Sunday, October 30, 2011

Game Day: Patriots Edition

Trick or treat. With Halloween looming, it's kind of scary to speculate what sort of evil game plan the Patriots might have concocted for the Steelers today.

A full two weeks after New England played its last game, the Patriots have the benefit of coming off a bye week in advance of their game today.

On Wednesday, Tom Brady said of his team's game plan, “We’ve got a lot installed at his point – more than we would normally have on a normal week and we practiced yesterday, so we’re ahead on our preparation."

How reassuring.

So far this season, the Boston Massachusetts New England Patriots are 5-1. Their only loss was a 34-31 last-second nail-biter at division rival Buffalo, after the Patriots had built a 21-0 lead. The Bills picked off four Tom Brady passes, two of which were bounce-off deflections off receivers' hands. Oh, and New England receiver Wes Welker had 217 yards receiving (217!) that day, and Brady passed for 387 yards.

The Patriots only other close call this year was their most recent game, Oct. 16 at home against Dallas, when they turned the ball over four times but rallied for a 20-16 last-second victory. The Cowboys played the Patriots tough that Sunday evening a full two weeks ago, intercepting Brady twice, sacking him three times and recovering two fumbles by the Patriots.

Brady still managed to pull out a win. Down 16-13 with 2:31 left in the game, Brady engineered an 80-yard drive by completing eight of nine passes for 78 yards, including the winning eight-yard touchdown pass to tight end Aaron Hernandez with 22 seconds on the clock. Bing-bang-boom. Brady made it look easy, as he usually does.

Dallas even had a bye week to prepare for the Patriots. Now, it's the Patriots who have had the bye week to prepare for the Steelers. Trick or treat.