Tag Archives: Stephen Gostkowski

12 Reasons The Patriots Lost Super Bowl XLVI

The Patriots are just about set to take on the NFC Champion Seahawks in their sixth Super Bowl appearance in the last 13 years. In their two most recent trips in 2007 and 2011, however, the Pats have not been able to come away victorious. In their most recent Super Bowl loss to the Giants, there were some pretty clear reasons as to why they were unable to win the game. We all remember the last-minute, game-winning touchdown drive orchestrated by Eli Manning, Ahmad Bradshaw’s accidental touchdown and the last-second Hail Mary attempt falling incomplete. Chances are, however, most people have forgotten about some of the other reasons the Pats came out on the wrong end of the score, but not to worry. Here are the top-12 reasons the Patriots lost Super Bowl XLVI.

Tom Brady walks off the field in Indianapolis following the Super Bowl XLVI defeat.

Tom Brady walks off the field in Indianapolis following the Super Bowl XLVI defeat.

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Brady Picked In End Zone As Dolphins Hang On To Top Pats

Michael Thomas of the Dolphins celebrates his game-ending pick with the rest of the Miami defense.

The Patriots have been nothing shirt of dominant in the moth of December for the past few seasons. The Miami sunshine must have confused them.

With a chance to take advantage of Denver’s Thursday night loss at the hands of the Chargers, the Pats could not pull off their fourth straight gut-check win. Trailing the Dolphins, 24-20, Tom Brady was picked off by on a fourth-down play in the end zone by Michael Thomas, fresh of the 49ers‘ practice squad, as time expired.

The Miami win kept their hopes for the AFC East alive as they improved to 8-6 and the Patriots lost for the first time since the Monday Night game against the Panthers. It was their first win against New England in eight games and their third straight overall.

“We didn’t do a good job in the red area,” Brady said after the game.And didn’t do a good job finishing drives. We came up on the short end of the stick. It wasn’t a good day. Just couldn’t make enough plays.”

Brady did throw two touchdowns to Michael Hoomanawanui and Julian Edelman, but his only mistake of the day at best prolonged New England’s 11th division title in the last 14 seasons.
Miami’s Ryan Tannehill threw the game-winning touchdown pass – his third of the day – to Marcus Thigpen with 1:15 remaining in the fourth, leaving just enough time for Brady to get within striking distance thanks to a couple of big conversions.
The Pats went into the half up 10-0 thanks to a botched Miami field goal attempt, but quickly saw their halftime lead turn to 10-7 to start the third and then 17-10 after a field goal and another TD pass.

They would come back to score the next 10, however, with a Stephen Gostkowki field goal from 23 yards out and a 24-yard pass from Brady to  Edelman with 4:07 left in the fourth quarter. Gostkowski had missed his first attempt earlier in the game.

Again, however, the Pats’ makeshift D gave up the go-ahead score despite Miami facing a 3rd-and-16 to begin the drive. Tanehill would complete two straight and pick up the first down as the clock kept rolling. After mostly short and intermediate throws, he then connected with Rishard Matthews for a 24-yard gain to the New England 14 and then hit  Thigpen on the next play to put the ‘Phins up, 24-20, with 1:15 to go. Gostkowski’s kickoff had gone out of bounds, which set Miami up at their own 40.

Then, facing a 4th-and-8 at his own 33, Brady threw a pea to Danny Amendola for one of his 10 catches, to pick up 12 yards with 52 seconds left. On the next series, Brady connected with Edelman for one of his 13 catches to pick up 16 on 3rd-and-10 now with 27 to play. And the Pats were in the red zone.

A Dolphins’ offsides set the Pats up at the 14, but Brady tried three times to get in the end zone and failed. The first was to Edelman, the second to Hoomanawanui and then his fourth-down pass intended for Austin Collie was intercepted by Thomas in the end zone to end the game.

“I knew being the new guy that Tom Brady would come after me,” Thomas said. “He’s a great quarterback, and he’s going to exploit any weaknesses.”

Danny Amendola's potential game-winning catch slipped through his finger tips.

Danny Amendola’s potential game-winning catch slipped through his finger tips.

Brady finished the day 34-of-55 for 364 yards – his fourth straight 300-yard game. Edelman caught 13 for 139 yards and a score while Amendola snagged 10 for 131 of his own, but couldn’t haul in the game-winner in the end zone despite having both hands on the ball on the final drive. Both were huge in the comeback bid that fell just short while Shane Vereen mustered only 21 total yards on five touches for the day. Neither team ran for 100 yards.

The loss dropped the Patriots to 3-4 on the road this season while they are a perfect 7-0 at home. Fourteen fourth-quarter points allowed had a lot to do with that.

“We were short in every area [today],” Bill Belichick said, noting that special teams play had a lot to do with it.

Miami coach, Joe Philbin, said after the game that he might go home and jump in his pool for the second time since moving to Florida, referring to a celebratory swim.

The Pats will host the 7-6 defending champion Ravens in the late game next Sunday while the Dolphins look to bolster their playoff chances against the Bills at Ralph Wilson.


Follow me on Twitter @RealAndyLarmand.

Patriots Score Twice In Final Two Minutes For Third Straight Comeback Victory

Tom Brady celebrates taking the lead late in the fourth quarter with Ryan Wendell.


For the third straight week, the Patriots offense got off to a slow start, and for the third straight week, led by Tom Brady, they found a way to dig themselves out of the hole. Trailing 26-14 with two minutes left after Cleveland made it a two-possession game, Brady led the team to not one but two touchdowns to give them the improbable victory, 27-26.

Unlike the previous two times, however, it took two touchdowns in the final two minutes to earn the victory. Not to mention recovering an onside kick and keeping the Browns and kicker Billy Cundiff just far enough away so that his 58-yard attempt came up just short as time expired.

“That was awesome,” said Brady after the game. That was awesome. What a game. I’m just proud of the guys. We fought through a lot of adversity. A lot of mental toughness. We grinded it out, so it was pretty sweet.”

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Patriots Rally in 2nd Half, Edge Texans 34-31

Every game this season that seemed like it should have been a cake walk for the Patriots have been nail biters. Sunday was no exception as the Patriots squeaked out a 34-31 win over the lowly 2-10 Houston Texans.

LeGarrette Blount

Last season, the Patriots not only embarrassed the Texans on a Monday Night matchup, but also embarrassed them in the playoffs to end the season. That Texans team was a lot different from this year’s Texans team. Last year, the Texans were supposed to be good, and were good, except for when they played the Patriots. This year they’ve been horrible, but were almost able to beat the Patriots.

Houston jumped out to a 10-lead in the first quarter. With the score 7-0, Tom Brady threw a pass intended for Rob Gronkowski, but was intercepted by Jonathan Joseph at the New England 31. The Patriots defense was able to hold the Casey Keenum led offense to just a field goal on that drive.

On the ensuing Patriots drive, Tom Brady found Gronkowski in the end zone for a 23 yard field goal, that cut the deficit to 3. With the score the same in the 2nd quarter, Patriots Kicker, Stephen Gostkowski misses a 55 yard field goal, which gave Houston great field position to start their next drive at. That drive ended with a Ben Tate touchdown, and the Texans went to halftime with a 10 point lead.

The Patriots are strangers to trailing at halftime, as they were down by 24 points last week, before rallying and defeated Peyton Manning and the Broncos. In the 2nd half, the Patriots came out just as they had a week before. They drove down the field in just 2 minutes and 19 seconds, and James Devlin, who had his 1st career carry in the 1st quarter, recorded his 1st career touchdown to cut the Texans lead to 17-14.

After the defense forced the Texans to a 3 and out, the offense came through again, as Brady once again quickly got down field, and hooked up with Shane Vereen for a touchdown that put the Pats up by 4. That lead however would not be enough.

