Patriots 31, Eagles 13, End 3rd: Opening Drive Touchdown Helps Patriots Build Lead

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.

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