We just did the Monday Morning humble pie, so now it’s time for the Monday Morning doughnut post for the players and positions who did really well last night.
1. Special Teams:
The Patriots have one of the best special teams units in football. They cover well and have two good returners in Edelman and Amendola. Amendola’s 87 yard return to the five yard line set up a Patriot score and turned the game around in favor of New England. Also, they have the best kicker in the National Football League named Stephen Gostkowski. He nailed a 54 yard field goal to win the game. As a unit, excellent last night and it had a huge hand in winning the game.
2. The Defense:
It wasn’t very pretty for much of the game, but it was clutch and it was good enough. They held up that is all I can say. They stuffed the run, they applied pressure when needed, had the best corner on the field shutting down the best WR, and kept the Giants explosive offense to field goals. They deserve a mix of doughnuts and humble pie.
3. QB Play:
Tom Brady got touchdowns when needed and Eli got field goals when touchdowns were needed. The difference in the outcome.
4. The Run Game:
Good enough when there wasn’t very much space. That’s all you can ask for, be good enough when the line is getting no push in the run game. Also, pick up blocks which James White did a few times.
5. Tight End Play:
I know Scott Chandler dropped a wide open pass and that was horrible, but he did catch a one yard touchdown on the opening drive and later on Gronk broke a 76 yard touchdown. Two big guys who balled out at times last night and both are excellent in blocking.
1. WR Danny Amendola:
He stepped up big time when Brady and the Patriots needed him to after Julian Edelman went down with an injury. Amendola had 10 catches and none were bigger than the fourth down catch he had when the game was on the line. He also caught two more on the game-winning drive that set up the field goal.
2. QB Tom Brady:
Okay, he wasn’t his best by a long shot, but with the game on the line and a second chance after an almost interception, he was as clutch as ever. He was under pressure for the entire game, but still did enough to help his team win. He fumbled twice threw an interception, but remained unaffected by the events. The drive to set up the game winning field goal was enough to put him on this list.
3. CB Malcolm Butler:
After the 87 yard touchdown, Butler was lights out. He gave up 2 catches for 5 yards on 9 targets after the touchdown. This was against Beckham JR. This was his best performance of the season. He also knocked what probably would have been the game sealing touchdown from Beckham JR’s hands. Clutch and greatness by Butler last night.
4. RB LeGarrette Blount:
He did enough in a game where there wasn’t much room to run. He found spaces throughout the game and had a diving touchdown over the line for a key touchdown. He’s a good player.
5. Kicker Stephen Gostkowski:
He won the game. I knew when the defense held the Giants to three points Brady could get the team in field goal range and Gostkowski would make it. That’s the perks of having a clutch kicker and the best kicker in football. He barely got that in, but he did, and that is all that matters. He made two field goals, but none bigger or better than the 54 yard one.