Tom Brady completed 5-of-9 passes for 38 yards and an interception as the New England Patriots trail the San Francisco 49ers, 7-0, at the end of the first quarter from Gillette Stadium on Sunday Night Football.
New England was prepared to get out to a hot start yet again, after running through the Houston Texans last week, but the offense couldn't seem to find any room to work with.
Running back Stevan Ridley gave Pats fans a scare on the first possession of the game, when it looked like he had fumbled inside the New England 30-yard line. Ridley was marked down after an official review and the Patriots finished a quick three-and-out to give the Niners the ball for their first possession of the game.
Against a much-improved Patriots defense, the second-year phenom Colin Kaepernick drove San Francisco down the field, completing four of his first five passes for 60 yards and a touchdown. He completed two passes, including a 24-yard touchdown, to former-Patriot standout Randy Moss.The NIners, who rank second in the NFL in rushing yards per game, seemed to catch New England off guard by coming out of the gate firing, only running the ball once on their first possession.
After back-to-back punts, Brady tried to get things started for the Patriots offense, looking for Wes Welker deep. Niners cornerback Carlos Rogers wasn't having any of that though, as he intercepted the pass and ran the ball back to the New England five-yard line.
Two plays later, Delanie Walker fumbled a short pass back to the Patriots, as Aquib Talib recovered the ball and gave New England possession yet again.
San Francisco head coach Jim Harbaugh used some trickery just as the game seemed to be calming down in the first quarter, running a fourth-and-10 from their own 41-yard line to give the Niners a first down and momentum with just over three minutes remaining in the quarter. That wasn't enough for San Francisco, as veteran David Akers botched a 39-yard field goal that would have given the Niners a 10-0 lead early.
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