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New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski made the most out of his four targets by ending up with receptions in the Patriots 38-20 win over the Philadelphia Eagles. Gronkowski on the day 59 yards and a touchdown. Gronkowski's touchdown was a 24-yard strike in the fourth quarter and that score gave him 11 on the year which is a new career high.
This was Gronkowski's fourth straight game with a touchdown and six scores in his past four games, but his yardage took dip after his three prior games he averaged over 100 yards per game. In standard leagues Gronkowski would have earned approximately 11 fantasy points and 15 fantasy points in point per reception leagues. His numbers put him at the top of the tight end position for Week 12.
New England Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker rebounded from a poor performance last week against the San Diego Chargers and had his sixth 100-yard receiving game of the year with 115 yards. Welker also pulled in two touchdowns which is his second game of the year for Welker to have two touchdowns; the last was on the opening week of the season. Welker was able to get open against the Philadelphia Eagles secondary as he had a game high eight receptions.
Welker's two touchdown receptions came on a 41-yard reception in the second quarter and a 9-yard score in the third quarter. Depending on your league Welker could have cost owners some points by rushing for minus nine yards on one play. Even with the negative rushing yardage play, he currently is the top wide receiver for Week 12 with approximately 23 points in standard leagues and upwards toward 30 in point per reception leagues.
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had three touchdowns today in their win over the Philadelphia Eagles and those three touchdowns were his seventh game of the season where he threw for at least three touchdown passes. Brady also threw for 361 yards which was his highest since the third week of the season when he threw for 387 yards against the Buffalo Bills. Brady also gained owners a few extra points by gaining 28 yards on the ground. Brady earned most of his points in the second half when he connected on two touchdown passes, one to Rob Gronkowski and the other to Wes Welker.
This performance by Brady continues his hot streak over the past three games where he has not thrown an interception during that time and has nine touchdown passes in the past three weeks. In standard scoring leagues Brady would have earned owners approximately 28 fantasy points and could end up earning the most points overall in Week 12.
The Patriots improve to 8-3 to maintain their two game lead over the Jets in the AFC East after a 38-20 rout of the Eagles. This week's match up was hyped as a must-win for the struggling Eagles, who sit at third place in the NFC East. But for the Patriots, it meant silencing some doubters who felt they might struggle against a good defense and an often dynamic offense.
It turns out that the depleted Eagles are still in trouble, as their hot start early in the first quarter cooled quickly once Brady began to fire back.
Philly and their backup starter Vince Young looked unstoppable on their first drive of the game, going up 7-0 just 2:47 into the start of the game. Young went deep to Celek for 22 yards on the very first snap, then shortly thereafter he hit Riley Cooper for a 58 yard bomb to bring them to the New England 4-yard line. The 5 play, 84 yard drive culminated in a two yard touchdown run from LeSean McCoy.
The Patriots did nothing on their first possession, punting the ball back to the Eagles. Young promptly hit DeSean Jackson deep down the middle for 44 yards. They got all the way to the Patriot 25 yard line but failed to convert on third down, setting up a successful Alex Henery 43 yard field goal to put them up 10-0.
It was starting to look like the Patriots would have yet another scoreless first quarter when Brady and the offense got the ball for the second time. Only this time they leaned on BenJarvus Green-Ellis to establish some rhythm on and help their defense get some rest on the sideline. It worked, and on his 8th carry of the drive Green-Ellis finally put the Patriots on the board with a four yard touchdown run.
On their next drive, Brady really started to hit his stride, hitting hitting Aaron Hernandez for 30 yards and completing a deep pass to Deion Branch who almost took it to the house, getting tackled at the 1 yard line for a 63 yard gain. Green-Ellis again ran it into the end zone, to put the Patriots up 14-10. They would never relinquish the lead after that.
After they went down 10-0, the Patriots went on a 38-3 scoring run, dominating in every facet of their offensive game. Tom Brady finished the game 24/34 for 361 yards and three touchdowns; for a quarterback rating of 134.6. Deion Branch and Wes Welker had 125 and 115 yards respectively. Branch, Welker, Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski combined for 361 yards and three touchdowns, and the Patriots as a team managed 104 yards on the ground; including 27 rushing yards from Brady.
On the other hand, the Patriot secondary was prescribed a major dose of luck. Vince Young threw for 400 yards, 1 touchdown and an interception. A few huge passes dropped by Desean Jackson could have turned into points for the Eagles, but Young and his receivers struggled all night long in the red zone even when they excelled between the 20s.
