Now THAT is how you achieve a lifetime of sustained peak performance.
To quote Gil Santos, "Tom Brady you are Tom Terrific!" Hell of a comeback by our boys here. Life has a way of sorting itself out. Water finds its level. Old people die. (Damnit, Blue was old) And Tom wins football games. So please don't beat yourself up over this thing, Houston, its just not your fault.
I don't even have the words to describe Tom any more. The ice water in his veins has ice water in its veins. It's a joke. I was sitting in a room with 15 people when the Texans faced fourth and inches from our red area with 2+ min left. And everyone room said out loud if you kick this field goal you lose this game. One billion times out of a billion. What other quarterbacks can you say that about? You don't give Tommy the ball if he can beat you. I don't know how many times he's going to have to do it before people stop giving him the chance, but like blacksmith Will Turner I hope every opponent has to be reminded of this at least once more before they get it right.
I have to start with Bradin Cooks. I've been calling him DinDin, I've been calling him Cookie, and I've been calling him Chef lately. I can't decide on one yet, but I give you my world I'll settle on a nickname soon. After I spent my feature post last week ranting and raving about how I needed more from him he shut me the hell up. Going for 5 catches, 131 yards, 2 tuddies, including the game winner, and a 2 pt conversion will do that for ya.
BUT, until the second half I was ready to crush him again. He had 2 grabs for about 60, with a 44 yard bomb on the opening series. All great stuff, but more of the same. Gets open on one deep route per game and doesn't contribute otherwise. This explosion was massive for a couple reasons. Not only did it get us the win, but also, and more importantly, I think its going to do wonders for his confidence. Brady knows he can trust Chef when it matters most. DinDin knows he has a role on this team and we need him to win. Cookie is on the same page with Tom on option routes. All those things point to this becoming the fruitful relationship I always hoped it would be, like the one I currently have with Amazon Prime or hope to have with Allison Brie.
How's that groin injury on Gronk doing?? Is he going into surgery this week?? Try 8 catches for 89 and a tuddy on for size. We all know how Gronk looked out there. Say it with me. PLIABLE. The hulking tight end was running all the routes, and came up huge for us all day. I was ready to execute him when he fumbled after a sweet pass up the left sideline. That was the point in the game where it felt like we were trying to give it away. Luckily, the ball bounced out of bounds, no harm no foul, but a few more of those and he will be wearing the Stevan Ridley cone of shame on the sideline.
For me, Gronk's most impressive play of the game came on the final drive. After we took a bunk holding penalty and were facing an early third and long, Tom found Gronk over the middle for about 11 of the 12 we needed. Before that snap I just wanted a manageable fourth down. I was fine with that completion leaving me fourth and short. But Gronk stayed on his feet and bullied his way forward to get the extra yards and the first. With our inability to grab short yardage so far (more on that later) this is the type of effort play that wins games. It's contagious. Other guys see that Gronk hasn't quit. He's out there fighting, tearing himself to pieces, CLAWING for that inch. It got the drive rolling. Gronk is one of the toughest tackles in the league. He carries more bodies across the field than Private Desmond Doss. When he wants yards he usually gets them, and boy did we need them right there.
For you cinephiles out there, you'll know that Universal Studios is launching their big Dark Universe series, rebooting a bunch of horror titles and having them all coexist. The Mummy with Tom Cruise was the first out of the gate. And now it appears Chris Hogan has a big pay day coming his way. Johnny Depp is out and Hoags is in for the lead role in The Invisible Man.
I've never seen anyone get nude like this guy. It's incredible. He's not the fastest WR in the league. He's not the best route runner. But god damn does he get open. Don't ever change Hoags, no matter how many dirty looks you get from middle aged house wives. We're going streaking. We're going up the quad to the gymnasium. And no one's doing it but you.
Quite game for the running backs. I'm sad that DIDI is just dead. He has value, and he's one hundo p an above average player who is really only keeping our running back position #deep. But the man who inspired this tweet
To think, I got traded for #DionLewis back in 2013.... someone needs to be fired for that. He a beast! #NFL#Patriots
Gilly is a quality signing and I think he will have double digit touchdowns, but if he can't figure out how to get 1 yard on third down and he can kindly leave. Kindly. Leave.
