off I just want to thank all the fans of this site. I have been
promoting my books for sale primarily on this site. As a result, I
have sold almost 500 books in the past year. Thank you for your
support and patronage, both are greatly appreciated. I cannot tell
you how happy it made me when I read that report. So thank you Draft
fans and Patriot fans alike, and mostly thank you to all the fans of
my books and website worldwide.
and 10, the Cards lined up in a twins-left Weak Shotgun. The Pats matched
up in a 3-3 Nickel, with both safeties only a couple of yards behind
Collins. The Pats sent four as McClellin and Collins drop. The protection
was excellent. But the coverage was better. Palmer had to dump it off to
David (Johnson) curling out of the backfield. McCourty was there in
coverage. David tried to juke him, but McCourty hit him hard, spun him
around, and held on until McClellin, Collins, and Chung crashed into him
and sent him backwards.
and 5, the Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Winged shotgun. The Pats matched up
with seven guys on the LOS, two down and five up. They sent six, and only
Collins dropped a little. Chung got a great lane to Carson, and got in a
good shove but didn't knock him down. He hit Ellington who snuck out of
the backfield behind Chung. He just flew in a straight line angled up
field and to the sideline for a First. That guy is fast.
and 10, the Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Singleback. The Pats matched up in
a 2-4 Nickel with Chung up at the Will. The pocket isn't clean, but Palmer
had time. He finally fired at Floyd, and Butler had the coverage. Then
Floyd whined like a baby, and the refs give him a pacifier in the form of
and 10, the Cards lined up in a Singleback. The Pats matched up in a 3-3
Nickel, with Chung up at the Will in front of the TE. They ran a Smash.
Sheard had position, but got a little too aggressive going inside and lost
the edge. David was able to bounce it outside around him. Hightower hit
David helmet to helmet, and David spun out and amazingly maintained his
balance. Chung, Collins, and Ryan all got tripped up by the trash created
allowed David to get outside and turn on the speed. He shoved off
McCourty. Then ran away from Harmon, but McCourty did a great job
recovering. He sprinted up behind David from the blindside, and threw an
upper cut at the ball. This was one of those things as well. McCourty
punched the ball as he tackled him from behind, and David never saw him.
He had no business holding onto that ball, but he did.
and 10 at the 12, and the Cards lined up Empty. The Pats matched up in a
3-4. They brought seven. Sheard burst off the strongside edge and forced
Palmer to throw a little early. He threw it a little behind Floyd, and
Butler got a hand on it. He allowed Floyd cut in front of him. Then he
dived in front of him and knocked it down.
and 10 from the 12, the Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Singleback, which they
passed out of the last time they were on the goal line. The Pats matched
up in a 4-3. Palmer dropped and threw a fade as Sheard, who had burst
inside the ORT, was charging him like a hungry rhino. But the ball was
perfectly thrown. It drifted right into Floyd's hands over Butler's
outside shoulder. Then Butler slashed with his inside hand and knocked the
ball down again.
and 10, the Cards lined up Empty with a Bunch on the Blindside. The Pats
lined up with 2-3 Dime, with five guys on the line. The Pats sent three,
and Hightower turned the corner and reached out and touch Palmer as he
threw. Floyd was uncovered at the three, with the DBs zoned behind him. He
turned to the endzone, but Ryan and Butler took him out.
and Goal from the one and half, the Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Weak
shotgun. The Pats brought six guys up to the line, three up three down,
with two ILBs behind them. They brought everyone as the Cards ran a little
play action to David. Palmer lofted a fade to Fitzgerald, and the ball was
way too far behind him to catch. But he bent and twisted back, while
horizontal to the ground. He snagged it out of the air. That was an
unfriggin' believable catch. Pats-20. Cards-21.
came out for the biggest test of his career so far. "That goes back
to the preparation part," Jimmy-G said. "We were put in that
situation, and I think the guys around me responded very well. All across
the board, the guys up front, skill guys, defense, special teams, whatever
it may be, everyone stayed calm and reacted well to it." He was down
a point late in the 4th on the road. This is where legends are made.
and 10, the Pats lined up in a 3-Wide Singleback. He ran a very convincing
play action, with his back to the line. But the Cards weren't buying it.
Mr. Jones burst inside of Cannon and got Garoppolo.
and 15, the Pats lineup in a 4-Wide Strong shotgun. Which was not a
formation they used a lot last year, but did use more in the Preseason.
