Patriots Live Blog: Tom Brady’s Three Touchdown Passes Propel Patriots to 38-20 Victory Against Eagles

Patriots Live Blog: Tom Brady's Three Touchdown Passes Propel Patriots to 38-20 Victory Against Eagles

Final, Patriots 38-20: The Patriots improved to 8-3 with the whooping they placed on the Eagles, and they've maintained their two-game lead in the AFC East.

Now, it's onto the Colts, who will bring their 0-11 record to Gillette Stadium next Sunday at 1 p.m. Consider it a glorified bye week.

Fourth quarter, 0:32, Patriots 38-20: The Eagles added a garbage-time touchdown with Vince Young's one-yard toss to Jason Avant. And now, amazingly, Young has 400 passing yards.

File this one under the games in which the Patriots gave up a ton of statistics on defense but played better than the numbers will show. Same thing happened against Miami, San Diego and Oakland earlier this season.

Fourth quarter, 5:10, Patriots 38-13: That didn't last very long. After a three-and-out and an Eagles timeout, the Patriots only erased about a minute and a half of clock.

Fourth quarter, 6:32, Patriots 38-13: Brian Hoyer has replaced Tom Brady, and Marcus Cannon is in at right tackle for Nate Solder. Shane Vereen is also in, but he started getting work earlier in the half.

Fourth quarter, 6:54, Patriots 38-13: When the fans are booing 18-yard punts, you know things have gotten bad for the home team. The fans who have remained at the Linc have been mercilessly booing the Eagles after every bad play, which means there will be a lot of soar throats at the work place in Philly on Monday.

Antwaun Molden left the game after taking a high hit and looking woozy. He was replaced by Sterling Moore, and Sergio Brown checked in at safety.

This game was pretty exciting in the first half. Now, not so much.

Fourth quarter, 8:35, Patriots 38-13: Even Rob Gronkowski's half-effort spikes kill the grass. Gronkowski hauled in his 11th touchdown of the season and his sixth in the last four games on a perfect post route in the left seam, and Tom Brady threw a beautifully precise pass between two defenders who were playing high-low on Gronkowski.

That drive killed a half quarter, and this thing is over. The Patriots played a heck of a game in Philadelphia. The offense has been nearly flawless since some early hiccups, and the defense rebounded, though it has definitely benefited from Philly's mistakes (Vince Young's poor throws, DeSean Jackson's case of the drops).

I didn't really know what to expect with this game, but I am thoroughly impressed by the blowout victory.

Third quarter, 1:02, Patriots 31-13: The Eagles stalled at midfield, and Julian Edelman got to Vince Young again. Edelman tackled Young in the open field shy of the goal line a couple series ago, and he just drilled Young after he got rid of the pass on third down.

If Edelman played for USC in 2005, the Trojans might have had an answer for the Texas quarterback.

Third quarter, 3:20, Patriots 31-13: Well, if DeSean Jackson isn't going to help his squad on special teams, either, he's of very little use. Jackson allowed Zoltan Mesko's punt to bounce after waving for a fair catch, and it took a big Patriots hop. The punt traveled 55 yards to the Philly 12, so that and the 30 yards of offense changed the field by 86 yards since the Eagles failed on fourth down.

Third quarter, 6:27, Patriots 31-13: Kyle Arrington has had a phenomenal game since giving up that big gain to Riley Cooper. Arrington knocked out Jason Avant with a perfectly clean hit on the Eagles' last possession, and he covered Brent Celek all the way to the back corner of the end zone on a fourth-down stop.

Vince Young has been horrendously bad since the third possession. He's leading his receivers into some ugly areas, getting them hit hard and not allowing them to run with the ball after the catch in space. And those are just on his completions. Let's not even get into the misses.

James Ihedigbo briefly left the field after suffering an injury, which might have been his shoulder again. The Patriots called a timeout after he left the field so he could get back in the huddle for the fourth-down play. He didn't miss a snap.

The Patriots take over at their own 2.

Third quarter, 11:27, Patriots 31-13: The Patriots kept the pressure on the Eagles by going no-huddle to start the second half, and Tom Brady hit Wes Welker for his second touchdown of the game, a nine-yarder on another out-route to the left side. Welker beat Joselio Hanson, who isn't having a great game in a bigger role than he's accustomed to having. The play was reviewed, but there was nothing there to overturn it.

That was too easy for the Patriots. Remember when they gutted it out through four third-down conversions in their initial touchdown drive? Well, they ran eight plays on that drive and never got to third down. In fact, they only had three second downs, so their efficiency was on point.

Cullen Jenkins returned to the field for the Eagles on that series.

Third quarter, 12:00, Patriots 24-13: Nate Solder has replaced Sebastian Vollmer at right tackle. The team hasn't said anything about Vollmer, but he was looking at his foot late in the second quarter. (Update: The Patriots announced Vollmer suffered an ankle injury, and his return is questionable.)

Third quarter, 14:55, Patriots 24-13: Danny Woodhead returned the kickoff to the New England 31, and the Pats will start things off in the second half. I've gotta say, Woodhead was an elite kick returner in Madden 11 (yeah, last year's version), but the Patriots have struggled to find a big-play threat at that position this season. The fact that Taylor Price lost that job very early in the season was an indication that he had started to fall out of favor with the coaches.

Halftime, Patriots 24-13: The Patriots are halfway home to an 8-3 record after a tremendous recovery in Philly. The Eagles opened up a 10-0 lead in less than seven minutes, but Tom Brady, BenJarvus Green-Ellis and the offense found their stride despite surrendering a lot of pressure in Brady's face. Brady has completed 13 of 20 passes for 213 yards and a touchdown through two quarters.

