The most up-to-date content on the planet
this just in
 RSS
WEEI » This Just In » Blount, Talib help Pats hold on against Falcons
Mon, 09/30/2013 - 12:02am  

Blount, Talib help Pats hold on against Falcons

The Patriots burst out to a 30-13 lead and held on down the stretch to come away with a 30-23 win over the Falcons Sunday night in Atlanta.

The late flurry from the Falcons might overshadow a superior defensive effort for the first three-plus quarters from New England, which managed to hold Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and Roddy White in check for most of the night. Their work helped the Patriots build a 17-point second half lead, but New England had to sweat it out down the stretch. However, when Aqib Talib knocked away a pass for White in the end zone with less than a minute to go, the victory was secure.

On the other side of the ball, Tom Brady went 20-for-31 for 316 yards and two touchdowns. Meanwhile, Matt Ryan was 34-for-54 for 421 yards with two touchdowns and one pick.

New England moved to 4-0 with the win, the third time the Patriots have started a season with four straight wins out of the gate under Bill Belichick. The other two years — 2004 and 2007 — ended with New England making a trip to the Super Bowl.

Here are a few quick notes on the game:

WHAT WENT RIGHT

• The Patriots were able to contain Jones most of the night, thanks almost entirely to the work of Talib. It was exclusive, but Talib played a sizable role in leaving one of the league’s best receivers completely ineffective through much of the evening. Jones had two catches for six yards in the first half, and Talib came away with his fourth pick of the year on a ball midway through the fourth quarter. Jones ended up with 13 catches for 108 yards — with 49 of them coming on a great play late in the fourth quarter — but wasn’t much of a factor throughout the evening.

• The New England running game was tremendous, as the Patriots were able to consistently move the chains and get good yardage throughout the first half. On New England’s first touchdown drive of the night — a series that encompassed the end of the first quarter and start of the second quarter — 10 of the 12 plays were runs, with Stevan Ridley and Brandon Bolden picking up some good, between-the-tackles yardage on the 75-yard drive. (The series ended with a pass from Brady to Matthew Mulligan to give the Patriots a 7-3 lead — the first touchdown pass to a tight end this season for New England.) New England was able to keep that going in the second half when LeGarrette Blount tacked on a 46-yard touchdown run at the start of the fourth quarter to give the Patriots a 10-point lead. Blount had 64 rushing yards and Ridley added 53.

• The offensive highlight of the night came in the second quarter on a Brady pass to Kenbrell Thompkins that went for 49 yards down the sideline, a heave from Brady that saw Thompkins go up and fight for the ball against the Atlanta defenders who were in coverage. It was the longest pass play of the season for the Patriots, besting the 39-yard touchdown pass to Aaron Dobson in Week 2 against the Jets. That series ended with a 48-yard field goal from Stephen Gostkowski that made it 10-3 with 2:57 remaining in the first half. All in all, while Dobson saw his night cut short with a neck injury — more on that later — Thompkins had a big night, finishing with 11 catches for 127 yards and a touchdown in the win.

WHAT WENT WRONG

• While the Patriots — and Talib — did an excellent job shutting down Jones, they weren’t so lucky when it came to slowing down Tony Gonzalez. The veteran tight end had seven catches in the early going, including the second-quarter touchdown grab that tied the game at 10 just before the half. He finished the night with 14 catches for 149 yards and two touchdowns. He’s no longer the week-to-week offensive threat he once was, but Gonzalez proved that he can still bring it with the best of them when his quarterback needs his help.

• New England made a point of playing three complete games over their first three contests, shutting out their opponents in the fourth quarter over all three of their first three games. The Patriots were sluggish on offense and defense in the final frame against the Falcons, as Brady fumbled a key fourth-down snap and the defense yielded 13 fourth-quarter points. Not the sort of way you want to finish.

• The Patriots suffered a serious injury when defensive lineman Vince Wilfork was carted off in the first quarter after he went down with a right ankle injury. New England went with Joe Vellano in his place for much of the rest of the evening. If the All-Pro is out for any extended stretch, it would be a big blow to a New England defense that is led by the veteran Wilfork. The Patriots also lost running back Brandon Bolden with a knee injury in the first half, but he returned for the second half. And New England lost Dobson late in the third quarter when he got cracked in the end zone when diving for a ball that would have been a touchdown — the rookie receiver appeared to get hit, and left the field for the locker room shortly after the play went down. (It was later announced that he was questionable to return.)




