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Patriots Roll Jets 41-3 on Christmas Eve

Sunday, December 25, 2016


Brady throws for three touchdown passes in a Patriots blowout win

The New England Patriots blew out the New York Jets 41-3 on Christmas Eve at Gillette Stadium.  

"The defense played great, got us the ball a lot. It was a great win. We played in some tough conditions and we showed some mental toughness. It was a great win; 13-2 is pretty good," said Patriots quarterback Tom Brady after the game. 

The win moves the Patriots to 13-2 on the season and with a win over Miami on New Years Day, they will clinch the top seed in the AFC. 

Patriots Turn Jets Turnovers Into Points 

Already up 3-0, Malcolm Butler picked off Jets quarterback Bryce Petty on the Jets own 47-yard line. 

On the Patriots ensuing possession, Brady found Martellus Bennett in the back of the end zone for a five-yard touchdown pass, giving the Patriots a 10-0 lead after a Gostkowski extra point was good. 

Two Jets possessions later, New England’s Elandon Roberts force a fumble that was recovered by Butler at the Jets 30 yard line. The play also knocked Petty out of the game, meaning Fitzpatrick would take over. 

On this ensuing possession, the Patriots would have to settle for a Gostkowski 22 yard field goal to go up 13-0 with 11:13 left to play in the half. 

The Patriots defense was not done yet. 

With Fitzpatrick under center for the Jets, he threw a deep pass intended for Brandon Marshall, but it was picked off by New England’s Eric Rowe at the Patriots 46-yard line. 

On the Patriots next offensive possession, Brady hit tight end Matt Lengel for an 18-yard touchdown pass to give New England a 20-0 lead following a Gostkowski extra point.  

The catch by Lengel was the first catch and first touchdown of his career. He was previously a member of the Cincinnati Bengals practice squad. 

"Matt got his first touchdown pass. That was pretty cool. I would say he really wasn't the first option on the play, but he sprung free and it ended up being a big play in the game," Brady said. 

Closing Out the Half 

Already up 20-0, the Patriots seemed content to run out the clock and go into the locker room. They were getting the ball back at the start of the second half.

Following two run plays by Dion Lewis, the Jets called a timeout, looking to get the ball back. 

Out of the timeout, Brady hit Edelman for 9 yards, then launched a 47-yard pass to Malcolm Mitchell that fell incomplete but drew a pass interference penalty. 

The drive was capped off with a 25-yard pass from Brady to James white to give the Patriots a 27-0 lead. 

"The key thing for us was getting the first-down. We ran it twice and then hit Julian [Edelman] for the first-down so that kind of gave us a chance to - I think we were on about the 30 maybe; somewhere in there. So we needed about another 40 yards really to get into field goal range; 35, 40 yards. Then we got it all on one play. Yeah, that was obviously a big swing for us at that point of time," said Patriots head coach Bill Belichick after the game. 

In the second half, Butler would get his second interception of the game and the Patriots would add two more touchdowns in the second half in the form of LeGarrette Blount and would go on to win the game easily. 

The two touchdowns were Blount's 15th and 16th scores of the season. 

The Leaders 

Brady was taken out in the third quarter and replaced by Jimmy Garoppolo. Brady finished the day completing 17 of 27 passes for 214 yards and three touchdowns. 

Julian Edelman had five catches for 89 yards while LeGarrette Blount ran for 50 yards on 20 carries with two touchdowns.

Next up 

The Patriots close out the regular season on Sunday, January 1 when they visit the Miami Dolphins. 

Game time is set for 1 p.m. 


Related Slideshow: 16 Plays That Define the Patriots 2016 Season Regular Season - in Vines

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Jimmy Garoppolo Starts the Season 

With Tom Brady suspended for four games, backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo started the season in Arizona. He immediately made his presence known with this 37 yard touchdown pass to Chris Hogan. 

The Patriots edged Arizona 23-21. 

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LeGarrette Blount Leaps Over a Dolphins Player 

LeGarrette Blount took a toss from rookie quarterback Jacoby Brissett and proceeded to make an Olympic hurdle type leap over Dolphins' defensive back Byron Maxwell and pick up the first down 

Blount ran for 123 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries.

