Home > New England Patriots > Pats win behind Brady’s 514, face off with San Diego next week.

Pats win behind Brady’s 514, face off with San Diego next week.

Brady throws for 517 in week 1 win in Miami

 

Week 1 Post-Game Breakdown:

Week 1 is in the books, and the Patriots are off to a good start. New England took an important division game down in Miami, against a Dolphin team that is trying to make the jump past mediocrity. Brady had a historic night, throwing for 517 yards. It was a tough 1st half for New England, as they were held to just 14 points. But the Miami offense stuttered after scoring an opening drive touchdown. It was the 2nd half where the Pats started to pull away, and that was mainly due to the no huddle offense being run by Brady. Starting cornerback Vontae Davis missed most of the 2nd half due to cramping up, and starting cornerback Sean Smith was out later in the game due to cramping as well. Brady took advantage of these 2 being out, and tore apart the backup corners. It was a tightly contested game, but the Patriots were able to pull away in the end, winning 38-24.

While Brady did throw for 517 yards, how important is that really? Yes it’s an impressive stat, but does it really show us anything? The answer is quite obviously, no. The NFL is now a passing league, I don’t think anyone would argue that. Throwing for over 300 yards is not as rare as it used to be. Week 1 in the NFL, 15 quarterbacks threw for over 300 yards, with 4 of them throwing for over 400 yards. Tom Brady, Chad Henne, Cam Newton, and Drew Brees were over 400, while Ryan Fitzpatrick, Mark Sanchez, Kevin Kolb, Rex Grossman, Aaron Rodgers, Matthew Stafford, Tony Romo, Matt Ryan, Phillip Rivers, Jay Cutler, and Kyle Orton all threw for over 300 yards. These quarterbacks were 9-6 in their games, so not a big difference in the win column. When looking at the 4 quarterbacks over 400 yards, 3 of them lost. Look at the Pats-Dolphins game, it was only decided by 14 points. And if Miami was able to tie the game with a touchdown in the 3rd quarter, instead of settling for a field goal, things could have turned out differently. Also remember, that 99 of those 517 came on one play for Brady. Compare that to Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens, who flat-out dominated the Pittsburgh Steelers from the 1st play from scrimmage. Yet Flacco only threw for 215 yards. So all those yards Brady had mean nothing, if the team around him isn’t able to produce as well. If the Patriot defense was able to get a couple turnovers, then it would have changed the complexion of the game. What we also saw in that Ravens game was the effectiveness of Ray Rice. While the Patriots don’t have an elite running back the caliber of Rice, it just goes to show how important running the ball can be. The Pats like to use the old 49ers philosophy, of using short passes to open up the passing game. But Brady was throwing the ball down the field all night, and those 517 yards are a testament to that. For New England to be at its most effective, Brady will need to throw those short passes. Doing this will open up the deep ball much more, and it will chew up clock time. If Brady can keep the ball in his hands, and away from the opposition, you’ll see that defense come up with big stops more consistently, and the Patriots will start outscoring people by large margins.

Week 2 Preview:

New England has their home opener Sunday against the San Diego Chargers. San Diego comes in off a late win against the Minnesota Vikings. It was a poor performance by San Diego, considering they were down 17-7 at one point, while Viking quarterback Donavan McNabb threw for only 39 yards. How San Diego didn’t run away with this game amazes me. They ended up coming from behind to win 24-17. San Diego still has Phillip Rivers, Antonio Gates, and Vincent Jackson, and a tremendous defense, but they don’t scare me at all. I feel like San Diego is on the decline, and last year was just the beginning. They missed the playoffs, in a division they have owned for the past 7 years. Vincent Jackson is a good receiver, but there is no one around him. Antonio Gates is the best tight end in the game, but injuries last year kept him out at the end of the year. Ryan Matthews at running back has not lived up to the expectations of replacing L.T. The offense is hurting, and I don’t see the defense being able to bail them out this week. New England should handle San Diego week 2, and I see them winning 35-14.

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