by Chris Warner, Patriots Daily Staff
September 15, 2009
Well, after the excitement of New England’s rather ridiculous, quite undeserved 25-24 win, it’s time to reflect on a past season opener with Buffalo: the Patriots’ narrow 19-17 victory in 2006.
That contest revealed a depleted receiving corps. Was last night’s game (ingredients: 90 percent horse dollop, 10 percent pluck) a bad omen?
We’ll get a better idea next week against the Jets. In the meantime, some quick thoughts.
Soft Serve, Crunchy Center: New England looked less than tough throughout. Failed short yardage plays on offense and defense. Pressure allowed on Tom Brady. Pressure lacking on Bills quarterback Trent Edwards (at least until he had to pass). The Bills looked better overall and should have won. In fact, had Pats prayer-answerer Leodis McKelvin taken a knee instead of fumbling the kickoff, they would have. Kudos, then, to Brandon Meriweather and Pierre Woods for ripping the ball free. Nice, Pulp-Fiction-style adrenaline shot, there.
Come What Mayo: As of this writing, all we know is that linebacker Jerod Mayo left the game in the first half. I’ll say no more about Pats play callers and Game One knee injuries.
Brady In Red: Great to see the old school unis, but let’s not make a habit of it. (Bad memories, people.) Not so great watching Brady lacking rhythm early. Solid overall (39 of 53 for 378 yards and two game-winning TDs), here’s hoping his fourth quarter momentum continues next week.
The Big Schobel: Bills defensive end Aaron Schobel made a big impact (a few, actually), sacking Brady once and returning a leaping interception for a touchdown. He did not make Pats tackle Matt Light look good, at all.
So Angry I Could Screen: Bills running back Fred Jackson had five receptions for 83 yards and a touchdown. Oh, screen pass. How ugly you are when the opponent utilizes you.
Let’s end on a good note (make it two):
How LoMo Can You GoGo?: Yes, Laurence Maroney only had 10 rushes for 32 yards, but when he got room to go, he went, looking ready and able.
It’s All About The Benjamin: If you heard that Randy Moss and Wes Welker had 12 catches each, who would you figure scored twice in the final 3:30? Would you guess tight end Benjamin Watson?
Nope. Me neither.
Call this the first of many roller coaster rides. Just like a child, we want to go again.
Email Chris Warner at firstname.lastname@example.org