Monday, November 10, 2008
BIGGEST WIN OF THE SEASON... SO FAR
After the disappointing loss to Indy last week, which featured numerous mistakes, miscues, and misplays; the Patriots played one of their most solid games of the season. They didn't put up tons of points, but they moved the ball, dominated time of possession, won the battle for field position, and didn't make mistakes. On the other side of the ball, the defense didn't allow big plays, stopped the Bills 6 out of 11 times on 3rd down, helped win the battle for field position, came up with two vital sacks, and picked Edwards off twice.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis had his first career 100 yard game, rushing for 105 on 26 carries and a score. As a team the Pats rushed for 144 yards, all without Morris and Jordan. This success on the ground was why the Pats held the ball for 37:40.
Cassel's strung together a streak of solid games. He was 23 of 34 for 234 yards. He also rushed for 22 yards and a touchdown. He's not a Pro Bowler, or a fantasy QB, but he seems to have developed into a consistently solid and winning player.
Wes Welker can help make a QB look like that. He had 10 catches for 107 yards. He's the first player in NFL history with 6+ catches in all of the first 9 games of a season. He's on pace for 117 receptions, which would break the franchise record of 112 he set in '07.
The defense made the big plays when necessary. As mentioned above, they were solid on 3rd downs. Seymour's sack on the first drive of the game prevented a 3rd and 3 conversion. Ellis Hobbs' interception set up a field goal. The Bills were driving up the field when Deltha O'Neal grabbed his pick. Ty Warren's sack ended a Buffalo drive in Patriot territory, and also shoved the Bills out of field goal range.
The only mishap was the 84 yard kickoff return with less than 2 minutes left. Apart from that, the Bills didn't have anything. The Patriots had twice as many yards, nearly twice as much possession, and should have won 20-3.
Short turn around for the Jets Thursday night. If the Pats win that, they're in the AFC East driver's seat.
AP Photo/Michael Dwyer
AP Photo/Elise Amendola