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Same old story: Patriots defense barely survives

Gronkowski makes a touchdown catch over Gomes during their NFL football game in Landover, Maryland Reuters

We’ve seen this one before. The Patriots won another close shootout, this time 34-27 over the Redskins.  Here’s what we learned:

1. The Patriots defense was bailed out at the end, but it shouldn’t have got that far. They actually forced two punts in the fourth quarter with a seven point lead. Tom Brady and the Patriots offense failed to score after both stops, resulting in one pissed off offensive coordinator.

2. It looked like the Redskins tied the game in the final two minutes, but a Santana Moss touchdown was called back by penalty. On the next play, Moss bobbled a pass that was intercepted by Jerod Mayo. Game over.

3. Yeah, it’s not a great sign for the Patriots that they gave up 463 yards of offense to Washington. The bigger problem is that New England’s defense doesn’t really seem to be getting improving in December like Bill Belichick teams usually do.  Washington held the ball for more than 36 minutes.

4. How good is Tom Brady? He threw for 357 yards, three touchdowns, and one interception and it felt like one of his worst games of the year. He missed a number of open receivers, including Wes Welker late in the fourth quarter on a play that could have put the Redskins away.

5. Rob Gronkowski caught six passes for 160 yards and two touchdowns. Defensive linemen couldn’t tackle him. Cornerbacks definitely couldn’t tackle him.

6. The Texans’ win in Cincinnati makes life tougher on the 10-3 Patriots in their bid to get a bye. The Patriots may have to win out to keep the spot. Next week’s game in Denver will be a fascinating matchup.

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22 Responses to “Same old story: Patriots defense barely survives”
  1. madtolive5 says: Dec 11, 2011 5:53 PM

    I’d say the red zone offense was the problem. 3 trips into the red zone and walked away with 6 points (2 FG and 1 INT). Yes the D had some trouble but that’s what the usually do. Give up yards.

  2. doe22us says: Dec 11, 2011 5:53 PM

    That defense is horrible there is no way they can survive a down game by Brady’s led offense.

  3. turdfurgerson68 says: Dec 11, 2011 6:02 PM

    Does this, or anything else matter…no one is going to defeat Green Bay this season.

    Can you imagine Aaron Rodgers going against the Patriots defense?!? He’ll throw for 400 yards easy…in the 1st half.

    Belichick did a commendable job with what he has, Brady is as good as ever, alas, it’s just not going to happen this season.

  4. profootballwalk says: Dec 11, 2011 6:04 PM

    Gronk is looking like John Mackey dragging tacklers and shaking them.

  5. realmendontletothermenleaponthem says: Dec 11, 2011 6:11 PM

    Fletcher’s hit on Brady was as clean as you get…horrible call. Refs should look at the reply on that, and just pick up the yellow flag…once again this proves the theory that the Pats either need special treatment or Belicheck must cheat to win.

  6. geniusfan says: Dec 11, 2011 6:14 PM

    The officials were horrible in this game for both sides. Andre Carter got called for a bogus roughing the passer penalty as did London Fletcher. Bad PI calls were littered throughout the game as well.

    But the worst was the Personal Foul called on Wilfork he hit a Redskins player on the back with his forearm before he was down and was called for it ridiculous.

    I feel bad for Brady. He knows that he has to be at an elite level any game or the Patriots have no chance this defense is epically bad.

  7. patriotinvasion says: Dec 11, 2011 6:19 PM

    “everyone and everything sucks”. Blah blah blah. Fact is that 10 out of 13 teams couldn’t score enough on this “sucky” defense. No reason it can’t be the same story for 3 games in the playoffs.

  8. bobhk says: Dec 11, 2011 6:22 PM

    Watch for some good D mash Brady and pats in the playoffs.

  9. david7590 says: Dec 11, 2011 6:25 PM

    One and done in the playoffs again

  10. mrizzo44 says: Dec 11, 2011 6:26 PM

    I don’t really like either of these teams…..but the redskins got jobbed by the refs, big time. Totally bogus roughing the passer call on London fletcher setup a patriots touchdown, and the redskins game-tying touchdown got called back because of a non-existent offensive pass interference call.

