New England Patriots: Three Up, Three Down Week 7 Edition

Greg M. Cooper-US PRESSWIRE

Three Up

Though he made a huge mistake toward the end of the game that almost cost the New England Patriots a win, Devin McCourty provided the Pats with an aspect they haven’t seen since 2010: a kick return touchdown (Brandon Tate). If he can get to, at least, the thirty yard line every kick return he fields, then he’ll be doing a significant job for the offense.

As the old saying goes: “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. The same goes for Tom Brady as his three usual targets Wes Welker, Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez came up big time this game. This is the first game this season where all three made significant contributions in the same game. Their work? 198 yards on 17 receptions. If this can happen every game and Brandon Lloyd decides to join the party, the offense will get better especially when the three are completely healthy. Well, at least hopefully.

There’s no better confidence booster than hitting two field-goals to win the game. After his rough outings at the beginning of the year including a missed game-winner against Arizona, it looks like Stephen Gostkowski is back on track. Both field-goals in the fourth quarter and overtime were both 40+ yarders. With the way the offense has been, it’s great to see him back. Close games won’t be so nerve wrecking now.

Three Down

It’s like a broken record. Opponent comes. Opponent passes. Opponent destroys the secondary. Rinse, lather, repeat. This time Mark Sanchez joined the party. On the season, Sanchez has a passer rating of 70.9. 73 for his career. Today he leaves Gillette Stadium with a rating of 90.3, 328 yards and a touchdown. To add fire to the flames, he complete 6 passes of 20 yards and more. They have Sam Bradford coming up next and it’s safe to assume he will have the same success or better. At the same time the defensive backs looked better, but they can’t allow passers to torch them every week.

Is Josh McDaniels doing more good for this team than bad? With a better offense, they haven’t been as sharp as they have in the last few seasons and the only change has been at the offensive coordinator position. When Brady is running this offense in the no-huddle things are going perfect, but at times Josh seems to get ahead of himself. This reunited relationship hasn’t gone exactly how everyone planned it, but somehow the team is still number one in offense and scoring.

Brandon Lloyd had one of those games. That game where you ask “what’s wrong”. Dropped passes. One catch the entire game. A few dropped passes one catches that were far less complex than some I’ve seen him catch from Brady. He missed a lot of opportunities on offense and didn’t provide the offense with his “stretching of the field” at all today. It’ll likely be more of a blip than a trend, but he was brought here to give the Pats an extra dimension on offense. Facing off against his former team, expect the best out of Lloyd next week.


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