Author: @spot_bills

The History of the New England Patriots by Jersey Number #5-#10

NUMBER FIVE While Gostkowski and Vinatieri will go down as the two best kickers in Patriots history, Shayne Graham is a footnote of the 2010 season. When Gostkowski went down with an injury, the journeyman Graham stepped in admirably. He made all 14 of his field goal attempts in a Pats’ uniform. He is most well-known for being a Pro Bowl kicker for the Bengals. NUMBER SIX Ryan Allen just completed his fifth season as the Patriots punter. He was signed as an undrafted free agent in 2013 and beat out Zoltan Mesko for the role. He has earned...

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The History of the New England Patriots by Jersey Number #1-#4

NUMBER ONE Snowplow Game Let’s start by discussing the fourth leading scorer in Patriots history, John Smith. Smith is best known for a singular moment in 1982 famously known as “The Snowplow Game”. In the sixth game of the strike-shortened 1982 season, the desperate Patriots were deadlocked at zero in a snowstorm in Foxborough. Late in the fourth, Patriots coach Ron Meyer ordered snowplow operator Mark Henderson to clear a spot on the field specifically for Smith. He drilled the 33-yarder to give the Patriots the win. Ultimately, Miami defeated New England in the playoffs in sunny Florida, but...

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Win or Lose, Tom Brady is the GOAT

It was Week 6 of the 1983 season. My family’s Sunday tradition was to eat Grandma’s homemade pizza and watch football in her South Buffalo home. On this particular Sunday, the Buffalo Bills were playing at Miami to take on the Dolphins. The Bills had not won in Miami in my lifetime. However, the Dolphins were struggling offensively early that season, so they made a switch to a rookie quarterback on this day. We had a good feeling about this game. The Bills bolted out to a 14-0 first quarter lead. We were smiling, giggling, eating, relishing the moment...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXVII – LI

51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXVII 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXVIII 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXIX 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXX 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXI 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXII 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXIII 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXIV 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXV 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowls I – XXVI

51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl I 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl II 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl III 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl IV 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl V 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl VI 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl VII 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl VIII 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl IX 51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl LI

The Super Bowl is just 1 day away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 1 year ago to honor this not that significant occasion! Houston hosted Super Bowl LI on February 5, 2017. The game pitted the AFC champion New England Patriots against the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football Conference. Atlanta Falcons 1 Year Ago “Rise Up” was team motto for the 1016 Atlanta Falcons. That is exactly what they did. Led by the great coaching of former Seahawks assistant Dan Quinn and offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, the Falcons were fast and explosive. Quarterback Matt Ryan won...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLIX

The Super Bowl is just 3 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 3 years ago to honor this not that significant occasion! Glendale, Arizona hosted Super Bowl XLIX on February 1, 2015. The game pitted the AFC champion New England Patriots against the defending World Champion Seattle Seahawks of the National Football Conference. Seattle Seahawks 3 Years Ago The Seahawks started their season with a bang by defeating the Packers on opening night easily 36-16. Two weeks later, they beat Denver 26-20 in overtime. They finished the season by winning nine of out 10 to claim...

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Positional Group Comparisons for Super Bowl LII

Amid the pomp and circumstance of Super Bowl week, there is actually a game that will be played. Let’s allow everybody else to focus on the pageantry of the event. We are going to dive into a position by position evaluation ahead of the big game. Let’s start with on the offensive side of the ball. OFFENSE QUARTERBACK If there is one clear-cut advantage for either team in this game, it’s at the quarterback position. Tom Brady is the consummate professional. He will demonstrate great poise throughout the game regardless of the literal and figurative noise around him. Nick...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLVIII

The Super Bowl is just 4 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 4 years ago to honor this not that significant occasion! MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey hosted Super Bowl XLVIII on February 2, 2014. The game pitted the NFC champion Seattle Seahawks and their top-ranked defense against the Denver Broncos and their #1-ranked offense of the American Football Conference. It was the immovable object against the irresistible force! But, as we will read, the matchup turned one-sided early and the rout was on. Seattle Seahawks 4 Years Ago The Seahawks came off a...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl 50