  11. sickcuz says: Dec 11, 2011 6:27 PM

    None of ya’ll Patriots fans need to be in here crying. Ya’ll got the refs in ya’ll back pocket.

  12. mornelithe says: Dec 11, 2011 6:33 PM

    It’s 13 games into the season now, and I think it’s pretty safe to say this is the defense that we can expect from the Pats this year. I understand it’s great fun to constantly scrutinize them, but what are people expecting? How many actual star players are there on the D-line?

    They gave up 400+ yards, you say. So…why is that a surprise again? Didn’t they literally make Orlovsky look good last week? Or have we completely forgotten the fact that this D is not predicated upon low yardage, but getting stops when it matters (4th in takeaways?) and points allowed (10th, right?). Yardage is inconsequential if those yards aren’t winning you the game.

    The yardage garbage aside, the fact that the D DID get the stop, is encouraging. But, Grossman is still not an elite QB…so what that means for the playoffs, isn’t really as encouraging. But seriously, stop expecting the D all of a sudden to start shutting down offenses completely, it’s not going to happen and just makes you look foolish to insinuate such a thing.

    Pats aren’t likely to win much, if anything, in the playoffs this year, but at least they’re still going.

  13. dlmcc1010 says: Dec 11, 2011 6:42 PM

    There is no way this team will get by Pittsburgh or Baltimore if theyre going to not play any kind of defense. Theyre defense is one of the top 3 worst units in the league.

  14. yeahyeahyeahbono14 says: Dec 11, 2011 6:45 PM

    That last minute offensive pass interference call on Santana Moss was LUDICROUS! Total bull.

  15. 8man says: Dec 11, 2011 6:56 PM

    Bad calls on day long for both sides.

    Worst. Defense. Ever.

  16. palinforpresidentofnorthkorea says: Dec 11, 2011 6:56 PM

    A Packers v Pats SB would lead to a mercy rule in the NFL.

  17. shalakka says: Dec 11, 2011 7:24 PM

    bad calls play calling? still Im upset w/ grossman!
    we had a chance at the end of the game. the throw wasnt bad, but what is he doing throwing that pass? he steped up in the pocket, and threw and made a terrible decesion. next year cant come soon enough. please get rid of gano too.

  18. deconjonesbitchslap says: Dec 11, 2011 7:53 PM

    their defense could never stop the packers. sorry, pats. your efforts are for naught.

  19. descendency says: Dec 11, 2011 8:15 PM

    the Patriots just need to play significantly better D in the redzone. They would have won the game in a run away if they gave up FGs instead of TDs.

    Devin McCourty looked abysmal today, again. He really needs to get healthy and show up next year.

  20. dienavinjohnson says: Dec 11, 2011 10:25 PM

    “deconjonesbitchslap says: Dec 11, 2011 7:53 PM

    their defense could never stop the packers. sorry, pats. your efforts are for naught.”

    Deacon, the word is hubris. I had it the night before the Pats lost to the Giants in Phoenix when I was walking around wearing a 19-0 sticker on my Bruschi jersey. The Patriots and the Saints are the only teams that have a chance to keep up with the Packers on offense.

    As a Pats fan I just hope and pray that Chung gets healthy in time to solidify the back end of the defense so they can stop playing wide receivers at safety.

  21. bosfaninva says: Dec 12, 2011 11:12 AM

    The Packers defense doesn’t exactly remind anyone of the 1965 World Champs, either. Just sayin’.

    But I was at the game yesterday, and the middle of the Pats’ zone defense is absurdly soft.

  22. rc33 says: Dec 12, 2011 1:45 PM

    Defensively, this team is a comedy act. And right…unlike Belichick squads of years past, these guys do not seem to be improving.
    Ihedigbo hadn’t started a game in 3 years with the Jets and due to injuries, he’s started 7 this season for N.E. And the man is just awful.
    Honestly, I’ve never seen a worse injury situation than what the Patriots secondary has been thru this year.

    Patrick Chung is so unreliable he should just retire. He’s missed 5 straight and counting. He’ll come back, play 2 games, then miss the next 3.

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