Also disappointing for the Eagles was LeSean McCoy, who had one of his worst games of the season amassing just 31 yards on 10 carries. The Patriots defensive line held the best rushing offense in the league to 73 total yards on the ground.
The Pats look ahead now to next week the Patriots take on the winless Colts, which is the closest thing to a guaranteed win in the NFL as there is.
Tom Brady was not done after a third quarter touchdown pass to Wes Welker. For good measure, he added another touchdown pass, his third of the game, to Rob Gronkowski. With this latest TD toss, see video below, the game is well in hand as the Patriots now have a 38-13 lead in the fourth quarter.
Second down and 19 was no problem from Brady who has been throwing darts this game. Brady stepped up in the pocket to find Gronkowski going straight up the seam. The Eagles defenders could not converge in time and Gronkowski finally got on the scoreboard after a fine performance last week. Brady's other two touchdown passes in the game went to Wes Welker who had a quiet week during the Patriots' last outing.
A win will move the Patriots to 8-3 on the season and 4-2 on the road during 2011. After this last touchdown, you can go ahead and pencil the Patriots in for those wins.
A touchdown on the opening drive of the quarter was the only scoring during the second, leaving the Patriots ahead by 18 headed into the fourth.
Targeting Welker, Branch, and Hernandez, Brady led the team on a quick three-and-a-half minute drive down the field, covering 69 yards on eight plays before finding Welker on a slant. Diving out of bounds, Welker shoved the ball over the pylon at the last second to give the Patriots seven more points.
Now down by 18, the Eagles were in a situation where they needed seven to stay alive. For a while, it seemed like they would get there, picking apart a suddenly vulnerable pass defense to get into the red zone. There, however, the Patriots' defense proved up to the task. After three straight runs left the Eagles with a fourth down just shy of the end zone, they decided to turn to the air. Vince Young had time, but with tight coverage, he sailed a pass high and out of bounds for the turnover. The two sides would exchange punts to end the half, with the Patriots already trying to wear out the clock on the ground.
The Patriots extended their lead early into the third quarter when Tom Brady found one of his favorite targets, Wes Welker, for another touchdown hookup. After Welker's second touchdown of the game against the Philadelphia Eagles, the Patriots lead 31-13.
On second and goal from the 9-yard line, Brady found Welker near the goal line. Welker did the rest of the work diving pass the defender and stretching the ball across the goal line. Welker also caught a 41-yard touchdown pass from Brady in the second quarter.
After trailing 10-0 early in the contest, the Patriots have have gone on a 31-3 run. The Patriots' outburst to take the lead in the game came in the 17-point second quarter with some long pass plays, Welker's first touchdown included. Besides the Welker touchdown catch you see above, there was no other scoring by either team in the third quarter of the game.
The New England Patriots have taken a 24-13 lead into halftime thanks to a 17-point second quarter.
While the Eagles may have come out and staggered the Patriots with their best shot to start the game, New England is the team that's proven capable of maintaining the intensity and momentum through the first 30 minutes of football in Philadelphia.
With the second quarter starting with a Philadelphia punt, the Patriots found themselves with good field position looking to tie the game or go ahead with a touchdown. While the first two plays of the drive--going for a net loss of three yards when combined with a defensive offside penalty--didn't exactly inspire confidence, Tom Brady proved he was capable of hanging with the Eagles in the passing game. Stepping away from pressure, Brady directed Deion Branch and then found him for a long gain. Staying on his feet, Branch would eventually zig-zag his way to the 1-yard line, where BenJarvus Green-Ellis punched the ball home to make it 14-10, New England.
While the defense would come up big on the next drive, with Antwaun Molden picking off an underthrown pass from Vince Young on the very first play, the offense would not be able to capitalize immediately. Some poor running from the backup running backs left the Patriots facing a 39-yard field goal, which Stephen Gostkowski pushed wide right.
A 3-and-out would give Tom Brady and co. another shot, however, and this time they would come through. After some solid gains on a run by Danny Woodhead and passes to Aaron Hernandez and Wes Welker, the Patriots had a 2nd-and-1 play to get creative with. Again Brady targeted Wes Welker, who faked an underneath run to shake off the coverage before going deep. With a rare long ball coming his way, the NFL's leading receiver pulled a bit further away from his nearest competition, running unopposed into the end zone to make it a 41-yard touchdown reception.
