Can you believe it? Week 9 of the NFL season has come and gone (yes, Week 9!), and what a week it was. Whether you were locked in on the undefeated Rams going down to the Saints or you were anxiously waiting for Brady to prove yet again why he is and ALWAYS will be the GOAT, it was an action-packed week for sure. Let’s take a look at my week 9 takeaways from our match-up with the Green Bay Packers.
Photo via the New York Post
Last night, the hype around the number 12 was REAL and the world saw firsthand why the number 12 in Foxboro is indeed the greatest of all time. With Gronk and Sony Michel out, many wondered where the scoring would come from and how much damage our offense could do with virtually one running back. The questions were answered with an “all hands on deck” type of approach to this game which saw Cordarrelle Patterson become a goal-line beast, carrying 11 times for 67 yards and a touchdown (5.5 yards per carry average).
Not only did CP turn in a great performance, we saw Josh Gordon GO OFF for 130 yards and TD (prior to the game I predicted a 140 yard game with 2 TD’s for Flash) and saw James White continue to dominate defense’s from out of the backfield whether he was running the ball or catching passes from Brady and making plays with his sweet feet.
White not only caught passes from Brady in the game, but we also saw offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels go into his bag of tricks with a WR pass from Julian Edelman to James White for a 33 yard gain that was stopped just short of the goal line.
As a whole, the offense got contributions from everyone involved in the game plan and came out successful as time expired in this epic match-up. Tom Brady is 41 and still looks as poised, determined, and hungry to win as he ever has, which means the rest of the NFL is officially on notice (per usual). With Gronk and Michel due back soon, watch for this offense to become more lethal down the final stretch of the season.
The biggest takeaway for me last night which probably surprised most was the play of the defense and how well they caused havoc for Rodgers in the pocket. While the team may have recorded only 1 total sack, they also hit Rodgers 6 times and forced him out of the pocket often.
Tom Brady was vocal after the game about how well the defense played and gave credit where it was due, check out what he had to say after the game:
“The defense played spectacular, and 17 points against that offense is great,” said Brady. “You know, that’s a tough offense to defend. I mean, he could fit the ball into a lot of tight spots. They got off the field on third down, they were great rushing – I mean, it just looked like they had to work for every yard, and I know when they’re working for every yard, it’s a good night for our defense. So, it was a great team win.”
(article via Tom E. Curran)
Two players that personally stood out to me more than anyone else last night were Adrian Clayborn and Stephon Gilmore.
Clayborn for the first time this season seemed comfortable in the Pats defense. Clayborn registered 3 total tackles (2 solo), 0.5 sacks, 1.5 tackles for loss, and 2 QB hits. Hopefully, this is the kind of game that will get him locked in for the remainder of the season and remind fans why we signed him away from the Falcons in free agency.
The other player I need to mention here is Stephon Gilmore. Earlier this week Davante Adams came out and said that he does not think ANYONE can guard/cover him. Well, Gilmore did just that and posted a RIDICULOUS defensive stat line which included:
Thrown at 4 times
Allowed 2 completed passes totaling 15 yards
Did not allow a touchdown
Gilly 1 / Adams 0
Make no mistake about it, Stephon Gilmore as of now is the best all-around cornerback in the NFL! Look for the defense to step it up and carry this momentum through the rest of the season and hopefully a deep playoff/super bowl run.
With week 9 in the books, the Patriots defense appears to be coming into shape and should build a ton of momentum going into their week 10 match-up with the Tennessee Titans. As for the offense, expect the same big numbers from the Brady bunch with huge reinforcements coming in the form of Sony Michel and Rob Gronkowski (hopefully).
Additional notes: The Patriots have signed former Oakland Raider, Obi Melifonwu. Melifonwu is a former 2nd round pick out of UCONN who has great size as a safety (6’4) and also fantastic speed (ran a 4.40 / 40-yard dash at the combine). Obi should immediately add depth and athleticism to an already solid secondary.
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