The Super Bowl is just two days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from two years ago to honor this not-that-significant occasion! Santa Clara, California hosted Super Bowl 50 on February 7, 2016. The game pitted the NFC champion Carolina Panthers against the Denver Broncos of the American Football Conference. Carolina Panthers Two Years Ago The 2015 Panthers kept winning and winning and winning. Yes, there were other guys on Ron Rivera’s offense. But, this team started and ended with quarterback Cam Newton. The Panthers led the NFL in points scored. Their QB, in this, his fifth season...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLVII

The Super Bowl is just 5 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 5 years ago to honor this not that significant occasion! New Orleans hosted Super Bowl XLVII on February 3, 2013. The game pitted the NFC champion San Francisco 49ers against the Baltimore Ravens of the American Football Conference. San Francisco 49ers 5 Years Ago From 1981 to 1998, there was no more decorated franchise in the NFL than the San Francisco 49ers. But, they fell on hard times as they entered the 21st century. They bounced back in a big way with the hiring...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLVI

The Super Bowl is just 6 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 6 years ago to honor this not that significant occasion! Indianapolis hosted Super Bowl XLVI on February 5, 2012. The game pitted the NFC champion New York Giants against the New England Patriots of the American Football Conference. This, of course, was the rematch of probably the most intense of all the Super Bowls, Super Bowl XLII when the Giants prevented the Patriots from going undefeated. New York Giants 6 Years Ago The Giants did not have a particularly strong 2011 season, but they did...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLV

The Super Bowl is just 7 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 7 years ago to honor this not that significant occasion! Dallas hosted Super Bowl XLV on February 6, 2011. The game pitted the NFC champion Green Bay Packers against the Pittsburgh Steelers of the American Football Conference. Green Bay Packers 7 Years Ago The Packers underachieved during the regular season, then overachieved in the postseason to win the franchise’s fourth World Championship. They were led by breakout star quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers was in his third season as starter as he patiently waited for...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLIV

The Super Bowl is just 8 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 8 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion! South Florida hosted Super Bowl XLIV on February 7, 2010. The game pitted the NFC champion New Orleans Saints against the Indianapolis Colts of the American Football Conference. Peyton Manning was going up against his father Archie’s old team.  New Orleans Saints 8 Years Ago New Orleans had come up from the dregs of professional football. It took them a ridiculous thirty-four seasons to win a single playoff game. After a hurricane battered their city in...

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Ten Fun Super Bowl Facts to Get You Fired Up

When I hosted a sports talk radio program on my college radio station at Buffalo State College, my on air name was “Dr. Super Bowl” due to my intense love of Super Bowl history. For me, this is the most wonderful time of the year. You can have your shopping days until Christmas, I’ll take the two weeks leading up to the Super Bowl. I have lost many close friends and have driven several family members to tears of boredom dropping mad Super Bowl trivia on their unsuspecting souls. However, you the true sports fan will appreciate these mind-numbing...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLIII

The Super Bowl is just 9 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 9 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion! Tampa hosted Super Bowl XLIII on February 1, 2009. The game pitted the NFC champion Arizona Cardinals against the Pittsburgh Steelers of the American Football Conference. Arizona was brand new to this stage while Pittsburgh was going for an NFL record sixth Super Bowl championship! Arizona Cardinals 9 Years Ago Former Steelers’ assistant Ken Whisenhunt was the head coach of the overachieving Cardinals. They had a solid offense featuring veterans Kurt Warner at quarterback and Edgerrin...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLII

The Super Bowl is just 10 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 10 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion! Glendale, Arizona hosted Super Bowl XLII on February 3, 2008. The game pitted the NFC champion New York Giants against the New England Patriots of the American Football Conference. New England Patriots 10 Years Ago  Simply put, the 2007 Patriots are one of the most famous teams in NFL history. Their story starts at the end of 2006 when their stable of no-name wideouts was criticized for struggling in the AFC championship game. Thus, the Pats...

