Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Pats/Dolphins see record-setting O, pitiful D

Monday night’s AFC East bout between the New England Patriots and the Miami Dolphins was a numbers game, and the numbers were big.

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady totaled a franchise-record 517 passing yards with four touchdowns and an interception, and Dolphins signal-caller Chad Henne tossed for 416 yards, two touchdowns and a pick. Henne also led his team in rushing with 59 yards and a score on the ground.

Bill Belichick was able to put the game in much simpler terms. “It’s always good to win down here at Miami,” the Patriots coach said in is postgame presser.

Despite a better-than-average showing from its own offense, Miami had no answer for New England’s offensive attack. Wes Welker caught two scoring passes from Brady, including a 99-and-a-half yarder, and tight ends Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski also caught touchdowns. BenJarvus Green-Ellis scored the Patriots’ lone rushing touchdown.

Still, Belichick said New England is “a long way from being a good football team right now.” And he’s right.

Calling his offense “good” would be an incredible understatement. Calling his defense “good” would be even more ridiculous – just in a different way.

Believe it or not, the Patriots needed almost every little bit of Brady's production, as the defense just couldn’t completely close the deal, trading its solid third-down defense (where Miami converted 14 percent of the time) for dismal fourth-down efficiency which saw the Dolphins go 80 percent.

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