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Garoppolo Dominates Miami 

In the Patriots home opener against the rival Miami Dolphins, Garoppolo was dominant, completing 18 of 27 passes for 234 yards and three touchdowns, including this one to Danny Amendola.

Garoppolo would get injured just before halftime and the Patriots would hold on to win 31-24. 

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Tom Brady Returns 

After serving his four game suspension, Brady returned in week five against the Cleveland Browns. 

Brady showed some emotion after a run toward the Cleveland sideline for a first down. 

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Dont'a Hightower 

Hightower's big hit on Browns quarterback Cody Kessler knocked him out of the game. The next week, Hightower would sack Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton in the end zone for a safety and change the momentum of that game. 

So far this season, Hightower has 1.5 sacks, one safety, 14 solo tackles and one pass defensed in six games played. 

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Brady to Bennett 

In his first game back, Brady found tight end Martellus Bennett in the end zone three times to help the Patriots to a 33-13 win over the Browns. 

Bennett had six catches for 67 yards and three touchdowns in the game. 

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Tom Brady Plays First Game Back at Gillette 

Brady made his return to the Patriots in the previous game on the road against Cleveland, but his first game back at Gillette Stadium came against the Bengals. 

Brady hit running back James White for his first touchdown pass of the day and New England won 35-17. 

He finished the game completing 29 of 35 passes for 376 yards and three touchdowns.

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Gronkowski Catches 69th Career Touchdown Pass

Rob Gronkowski's record-breaking touchdown came near the end of the first half against Buffalo on a 53-yard strike over the middle from  Brady giving the Patriots a 21-10 lead. 

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Gronkowski Injured on Hit by Seattle's Earl Thomas

Near the end of the 2nd quarter of the Patriots game against Seattle, Earl Thomas hit Rob Gronkowski square in the chest. Just two weeks later, it would be announced that Gronkowski would be out for the season. 

The Patriots lost to Seattle 31-24

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Brady Nearly Fumbles Against Jets, Throws Touchdown to Mitchell 

Trailing 10-3 and on the Jets five-yard line, Brady fumbled the snap picked it up and found Malcolm Mitchell in the back of the end zone for a touchdown to tie the game at ten following a Gostkowski extra point. 

The Patriots would go on to win 22-17. 

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Tom Brady Kneels on Win #201

With the Patriots 26-10 win over the LA Rams on Sunday afternoon at Gillette Stadium, Brady picked up career win number 201 of his career, passing Peyton Manning for the most all-time. 

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Shea McClellin Blocks Ravens Field Goal 

The Ravens threatened to take the lead, 3-2, midway through the first quarter on a field goal attempt by kicker Justin Tucker, but New England's Shea McClellin jumped over the center and got the block. The Patriots offense scored a touchdown on their ensuing possession to take a 9-0 lead. 

The Patriots would go on to win the game 30-23. 

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Blount Breaks Curtis Martin's Record for Rushing TDs in a Season

Running back LeGarrette Blount recorded his 15th rushing touchdown of the season in the Patriots win over Denver. With the score, he passed Curtis Martin for most rushing touchdowns in a season. 

The Patriots beat Denver 16-3 to clinch AFC East. 

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McCourty's Hit on DeMaryius Thomas 

On a fourth and 2, Devin McCourty put an end to Denver's come come back hopes with this hit on DeMaryius Thomas that forced him to drop the ball. 

Had Thomas made the catch, the Broncos would have likely scored on the drive, making the final minutes a little more nervewracking. 

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Matt Lengel Catches First Touchdown Pass

Lengel came over to the Patriots from the Bengals practice squad and had never caught a touchdown pass in his career.

Already up 13-0, Tom Brady hit Lengel over the middle for an 18-yard touchdown pass to give the Patriots a 20-0 lead. It was Lengel's first catch, first target, and first touchdown.  

The Patriots would go on to beat the Jets 41-3.

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Michael Floyd's Block on Lippitt to Spring Edelman Against Miami 

Michael Floyd's block on Miami's Tony Lippit to spring Julian Edelman's 77 yard touchdown is one of the greatest blocks in Patriots history. 

The Patriots beat the Dolphins 35-14 to clinch the top seed in the AFC heading into the playoffs. 


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