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The Least Deserving Pro Bowlers of 2017-18 Season

Every season when a Pro Bowl roster is announced, we get inundated with material about who got snubbed. Fan bases and game analysts go bonkers about how certain players were unfairly left out. Truthfully, if every alleged snub received an invitation to the Pro Bowl, there would be about one hundred players per roster. There has to be a line drawn somewhere. Therefore, for someone to have actually been snubbed, somebody made the team that did not deserve the honor. Here are the top ten who least deserved to be named 2017 Pro Bowlers. Top Five Least Deserving AFC...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XLI

The Super Bowl is just 11 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 11 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion! South Florida hosted Super Bowl XLI on February 4, 2007. The game pitted the NFC champion Chicago Bears against the Indianapolis Colts of the American Football Conference. Chicago Bears 11 Years Ago The 2006 Chicago Bears were coached by Lovie Smith. Smith in his third year completed his rebuild project with an outstanding 13-2 record in meaningful games. The offense was 2nd in points scored and 3rd in points allowed. Rookie Devin Hester returned three punts...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XL

The Super Bowl is just 12 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 12 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion! Detroit hosted Super Bowl XL on February 5, 2006. The game pitted the NFC champion Seattle Seahawks against the Pittsburgh Steelers of the American Football Conference.  Seattle Seahawks 12 Years Ago The Seahawks had reached a crossroads under head coach Mike Holmgren. Holmgren won the Super Bowl with Green Bay in 1996, but struggled to duplicate that success with the Hawks. In 2005, he put it altogether for one of the best seasons in franchise history....

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXIX

The Super Bowl is just 13 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 13 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion! Jacksonville hosted Super Bowl XXXIX on February 6, 2005. The game pitted the NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles against the defending World Champion New England Patriots. The Patriots looked to become the first time to repeat since the Dallas Cowboys 11 years earlier. New England Patriots 13 Years Ago The Patriots made a significant change on offense during the offseason adding the powerful running back Corey Dillon. In 2004, Dillon rushed for a career-high 1635 yards. Consequently,...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXVIII

The Super Bowl is just 14 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 14 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion! Houston hosted Super Bowl XXXVIII on February 1, 2004. The game pitted the NFC champion Carolina Panthers against the New England Patriots of the American Football Conference. The Panthers were in their ninth season of existence. Yet, they already had one exciting ride to the NFC championship, two head coaching changes and one rebuilding project. Carolina Panthers 14 Years Ago The 2003 Panthers coached by John Fox were in their second year of the aforementioned rapid...

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Bortles Is Definitely Not Trash at Quarterback

Blake Bortles does not have a great reputation as a starting quarterback in the NFL. For example, Houston Texans’ defensive end Jadeveon Clowney famously called Bortles “trash”. Tennessee Titans’ defensive tackle Jurrell Casey claimed that Bortles “chokes under pressure”. Even Seattle Seahawks’ safety Earl Thomas labeled Bortles as “subpar”. Does Bortles really deserve all this derision? Perhaps he did coming into the 2017 season. His career record was a dismal 11-34 as he threw 51 interceptions in just 45 starts. In fact, head coach Doug Marrone did not name Bortles as his starter until he won the competition over...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXVII

The Super Bowl is just 15 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 15 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion!  San Diego hosted Super Bowl XXXVII on January 26, 2003. The game pitted the NFC champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers against the Oakland Raiders of the American Football Conference. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 15 Years Ago After the famous “tuck rule” game, Jon Gruden was traded from the Raiders to the Buccaneers for a bunch of draft picks. The pieces were already in place for Tampa Bay to make a run at the title thanks to a fantastic...

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51 Super Bowls in 51 Days – Super Bowl XXXVI

The Super Bowl is just 16 days away. Let’s look at the Super Bowl from 16 years ago to honor this not-so-significant occasion! New Orleans hosted Super Bowl XXXVI on February 3, 2002. The game pitted the NFC Champion St. Louis Rams against the New England Patriots of the American Football Conference. The game was played less than five months after the horrendous terrorist attacks of September 11th. So, there was an air of patriotism on Super Bowl Sunday. Low and behold, a team named the Patriots made it to the Super Bowl and made American football history. St....

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