The offensive line had a tough task on their hands this Sunday. I don't want that to be ignored. That's probably the best defensive front we'll face all season. Solder looked like he wasn't 100 percent, and Cannon was too hurt to play. Not an ideal situation. That being said, I'm gonna need these guys to get their act together. JJ Watt, Clowney, and Mercilus spent more time behind the enemy's line than Owen Wilson. On the fumble that got returned for a touchdown (which could have been a pick, but thank god it wasn't because I don't need that on Tom's resume while I'm trying to win a GD MVP over here) Solder got turned around so hard I thought he was attempting to disapparate. Scar has always been a miracle worker with that group, so I have faith. But figure it out.
The D line wasn't much better. The defense as a whole left a lot to be desired, so no one is safe, but it starts with the guys up front. My BOY Trey Flowers continues to be a lone bright spot, and his razorback partner in crime Deatrich Wise has been more than we could have hoped for this year. It was his relentless pressure on Watson, even after chipping the TE, that led to the Gilmore pick. Malcom Brown has been fine, and Adam Butler is a good story and a better player, but where the F is Alan Branch?? He only played 21 snaps, the lowest on the line but up from his pathetic 6 last week. The thing is I don't need him to be a pro bowler. I need to him to two gap and eat space like he clearly ate Twinkies all off season. It called an EXTENSION not an EXEMPTION, so I'd appreciate you returning our investment with some pressure up the middle. Please and thanks.
The secondary got lit up yet again, which is giving me PTSD from some of those beginning of the decade teams. Dev has looked out of place multiple times this season and I hold him personally responsible for 3 tuddies this year just off the top of my head. Chung saw himself get replaced by Harmon on multiple plays this week after a few struggles last week. Malcolm returned to the starting role and played every single snap. I saw a few passes get completed on him but what I loved was the fight. He was close to the receiver when they were caught, not the 6 yards away he has been lately. And he was firing guys to the ground hard after the catch. That's the scrappy CB I know and love. Gilmore had a big interception, our first on the season, to set up a score. Granted the pick was delivered into his hands via messenger service with a receipt confirmation by Watson, just to make sure he got it, but turnovers are turnovers. I'll take one whenever I can get it, especially if its raspberry with a sugared crust.
At linebacker I'm still willing to withhold judgement until the one true king returns. High is a game changer in a hundred different ways, and we are a different defense with him in the game. Plain and simple. Kyle Van Noy played every snap, and his three year extension is making more sense now. The coaching staff clearly loves him. I'm not totally sure why? Perhaps Bill loves his toast burnt, so the sight of Van Noy chasing D'onta Foreman up the sideline for 31 yards reminds him of breakfast. I feel like that would just make me hungry, but to each his own. Expect a lot of Van Noy until McCllelan is back off of IR and High is healthy. Roberts seems to have positioned himself in the number two role, and I can live with that. He's still a hammer against the run.
The David Harris mystery continues to blow my mind. Only 4 snaps yesterday and not a word about it. Not from the team (expected) or Mike Reiss (unexpected.) Hey David, the New England Patriots request the honor of your presence at the victory over the Panthers Sunday, the first of October, Two thousand and seventeen at one o'clock in the afternoon, at One Patriot Place, Gillette Stadium, Foxborough Massachusetts. Reception and "awwwwweeee yeeeeaaaa!" to follow. RSVP
Final thoughts on the Texans. Watson appears better than I thought he would be in the pros. He made some big time throws on some very questionable decisions, but he pulled them off. Plus it's awesome seeing all those ex-Patriots out there. Larry Izzo just loves special teams. How can you not love him?? Tea-Pot coached his ass off before he (with Watson's help) royally screwed the pooch on that time out at the end of the game. And I cant tell you how much I love that JJ Watt still doesn't have a sack of Brady after Tommy completed that no-look grenade lob to Gronk while hovering one inch off the ground like David Blaine.