After a 6 minute drive, Keenum scored a touchdown a quarterback keep play from 5 yards out, which once again put the Texans on top by 3 points. But this game was being played against the Patriots, and there is no keeping the Patriots down. The Pats once again answered and took the lead on a Lagarrette Blount touchdown run. Blount had the majority of the carries on the day as usual starter, Stevan Ridley was inactive, due to his high amount of turnovers this season. Ridley watched the Patriots from the bench while holding a football all game long.

Blount had 12 carries for 44 yards and 1 touchdown, as Shane Vereen had 10 carries and 38 yards with on receiving touchdown.

Keenum and the Texans took the lead back in just over a minute. They got 80 yards on 3 plays to take the lead 31-28. The biggest play on the drive was a 65 yard pass to DeAndre Hopkins, that beat Devin McCourty.

The Patriots tied the game on 53 yard field goal by Gostkowski, and then were able to stop the Texans, and Gostkowski made another 53 yard field goal that gave the Patriots the lead for good.

The Texans failed to convert on a 4th and 13, with 2 minutes left, and had just one timeout left. Despite only 1 timeout, they were still able to stop the Patriots and forced them to punt. Keenum had two chances to pull off a miracle, but he was unsuccessful, and the Patriots left Houston with a 9-3 record.

Tom Brady threw for 371 yards and 2 touchdowns as well as the one interception he threw in the 1st quarter. Julian Edelman had a huge game, and looked like (I hate to say his name) Wes Welker. Edelman was stepping up all game and making difficult catches look easy, as he had 9 receptions for 101 yards, and Gronk had 127 yards on 10 catches.

The Patriots will now play the Cleveland Browns next Sunday, and despite the 3-8 record for Cleveland, the game won’t be easy for New England.

Patriots Stun Broncos With Biggest Comeback In Team History

Julian Edelman leaps into the end zone to give the Patriots the lead in the fourth quarter.

It was fitting that the coldest regular-season game played in Foxboro in the last 20 years (22 degrees) was also (one of) the best regular-season games played in Foxboro in the last 20 years. For the 10th time in 14 career meetings with Peyton Manning, Tom Brady got the best of the other best quarterback of our era after Denver dominated the home team in the first half, but just the first half, scoring the first 24 points of the game and forcing three turnovers.

It was the final turnover, however, that was the biggest one. Denver special teams player, Tony Carter, allowed the ball to hit him after Wes Welker, back to return the kick with three minutes remaining in overtime, may have made the “get away” call just a little too late. New England recovered and three plays later, Stephen Gostkowski capped the biggest comeback in Patriots’ history with a 31-yard field goal to beat the Denver Broncos, 34-31.

If you’re going to turn the ball over three times in a game, you might as well get them all out of your system in the first half.

“The weather conditions get a little tough [and] things can turn quickly,” said  Brady, who finished 34-of-50 for 344 yards and three touchdowns, of the second-half turnaround.

Despite only one touchdown pass from Manning in the first half, Denver jumped out to a quick 14-0 lead thanks to Patriots’ fumbles on each of their first three possessions. Von Miller returned the first 60 yards for a touchdown 4:53 into the game and Kowshon Moreno plowed in from two yards out just over a minute later following a Brady fumble that was returned to the New England 10. They were two of his 224 rushing yards on the night, easily a career-high.

Then, LeGarrette Blount put the ball on the ground, leading to a field goal and quick 17-0 lead before Manning threw his first touchdown pass to in the second quarter to make it 24-0 all before the break.

It seemed like it would be a laugher after the first 30 minutes, but Brady drove the Pats down the field after receiving the second-half kickoff and after just eight plays, hit Julian Edelman from five yards out to make it 24-7. Then, after five straight draw plays to begin their first drive of the half, Moreno put the ball on the ground as Dane Fletcher jarred it out and Brandon Spikes got the recovery. Six plays after that, Brandon Bolden ran it in from a yard out and just like that it was 24-14. By the end of the third, it was 24-21 as Brady hit Rob Gronkowski on 3rd-and-6 to bring the Pats within three.