Audio On Demand

Mike Reiss with Dale, Hol…

Mike Reiss with Dale, Holley and Thornton

Dale, Michael and Jerry dig into the details of this draft for the Patriots with ESPN's Mike Reiss.

NFL SUNDAY with Mike Giardi and Chris Price -- Roger Goodell is maddening! -- 5-1-16

Giardi and Price discuss the Tom Brady appeal getting overturned and Roger Goodell's victory tour. The guys can't believe the victory lap and some of his behavior. The more you listen to him, the more frustrating his behavior becomes.

NFL SUNDAY with Mike Giardi and Chris Price -- A look at the AFC East post NFL Draft -- 5-1-16

Giardi and Price break down how the teams in the AFC East altered their futures after the NFL Draft weekend.

Abdel Nader - 7/17

Abdel Nader - 7/17

Sam Packard is joined by Celtics 2nd Round draft pick Abdel Nader to discuss his path to the the NBA and how he plans to improve his game. Sam then talks to Player Development Coach Nick Friedman from Elite Skills Training, the pre-Draft camp Nader attended. Friedman also gives his opinion on the Celtics performance at summer league and the development of Jaylen Brown.

Isaiah Thomas, Celtics PG joins OMF, 6-30-16

Isaiah Thomas talks to Glenn and Lou about why he loves Boston, the NBA Money Bump, oh, and some Durant guy

Danny Ainge, Celtics General Manager and President of Basketball joins OMF, 6-24-16

Danny Ainge joins Glenn and Christian to explain the Celtics draft process; and he also discusses the trade rumors that permeated the night.

Brad Ziegler Player of th…

Brad Ziegler Player of the Game Interview

Joe Castiglione & Tim Neverett talked to the new Sox reliever, who got his first save for the team today against the Twins.

7-22 Red Sox Review with Christian Arcand

Christian recaps the Sox 2-1 loss to the Twins. Eduardo Rodriguez had a good showing tonight but couldn't get the run support needed to secure a W. Thoughts on all of that as well as your calls on Red Sox Review.

Steven Wright joins OMF, 7-22-16

Red Sox Starting Pitcher Steven Wright joins Glenn, John Tomase, and Tom Caron to discuss pitching the knuckler in adverse conditions, his journey through MLB, and his All-Star experience.

ESPN hockey writer Joe Mc…

ESPN hockey writer Joe McDonald joins Ken Laird to talk #Bruins free agency 7-2-16

Joey Mac joins Ken Laird on his Saturday show to discuss the David Backes addition and Loui Eriksson departure in NHL free agency

SUNDAY SKATE with DJ Bean and Pete Blackburn -- A look toward the future for the Bruins -- 4-17-16

DJ and Pete continue to assess the season that was for the Bruins and look toward the future for the franchise and how they can improve.

SUNDAY SKATE with WEEI's DJ Bean and Uproxx's Pete Blackburn -- They got what they wanted...Claude Julien is staying in Boston -- 4-17-16

DJ and Pete are together for the final Sunday Skate of the season. They get into their overall thoughts on the season, the Bruins keeping Claude Julien on as head coach and the end-of-season press conferences last week. They discuss the rebuild process, what the Bruins need and how they can obtain it. Plenty of callers have their own theories and opinions on all of these topics as well.

D&C - DJ Gary Tanguay hit…

D&C - DJ Gary Tanguay hits the post of soft rock favorites 7-22-16

Former rock jock Gary Tanguay channels his radio past to attempt to "hit the post" of several classic soft rock favorites as Minihane eggs him on.

D&C - Who would be the #RedSox pitcher in a one-game Wild Card? 7-22-16

Somewhat reluctantly, Kirk and Gary take calls on who would start a one-game playoff for the Red Sox right now between Steven Wright, Rick Porcello and David Price

D&C - Kama Sutra talk, Kirk vs. Gary attractiveness 7-22-16

The 8am hour stays off the rails with Kirk and Gary discussing Ken the producer's sex life and how attractive women find them

Steven Wright joins OMF, …

Steven Wright joins OMF, 7-22-16

Red Sox Starting Pitcher Steven Wright joins Glenn, John Tomase, and Tom Caron to discuss pitching the knuckler in adverse conditions, his journey through MLB, and his All-Star experience.

