to get rid of the ball early, or scramble for yardage. O'Sullivan's 23 rushing yards accounted for about a third of San Fran's total offense on the ground. Gore only ran for 54.
The Pats relied heavily on all four tailbacks. Sammy Morris was the powerback, and got 63 yards on 16 carries. Kevin Faulk had his first ever 2 TD game, and was outstanding as always. LaMont Jordan was solid, but sat out most of the game due to injury.
Laurence Maroney was disappointing. 10 carries, 26 yards. I don't know if his shoulder is bothering him, but he's bothering me. There was a 2nd and 3 play in the 3rd in which Maroney hopped out of bounds, 6 inches shy of the first down marker. Had he lowered his shoulder, he would have gotten the first. Maybe he's hurting, maybe he's not. But he's not as effective as he should be.
Cassell progressed nicely as the afternoon progressed. He started off looking scared, worried, and extremely vulnerable when pressured. He ended the day cool, confident, and comfortable when surrounded by pass-rushers. There were a few hiccups, but by and large it was a solid performance.
The Pats go down the coast to San Diego to face the 2-3 Chargers.
Horrible Announcing Moments:
Calling 2nd year DB Brandon Meriweather a rookie
The nickname "Slot Machine" for Wes Welker
"I want some bacon and eggs with all these pancakes"
AP Photo/Ben Margot
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu