We should’ve known. The Broncos beat the Patriots. Its what they do. Last night was no exception as Denver beat New England 17-7 at Gillette Stadium. While the Patriots will be under heavy scrutiny and fire this week in the papers and on the airwaves, a lot of credit needs to be given to the Broncos. They won the game. The Patriots didn’t simply lose it.
Alan Greenberg claims that this game came down to the Patriots not being willing to pay for the players who would’ve made a difference last night. Mike Reiss has Bill Belichick saying that his club needs to do better in every facet of the game. John Tomase says that the Patriots failed last night among other things to prove that they were not “the most fraudulent 2-0 team in the league.” Shalise Manza Young observes that the Denver jinx is alive and well for the Patriots. Rich Garven looks at the Patriots offense struggling mightily against the Broncos in the loss. Mike Lowe says that the Broncos pounded the Patriots on both sides of the ball last night. David Brown has more on the poor showing in front of a national audience. Chad Finn blogged the game in detail last night.
Michael Felger says that Tom Brady has been hung out to dry by the Patriots. Christopher Price gives us his 10 Things We Learned Last Night. Albert Breer writes that in the past, you could count on the Patriots not beating themselves. That doesn’t seem to be the case any longer. Steve Solloway says that it is too early to pass judgment on this team, but Dan Shaughnessy says that the Patriots truly look like a team in distress. Steve Buckley looks at how the lack of a running game killed the Patriots last night. Jim Donaldson has more on Denver maintaining their dominance over Brady, Belichick and company.
Christopher L. Gasper says that Tom Brady isn’t quite ready to give up on this team and is receivers just yet. Kevin McNamara says that Brady may not be ready to give up, but his frustration is clearly showing. Karen Guregian asserts that with the offense struggling as it has been, the burden falls to the defense to play even better than it did in the Super Bowl winning years. Tony Chamberlain looks at what the Denver defense did to stop the Patriots offense.
Tony Massarotti nails rookie Stephen Gostkowski for having a field goal blocked for the second straight week. Bob Duffy looks at Josh Miller, who had a great night punting, but that’s not a good thing for the Patriots. McDonald says everyone must be wondering this morning why the Patriots let Adam Vinatieri go. But he adds that its early yet.
Dan Ventura looks at Javon Walker burning the Patriots. Peter May asks why can’t we get players like Javon Walker. Yes, he really asked that. McNamara writes that “he playmaker the Patriots half-heartedly chased in the off-season came back to break their hearts last night.” Jennifer Toland has more on Walker burning the Patriots. Breer looks at Doug Gabriel’s fourth quarter (6 catches for 65 yards and a TD) as the lone bright spot in the passing game. Joe McDonald has more on Gabriel getting into the action for the Patriots.
Ventura highlights the play of the game as the 32 yard TD pass from Jake Plummer to Javon Walker in the second quarter. Felger notes that Denver’s blitz really wasn’t evidence last night and they didn’t need it. Joe McDonald provides his game analysis for last night on all sides of the ball. Greenberg has his turning point of the game and other analysis and notes. Tim Weisberg offers up a quick report card for the Patriots last night. Dan Pires had provided five keys to the game yesterday, today he looks at how they turned out.
Lenny Megliola looks at the Patriots going to China next summer for the first-ever NFL action in that country. Michael Parente has more on the announcement of the game. Garven also reports on the Patriots going to China.
Breer notes that tonight’s Saints/Falcons game in New Orleans is being viewed by many as the rebirth of that region after the devastation of last year. Christopher Price looks at five Patriots who will be watching the activities tonight with interest. Randall Gay, Kevin Faulk, Eric Alexander, Marquise Hill and Jarvis Green all have ties to the area and are glad to see football back in New Orleans.
Tomase’s notebook has Corey Dillon missing much of the game with an arm injury. Reiss’ notebook has more on the announcement that the Patriots will play a preseason game with the Seahawks in China next summer. The Projo notebook has more on the first China Bowl next summer. Garven’s notebook examines the Patriots inability to create turnovers in the first three games. The S-T notebook has more on the China game and a number of other items. Lowe’s notebook also reports on the trip to the far east for the Patriots next summer.
The news wasn’t any better for the Red Sox, who dropped a 13-4 clunker to the Blue Jays despite David Ortiz’s 53rd home run of the season.
Gordon Edes looks at a series of gaffes in the field doing the Red Sox in. Jeff Horrigan has a quick look at the game. David Heuschkel has more on the follies in the outfield for the Red Sox yesterday. Phil O’Neill has a look at Ortiz reaching another milestone. David Borges also reports from Toronto.
Horrigan looks at Ortiz tying Babe Ruth’s AL record for home runs on the road. Horrigan’s notebook has Terry Francona saying that the brutal travel schedule that the Red Sox have had this season could’ve contributed to their rash of injuries. Heuschkel’s notebook has more on Ortiz tying the Babe. O’Neill’s notebook says that Francona and Theo Epstein will discuss the coaching staff after the season ends next Sunday.
Fluto Shinzawa has the Bruins looking good thus far in the preseason. Stephen Harris says that the good results early make hockey more fun for the Bruins. Harris also has the Bruins counting on Hannu Toivonen as the key to their season.
Jim McCabe and George Kimball have Europe retaining the Ryder Cup with a runaway win this weekend. Bob Ryan says that this was another ugly effort by the Americans. McCabe’s notebook looks at Darren Clarke riding an emotional wave after losing his wife to cancer last month. Kimball’s notebook looks at Scott Verplank scoring a hole-in-one.
NESN has Red Sox/Blue Jays at 7:00. ESPN has Saints/Falcons at 8:30.