Of Brady’s targets, who stood out the most Monday night? Eight different receivers, running backs and tight ends had at least one reception, but who was the offense’s most deadly weapon?
Wes Welker again seemed to be Brady’s favorite target, reeling in eight receptions and scoring two touchdowns. Welker’s most impressive play of the night was his 99-yard reception after the Patriots stopped the Dolphins on a goal-line stand. Welker made the catch just shy of the Patriots’ 20-yard line, then outran and shoved Dolphins’ cornerback Benny Sapp to the turf en route to his second touchdown of the game.
Although he didn’t go for six, Deion Branch had seven receptions and the third most receiving yards with 93, adding to the laundry list of woes for the Dolphins defense.
Now in his sophomore season, Aaron Hernandez caught seven of Brady’s passes for 103 yards and a touchdown. Hernandez’s 1-yard reception put the Patriots up by 11 points in the third quarter while he added the finishing touches by “making it rain” in the end zone.
Fellow sophomore Rob Gronkowski had six receptions for 86 yards and a touchdown. For a stretch during the first half, it seemed like Gronkowski was invisible to the defense, including the drive he concluded with a 10-yard completion to take the first lead of the game.