OMF on Ortiz, PED's and the HOF, 7-22-16

Acronyms abound, as Glenn, John Tomase, and Tom Caron discuss the MLB Hall of Fame, and PED's. Also, is David Ortiz a Hall of Famer?

Clay Buchholz is the odd-man-out, 7-22-16

Glenn, John Tomase, and Tom Caron discuss Clay Buchholz' current state of limbo.

Less than a week until th…

Less than a week until the Patriots start another pre-season

With less than a week before camp opens up, we discuss some Patriots on a day that just feels like NFL training camp weather.

Sox keep chugging, offense on fire, no thanks to John Farrell?

We talk Sox on a hot summer Friday, and how John Farrell is in a no-win situation with some fans despite the team's performance.

Dale and Holley's Four at Four - Best NFL Coach Rants Edition 07-22-16

In honor of the passing of coach Dennis Green, we present four of the best NFL Coaching rants (during press conferences) of all time.

Ep. 24: Lenny Clarke

Ep. 24: Lenny Clarke

Kirk Minihane is joined by Boston comedy legend Lenny Clarke. If you are a fan of stand up comedy this is the podcast for you. Kirk and Lenny talk about Carlin, Pryor, Williams, Murphy and many more.

Ep. 23: Robert Lipsyte

Kirk Minihane is joined by former ESPN ombudsman and New York Times writer Robert Lipsyte. Kirk and Robert discuss the current state of ESPN and how Robert feels he did in his role as ombudsman. They both criticize ESPN for the lack of journalism at ESPN and look at some of the curious decisions the world wide leader has made in the past few years.

Ep. 22: Lenny Dykstra

Kirk Minihane is joined by Lenny Dykstra to talk about his book, his life pleasing older women, and Lenny tries to avoid his past issues with money. This is one explosive episode.

The Hot Tag - Uncle Buck …

The Hot Tag - Uncle Buck Talks WWE Draft

Uncle Buck breaks down the WWE Draft and the new rosters for Monday Night Raw and Smackdown Live.

Teeing Off With Ben Charleston. The Open Championship Recap

This week we look back at the Open Championship.

Fantasy Football Podcast July 22nd Edition:

Jim Hackett and Pete Davidson are back right on time for the start of the NFL and Fantasy Football pre-draft season. Topics of the day include some news around the league centering on the suspension of Le’Veon Bell, bad news swirling around Ezekiel Elliot and the passing of Coach Dennis Green. Then it’s into the fun stuff featuring conversation about the Patriots Offense with the additions of Martellus Bennett and Chris Hogan and a first look at the Top 12 Wide Receivers heading into Training Camp. It’s time to gear up for Fantasy Football people, giddy up!

D&C - Michael Holley vs. …

D&C - Michael Holley vs. Gerry Callahan on the Michael Brown shooting & relevance 7-15-16

After a few callers argue with Kirk and Gerry about racial profiling in America, the guys get to WEEI's Michael Holley disagreeing with Callahan on the inclusion of Michael Brown into recent examples of tragic deaths of blacks in America.

More from this show

OMF - Red Sox possibly de…

OMF - Red Sox possibly dealing for a Pitcher? 7-19-16

Glenn, Lou, and Christian examine the latest Pitcher rumored to be on the Sox' radar.

More from this show

Lay down your arms, defla…

Lay down your arms, deflategate is over. Complete reaction and analysis

Dale, Michael and Jerry talk about the end of it all... Tom Brady will not seek a higher appeal of the US District Court's decision.

More from this show

D&C - Melania Trump defen…

D&C - Melania Trump defense strategy after her plagiarized speech 7-19-16

Gerry, Mut and Kirk dig back into the Melania Trump speech on night one of the RNC and discuss how the Trump team will and should handle things going forward.

More from this show

ESPN Analyst, Stephen A S…

ESPN Analyst, Stephen A Smith Explains Himself 7-15-2016

ESPN analyst, Stephen A. Smith joins to the show to defend his comments that Tom Brady shouldn’t be fighting to the Supreme Court. Glenn, Lou, and Christian demand Stephen explain his reasoning behind calling Brady, “uppity.”

More from this show

News & Analysis