They set up a screen, but White was covered. Garoppolo had to throw the
ball into White's feet.
and 15, the Pats lined up in a trips-left Weak shotgun. Edelman went in
motion behind Hogan and Amendola. White and Bennett stayed in to block.
They faked the screen to Edelman. Amendola was lined up inside. He angled
outside for about seven yards, and then cut inside. Garoppolo pump faked
and then ran outside to the Blindside. Amendola saw Garoppolo take off,
and he popped backwards as both DBs covering him eyed Garoppolo. He broke
open behind them, and Garoppolo hit Amendola with a long pass over
think Jimmy does a good job in the pocket. He has got good vision. He saw
a couple of opportunities to run and then he saw a couple of other
opportunities to slide in the pocket, extend the play," BB said.
"The play you're talking about to Amendola that was one [where he
slide out of the pocket to extend the play]. He had another one to Julian
that got called back but I thought it was another kind of equally
good play where he slid up in the pocket, didn't cross the line of
scrimmage and hit Julian for the first down, but the play was called back
because of a penalty. But I thought he did a good job of that. He doesn't
hang on to the ball. He gets it out of there on time but if things are
covered then he has made good decisions in and out of the pocket on those
extended plays." Amendola got hammered after the catch, but fell
forward over midfield to the 48.
Pats lined up in a Singleback. They gave it to Blount, but the Safety
Jefferson blitzed off the edge, and hammered into him for a heart
and 16, the Pats went 4-Wide Strong shotgun. Garoppolo had time. He looked
for too long to his left, and bounced up a little into the pocket. Then he
spotted Amendola crossing from the right. He hit him just short of the 1st
and 3, Empty. He looked to the right and spotted James White. White was
blanketed by Jefferson high. So Jimmy fired it low. White crunched down
and cradled the ball. The DB dived on top of White, and couldn't believe
that he caught it. He punched at White, which should have been a personal
foul. Then jumped up and freaked out.
and 10 at the Cards-34, the Pats lined up in a 3-Wide Singleback.
Jefferson burst into the backfield again, and tripped Blount. 2nd and 11,
the clock ticked it's way under 6-minutes. The Pats lined up in a 3-Wide
Weak Shotgun. Garoppolo tried to hit Bennett on an Out, but it was low and
in the dirt.
and 11, the Pats stayed in the 3-Wide Singleback. They ran Blount outside.
He got the corner and turned up field. He cutback, right as Jefferson
lowered his head. Blount straight-armed him, as he dived at his legs. He
hopped through his arms with pure power. This allowed him to get an
amazing 1st down, and put all the pressure back on the Cards, as the clock
tick-tocked under 5-minutes.
and 10 at the 22, and the Pats are in a quandary here. Do they go for it
or work the clock and take the field goal. They decided to go for it as
they lined up Empty. They got called for a delay of game.
and 15 at the 27, Pats lined up in a 4-Wide Weak shotgun, so they can run
or pass. Garoppolo dropped looking straight down field. White snuck out of
the backfield. Jimmy knew he was going to White. He snapped back to him,
and lofted a perfect pass in front of him. White had to cutback twice as
the Cards over pursued. Then he danced around until he picked up seven.
called timeout, and I don't understand what all the hubbub was about. Is
this what it has really come down too in the media. Catering to the
dumbest common denominator. The Pats were on a short field, and the Cards
could save some ticks off the clock or some timeouts. Arians chose to burn
the timeouts, which made perfect sense. You can control the clock on
offense, but you can't on defense, and it was a gamble either way. Twitter
is making this world so sad.
and 8, the Pats lined up in a 3-Wide Weak shotgun. They sent Amendola in
motion right. He continued outside after the snap. Garoppolo waggled
behind him and hit him in stride. He turned up field for a few. And the
Cards burned their final timeout.
and 5, the Pats lined up Empty, and motioned White into the backfield.
Garoppolo got pressure from two guys. He used his great feet to make them
miss, and then took off. He got out to the flat and gave a
shimmy-shimmy-shake, but couldn't shake Buchanan to force the Field Goal.