While the Eagles finally got back to scoring with a late field goal, pulling within a touchdown of the Patriots, Tom Brady needed just a few more plays to get the Patriots back into Eagles territory. And while this drive would fizzle out short of the end zone, Stephen Gostkowski managed to nail his second attempt from 45 yards, answering the Eagles' field goal with one of his own.
The Patriots will start the second half with the ball, with a chance to really step on the Eagles' throats with a score.
Despite trailing 10-0 early to the Philadelphia Eagles, the New England Patriots responded on the road with 14 unanswered points to take the lead. The second touchdown on a 1-yard run by BenJarvus Green-Ellis followed a 63-yard pass play from Tom Brady to Deion Branch.
On the big pass play on 3rd and 13 from the New England 36-yard line, Brady avoided a sack and stepped up to find Branch, after calling his shot of course (see gif below):
After guiding Branch to where he wanted him on the field, Brady fired a quick pass to Branch that got by a diving Eagles' defender. Branch took the ball all the way down to the Eagles 1-yard line with a nifty run. He looked to be stopped near the sideline at the 15-yard line but cut back sharply to the middle of the field and then made another cut toward the goal line at the 5-yard line and barreled into two Eagles players.
The Philadelphia Eagles hold a 10-7 lead over the New England Patriots after one quarter of action in Philly thanks to an unexpectedly aggressive offensive attack.
With backup Vince Young in for the Eagles' franchise QB in Michael Vick, the Patriots did not enter the game expecting a major passing attack. Those expectations will clearly have to be re-evaluated after the way the Eagles played their first couple of drives. Starting out at the 16 after a poor return effort, Vince Young let loose three straight passes. The first one went 22 yards to bring the Eagles out to the 38 yard line, the second fell incomplete, and the third left the Patriots reeling. A perfectly thrown lob over the top to sophomre Riley Cooper went for 58 yards, setting up a quick touchdown run. With just over two minutes gone the Eagles had gone 84 yards in five plays to take a 7-0 lead.
If that drive was a message to the Patriots to watch for the deep ball, they apparently weren't paying too much attention. After New England's first drive of the game stalled out on a curious 3rd-and-2 pass call, the Eagles went right back to the air. A wide open DeSean Jackson picked up 44 yards on the first play of the ensuing Philadelphia drive, bringing the Eagles into New England territory. The passing game would falter there, however, with three straight incompletions forcing the Eagles to settle for a field goal.
The Patriots would not use quite so much flair to get on the board, but would do so all the same on their next possession. A steady diet of BenJarvus Green-Ellis runs and short passes brought the Patriots slowly-but-surely into the Red Zone, where an 11 yard strike to Aaron Hernandez sealed the deal, bringing New England within three as the quarter wound down.
New England Patriots third string rookie quarterback Ryan Mallett joins WR Chad Ochocinco and five other players on the Pats inactive list for their game against the Philadelphia Eagles at 4:15 p.m. EDT on Sunday afternoon. Mallett has not yet played in a game this season for New England while Ochocinco had played in all 10 games to this point.
Joining Mallett and Ochocinco (hamstring) on the inactive list for the Pats are C Dan Connolly (groin), S Patrick Chung (ankle), LB Brandon Spikes (knee), LB Dane Fletcher (thumb) and S Devin McCourty (shoulder).
Philadelphia only has two players listed as inactive for Sunday's game, with quarterback Michael Vick (ribs) and wide receiver Jeremy Maclin (shoulder/hamstring) both out. Vick has played in nine games this season, throwing for 2,193 yards and 11 touchdowns while rushing for 535 yards on 65 rushes.
Chung's injury appears to be the most serious, as he has missed the team's last two games with a foot injury from the final minutes of the Pats' loss to the New York Giants four weeks ago. Chung has played in seven games this season for New England, recording 36 tackles (19 assists) and had one interceptions.
McCourty suffered a shoulder injury in New England's win over the New York Jets after a collision with Sterling Moore. In nine games this season, McCourty has 46 tackles (11 assists) and three passes defended.
Chad Ochocinco, who was on the injury report for the first time this season, is battling a hamstring issue. This will be the first time Ochocinco will miss time in a Patriots uniform. In 10 games (and only two starts), Ochocinco has 11 receptions for 201 yards and zero touchdowns.
The New England Patriots visit the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday (4:15 p.m. ET on CBS). Here's where you can find the contest on television and radio.
The Patriots still have a long road before they seal their postseason destiny, but this game against the Eagles might be the most important they have left.
Tom Brady and the New England Patriots are heading to Philly this weekend to battle a reinvigorated Eagles team looking to get back into the playoff picture in the NFC East.
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