It kept going after that. Manning threw just his sixth interception of the year into the arms of Logan Ryan and three plays later, Brady hit Edelman for their second scoring connection of the night to cap the 30-yard, 78-second drive and somehow give the Patriots the 28-24 lead.

After Wesley Woodyard dropped a tipped interception that he had both his hands on and a would-be 2nd-and-20 was negated by an illegal hands to the face penalty, Gostkowski hit his 20th consecutive kick to give the Pats the seven-point lead with just over seven and a half remaining.

When it looked like it could be over on the next Denver drive, Aqib Talib, who had completely shut down Demaryius Thomas all night, was called for holding and negated his own interception, giving the Broncos some hope. Then Manning started converting third downs and Thomas started catching passes. And the Patriots started committing penalties. With 3:06 left, Manning hit Thomas from 11 yards out to tie the score at 31 after Denver picked up two first downs from penalties on the drive, including a pass interference call on Rob Ninkovich on 3rd-and-7 in the red zone. Brady would then go three and out and Ryan Allen was called to punt the ball to Welker with 1:45 remaining.

Denver took over at the 33-yard line, going into the wind. Then, Manning went three and out with a near sack from Andre Carter, a pass break-up from Kyle Arrington and an incomplete floater to give Brady one more chance from his own 11-yard line with 28 seconds left and two timeouts. Just a screen and a draw would take Brady and Manning to overtime, though.

After winning the coin toss, the Pats elected to forego possession and select the side of the field with the wind at their back, giving Manning and the Broncos the ball first. Both teams would trade possessions with New England’s ending on a long incomplete sideline pass on 3rd-and-4 after everyone thought Kenbrell Thompkins was interfered with on the previous throw, forcing the Pats to burn their first timeout to cool off.

When it seemed the Pats would be playing for a tie at best, the only thing that hadn’t happened in the game happened. Nate Ebner recovered the loose ball at the 18 and with 6’8’’ backup quarterback Brock Osweiler in the game to try to get the block, Gostkowski sent those who stuck it out home happy with a little bit of history to take with them.

Special teams players pile on Nate Ebner after he recovered the botched punt to set up the winning field goal.

Special teams players pile on Nate Ebner after he recovered the botched punt to set up the winning field goal.

“We just calmed down and each played one play at a time,” said Edelman, who finished with nine catches for 110 yards and the two huge touchdowns. “We didn’t turn the ball over in the second half.”

For Brady, it was his 33rd game-winning drive in the fourth quarter or overtime and this was certainly one of the bigger ones as New England now controls its own destiny in its hunt for a first-round bye in the playoffs.

Denver turned the ball over four times in the second half while the Patriots played mistake-free and scored on all five of their possessions, including 21 points in the third quarter, 10 in the fourth and, of course, the three in overtime. Manning finished with just 150 passing yards while Brady put up 344. It was the Pats’ ability to score touchdowns and not having to settle for field goals that gave them a chance to get back in the game.

While they did fumble the ball six times, they only losy three. Welker finished his return to Foxboro with just four catches for 41 yards and, of course, it wouldn’t be a Welker outing at Gillette without a big drop.

“We had a lot of guys step up here,” said Bill Belichick after the game. “You could rattle off 35-40 guys.”

After the improbable victory, New England will move on to the disappointing Texans (2-9) while the Broncos will take on the Chiefs for the second time in three weeks.

Follow me on Twitter @RealAndyLarmand.

Patriots Crush Steelers At Home With 55-Point Performance

Stevan Ridley powered into the end zone twice as the Pats' offense bursted out for 55 points.