Gostkowski was Money. Pats-23. Cards-21.
many ways the kickoff was the play of the game, and demonstrated how the
Pats won this game. When the Cards had the lead and kicked off, they
dumbly pounded it past the Endzone for a free touchback. No time off the
clock and no danger. When they Pats scored and took the lead back,
Gostkowski pouched it inside the 15. This caused all kinds of trouble for
Arizona, including a penalty that took it back to the Eight.
was clearly one of those games where the special teams were the
difference. "I thought it was really good," BB said about the
game changing play of the special teams. "Our kickoff team, we went
into the game feeling like we had to make some field position plays in the
kicking game. You don't want to put their offense on a short field. If you
can pile a few more yards onto the drive, hopefully it works in your
favor. I know there was a lot of sentiment to eliminate that play, but
those are the kinds of plays that are good strategy plays in football.
we had an opportunity to kick it out of the end zone on the last kickoff,
but with a good field goal kicker, a good offense, good quarterback, we
try to put them on as long a field as we could. Chung did a great job and
went down there and made a play. [Cyrus] Jones, as he did all night, was a
big factor on coverage. I think he was the one that got the holding call.
That was a great situational play and we needed it at that time. In the
end, those yards showed up on the other end of the field." The Cards
special teams looked like a clown show, while the Pats' looked like a
group of professionals. When you win by a point, you can usually look at
specials teams as the factor that decided the game.
Cards came out 1st and 10, at their own 8-yard line with 3:38 left on the
clock and no timeouts. They lined up in a 4-Wide Weak shotgun, and were going
to need a few miracles to win this game. The Pats matched up in a 1-4
Dime. They sent three. Then Long leaped out into the flat, and Hightower
turned and blitzed. Carson hit Brown in the flat and Long ran over and got
in on the tackle with Butler and Chung.
and 2, the Cards lined up in a 4-Wide Strong shotgun. The Pats matched up
with a 1-4 Dime. Ryan was lined up on Fitzgerald in the slot. He blitzed
right into David and they grabbed each other. Carson just said thank you
and hit Fitzgerald calmly for the first. He threw it so fast at him that
Fitzgerald didn't see it until it almost hit him in the facemask. That was
miracle number one.
and 10, the Cards lined up in a 4-Wide Weak shotgun. The Pats matched up
in a 2-3 Dime. They brought four. Hightower had a good rush, but was
washed past Palmer. He threw it to Brown, and Coleman jumped in front of
him to the ball. Brown actually defended that pass, or Coleman had the
and 10, the Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Weak Singleback. The Pats crowded
the line with six guys. They brought three and dropped one. Collins stayed
at the line, and Hightower hopped back and then moved forward cautiously.
He was obviously looking for something that wasn't there. Palmer threw a
beautiful pass to Fitzgerald that was just a pitch and catch between two
35-plus year old veterans playing pitch and catch. Miracle number two.
and 10, the Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Strong shotgun. The Pats backed off
a little and put three guys on the line. They sent five. Collins blitzed
from the second level, and leaped up and tipped the pass.
and 10, the Cards lined up in a Trips-right Strong shotgun. The Pats
matched up with five guys on the LOS, and spread them out wide. They bring
all five. Flowers broke free at Palmer, but it was on the side that David
was sneaking out of the backfield. So he was able to just flick it out to
him. If he had been looking at the other side, Flowers would have had him.
But instead McCourty had to stop David all alone in the flat, and he
shoved him nicely out of bounds short.
and 6, the Cards went 4-Wide Weak shotgun, and motioned Empty. The Pats
milled about, and no one put their hand down. They had four guys on the
LOS, and Hightower was looking to blitz from the outside. They brought
four and the O-line held. Palmer had time to hit Fitzgerald again.
"Larry's a good player," BB said. "He made a lot of good
plays tonight. Stuff you got to cover." Miracle number three.
and 10 at the 34, at the 2-minute warning, and now the Pats needed a three
miracles to win. The Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Weak shotgun. The Pats
brought seven guys up to the line in a Nickel. They bring six, and this
was a great defensive call. They played run all the way. The Cards decided
to work some clock and handed the ball off to David (Johnson). He headed
out to the strongside and three defenders were waiting there for him on
the edge. He stopped and tried to cutback, which ended the run right
their. That defensive play call was miracle number 1.
Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Singleback. The Pats happily went Big. They
lined up in a 3-4 with both safeties a yard behind Collins. Carson dropped
back, in a one-option pass play. He tried to loft it over Coleman, but he
leaped up and caught it out of bounds. The refs call a Hold on the Cards
for miracle number 2.
and 19, the Cards lined up in a 3-Wide Winged shotgun. The Pats matched up
in a 3-3 Nickel, knowing the Cards have to pass. Palmer faked the pass to
his left to David, and then spun to his right and hit Ellington. But
Hightower did a great job fighting off the ORT, and got outside of
Ellington and forced him inside toward Collins and Long, but Sheard got
there first and took him down. That was just great team defense.
and 23, and the Cards were out of field goal range. The Cards lined up in
a 4-Wide Strong shotgun. The Pats dropped into a prevent with three
rushers lined up on the right side of the Cards' O-line. The Pats called
timeout. 3rd and 23 again, the Cards lined up in the same formation. The
Pats matched up in a similar scheme, but they brought Hightower up to the
line on the blindside. They brought four. Hightower and Flowers had good
rushes. But Palmer had time and threw to Brown. He was popped down at the
29. The Cards rushed out to kick the field goal as the clock tick-tocked.
BB waited 20-seconds to call a timeout.
they would've run right out and lined up to kick it, then I don't think I
would've taken the timeout," BB said. "Generally, I don't think
you want to go out and line up your field goal team, and get it all set,
and then make your kicker wait 20 seconds to kick it. I mean you could
theoretically, but most kickers don't like that. I don't really think
that's the way to go, personally.
they came out there, that's what I thought they were going to do. Run
right out and kick because it was fourth down. Then, the holder wasn't
even down. The kicker was 10 yards off to the side warming up. It looked
like they were going to bleed it down. I thought we could save maybe 20
seconds or so in the 40 second clock. Somewhere in there. I thought we'd
be able to save that. Obviously, if the kick was no good, we're kneeling
anyways. It wouldn't make any difference. That would have only helped us
if the kick had been good."
and 5 at the 29, the Cards lined up to attempt a 47-yard field goal. The
snap was low and outside. The holder had to reach back and pin it to the
ground. This disrupted the kicker mentally. He twisted too far to his
right, and hooked right, for miracle number 3.
Pats held on just enough. "We knew that they used all of their
timeouts, so it was about trying to get a stop," McCourty said.
"There were a couple plays we felt we could of ended it earlier. The
holding penalty was huge to knock them out of field goal range. Once you
get to that point, every yard matters. Bill (Belichick) always tells us
the percentage of how far kickers are kicking. At the end of the day, all
of the kickers in the NFL are pretty good. You never know what’s going
to happen. We just try to put as much pressure as possible on him and hope
he misses at the end. At the end of the game, you either win or lose with
one kick." Then the Cards clown show special teams came out and lost
Pats stood up and had a miracle win: without their two best players, on
the road, with a young QB who never started a game, with two backup
O-tackles, and two rookies who started on the O-line.
I'm really proud of our team here tonight," BB said. "I thought
we got great effort from all three phases, but a good complimentary game.
These guys worked really hard during the week. There was a lot of
preparation in this game: meetings, walkthroughs. Obviously practice and
film study. The Cardinals are a tough team to get ready for and these guys
really worked hard and we had a grinding week.
they came down here and played a tough, physical football game against a
good team. We were just able to make a couple more plays than the
Cardinals. There's obviously some things we need to clean up and work on.
It's good to come down here and win. It's good to go on the road, play
well as a team, and get contributions from all three phases.
big point of the game was the kickoff. Making the tackle down there in the
Fifteen. Getting the penalty. The position ended up being a real big
factor there, I'm sure on the final kick. Really good plays on special
teams, defensively. It's a good offensive unit that we competed hard
against and they made some plays."
the end this was a miracle victory with difficulties than you can count.
They were 3,000 miles from home: without the GOAT, without the Gronk,
without the starting OLT, and with a QB having his first career NFL start.
"Well, we had one false start. Too many penalties," thanks Bill.
"But look, they competed hard. It's a good defense. They've got some
good players. We blocked them and sometimes, we had trouble blocking them,
but we competed hard and we made enough plays. We were able to control the
ball at times. At other times, not so well.
those guys, they fought them all the way and we fought them all the way in
all three phases. I thought we had a great effort from all our players and
they played with a lot of toughness. It's a loud stadium, on the road, a
good team. A Super Bowl caliber team, at least that's what they're talking
about. It was a good effort to come down here and win." I told you
Jimmy-G reminded me of Aaron Rogers from before he was drafted, and
me if you'd like a question blogged:
dogs on Main St howl Because they understand.