On a chilly day turned night at Gillette Stadium, when it looked like the 2-5 Steelers would do enough to beat themselves, Tom Brady made sure he did more than was necessary while making a bit of history in the process.

Not to be outdone by the Red Sox, who were welcomed to the turf pregame with their new hardware, the Patriots put forth their best offensive effort of the year (almost twice as best as their previous-high for points) and beat the scuffling Steelers, 55-31, behind four touchdown passes from Brady. In so doing, they improved to 5-0 at home in 2013
“I’m not sure exactly how it all happened today,” said Bill Belichick after the game. “Maybe we got inspiration from the Red Sox.”
A Ben Roethlisberger interception set the Pats up with decent field position at the Pittsburgh 34 on their third drive of the game after they were unable to turn a Roethlisberger fumble into points on their first drive. After a one-yard Brandon Bolden touchdown run was nullified (by a Pittsburgh penalty), Stevan Ridley was stopped on 4th & goal. But, for the second straight possession, the Steelers would turn it over as Roethlisberger was picked off by Devin McCourty. One play later, Brady hit Danny Amendola for his first touchdown as a Patriot and his longest reception, a 34-yarder, for the 7-0 lead with under five to go in the first.

Before long, it was 14-0. After using his tight ends twice on the drive that started from their own 33, Brady hit Rob Gronkowski for his second touchdown throw of the afternoon and one of Gronk’s career-high nine catches. His first multi-touchdown performance since Week 4 gave the Pats the 14-0 lead with 10 to go in the half.

Looking to answer, a big play to Emmanuel Sanders set the Steelers up in the red zone, but Pittsburgh was unable to get in the end zone and Shaun Suisham was summoned for the 30-yard field goal to make it 14-3.
Stephen Gostkowski then added three of his own, connecting on his 16th straight field goal from 20 yards out, but a Brady sack in the red zone led to New England having to settle for three.
Building on some of the momentum from their previous drive, the Steelers drove down the field in just four and Roethlisberger hit Antonio Brown from 27 yards out to cut the Pittsburgh deficit in half with two minutes to go.
An effective two-minute drill from the Pats would make it 24-10 at the half as Ridley took it in for the fourth straight game with 13 seconds left in the second. Brady threw for 252 yards in the first two quarters, his most in a game since Oct. 18, 2009.
It was all Steelers to start the third though as twice Roethlisberger hot Jericho Cotchery to tie the game at 24 just eight minutes into the quarter before Gostkowski connected on his second of the day to put New England back up, 27-24 with 2:42 left.
Then, after passing Warren Moon to move into sixth place on the all-time completions list, Brady connected with Aaron Dobson for his third touchdown throw of the day and, more importantly, the Pats extended the lead back to 10 just after the start of the fourth.

A big 12-yard sack by Dane Fletcher on third down would force a Pittsburgh punt. With under 13 minutes remaining, the Patriots took over looking for the knockout blow. And they did just that. Ridley took it in for his second touchdown of the day to cap a eight-play, 61-yard drive and push the Pats over the 40-point plateau for the first time this season as they went up 41-24.

Brady then capped off his day with an 81-yard touchdown to Dobson, who went over 100 yards with the grab and for the first time in his career. The throw gave Brady his 15th career four-touchdown, no interception game – the most all-time. LeGarrette Blount added a five-yard run with under three minutes left.

Brady would finish 23-of-33 on the day for 432 yards and the four touchdown passes. Gronkowski had 143 yards, Amendola chipped in with 122 and Dobson piled up 130. Ridley found the end zone twice and ended up with 115 yards. It was the sixth time under Brady that the Pats have put up 50 points in a game.

The All-Pro summed it up nicely after the game, saying “You throw it, they catch it, they run with it. It makes a good day for a quarterback.”

The Pats are off next week before resuming their schedule in Week 11 in a date with the Panthers on Monday night in which Shane Vereen could return. Pittsburgh fell to a disappointing 2-6 on the year.


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