However, Green-Ellis only had one carry for one yard (a touchdown) since the Patriots' second offensive possession. I'd attribute that to the no-huddle pace they started to set as they saw the Eagles struggling to defend it.

Still, Brady has taken a beating so far, so I wouldn't be surprised to see Green-Ellis get a heavier workload out of the gate in the second half.

Second quarter, 0:51, Patriots 24-13: The Patriots answered the Eagles' field goal with a 45-yarder from Stephen Gostkowski, but Tom Brady wasn't too happy with three consecutive incompletions to end the drive.

Still, Brady had two completions for 23 yards and two runs for 19 yards to set up the score.

Second quarter, 2:11, Patriots 21-13: DeSean Jackson dropped a touchdown pass on third down, as he clearly took his eyes off the ball and stared at Tracy White in the zone. Again, just more reasons why I'd never give Jackson a big-money contract to play for the team I don't own. Alex Henery's 22-yard field goal ended the Patriots' run of 21 consecutive points, but Tom Brady will have plenty of time and three timeouts to put more points on the board before the half.

The Eagles' offense to this point has consisted of big plays and big mistakes. That's par for the course this season with that team, and there's not much room for error when they do that against New England.

Second quarter, 7:09, Patriots 21-10: Jeesh, the Eagles know how to blow an assignment, huh? Tom Brady hit Wes Welker for a 41-yard touchdown after a big-time miscue in the secondary, and Welker wasn't anywhere close to being touched.

Cornerback Joselio Hanson and safety Nate Allen bit on the play-action, which led to Welker running free up the left seam. Hanson could afford to bite because he had Allen over the top, but Allen's miscue was atrocious. Just horrendous field awareness on his part. The lack of discipline from this team is amazing.

The Eagles' offense will look for a first down for the first time in three series. Of their last seven plays in that stretch, two have gone for negative yards, one was an incompletion and one was intercepted.

Cullen Jenkins has had a great game, but he left with a thumb injury after hitting it on a teammate's helmet.

Second quarter, 8:54, Patriots 14-10: It's hard to believe this game is merely 21 minutes old because of how much has already happened. The Eagles went three-and-out for the second time in three possessions, and they haven't registered a first down in their last three series.

Vince Young made a horrendous third-down throw to DeSean Jackson to make way for the punt.

Great first-down tackle from Rob Ninkovich, who had to keep contain with LeSean McCoy as he tried to shake away. McCoy lost four yards on the play, and he's been held to five yards on four carries. That's good stuff right there.

Second quarter, 10:20, Patriots 14-10: More wows, as the inconsistencies continue for the Patriots. Tom Brady, who is livid on the bench, missed Wes Welker on a potential third-down conversion, and Stephen Gostkowski pushed a 39-yard field goal to the right. As impressive as the Patriots have looked over the last 10 minutes, they just let the Eagles off the hook there.

The Pats got the ball after Antwaun Molden intercepted a deep pass down the left sideline for DeSean Jackson, who had a step but couldn't haul in the underthrown ball. There was some incidental contact between Jackson and Molden, but there was no reason to throw a flag.

Jackson is one of the few receivers who can't be overthrown, and it takes time for a quarterback to develop that type of trust with a player of that caliber. Hence, Vince Young, who is making his second start, couldn't get the ball downfield the way Michael Vick could have.

Second quarter, 13:12, Patriots 14-10: Shades of Detroit from Deion Branch on that series. Branch and Tom Brady improvised on third-and-13, and Brady hit Branch up the left sideline, where he gained 63 yards and took it to the 1-yard line after a couple of nice cuts. BenJarvus Green-Ellis punched it in on the next play after Sebastian Vollmer opened the hole and Donald Thomas — lining up at fullback because Dan Connolly is out and Ryan Wendell is playing center — cleaned it out even more.

Brady was sacked on the first play of the series when Mike Patterson split Brian Waters and Sebastian Vollmer, and it happened due to miscommunication, either before or after the snap. Waters shook the double team to take on a linebacker who rushed late, and Vollmer couldn't keep Patterson contained. It was Vollmer's responsibility, but I wonder where the communication broke.

The Chad Ochocinco jokes have begun again, too, after Tiquan Underwood missed a sure touchdown catch due to a drop. It happened just before Branch's big gain, so Underwood owes him a Christmas card.

Second quarter, 14:47, Eagles 10-7: The Eagles went three-and-out, and the Patriots can hand an assist to the officials for missing a facemask on Rob Ninkovich during his sack of Vince Young. The Pats take over at their 39 after Julian Edelman's 14-yard punt return. He can be so tough to tackle in that phase of the game.

First quarter, 1:27, Eagles 10-7: That was a heck of a drive from the New England offense, which cut into Philly's lead with a four-yard touchdown run from BenJarvus Green-Ellis. Credit Brian Waters for opening the hole, and Ryan Wendell deserves a nod for coming off a double-team to chip a would-be tackler out of Green-Ellis' way. Nice job all around there.

The Patriots converted four third downs on that series, which is very impressive.

Green-Ellis, who looks really strong, especially out of his cuts, has 42 yards on 10 carries so far. He's been a major part of the game plan to this point.

Rob Gronkowski got knocked pretty good in the ribs by safety Kurt Coleman and left the field for a play.

Nnamdi Asomugha made a late appearance on that drive, but he might have only been on the field for a play or three. That was his only action to this point.

For what it's worth, Julian Edelman and Tiquan Underwood have been on the field with the offense, but I haven't seen Taylor Price yet.

First quarter, 8:23, Eagles 10-0: And the deficit grows. Alex Henery kicked a 43-yard field goal to give the Eagles two scores on two drives, and this one was keyed by DeSean Jackson's 44-yard reception past Antwaun Molden, who didn't have any safety help on the play. The drive then stalled due to a series of inaccurate throws and drops.

Tom Brady, who is not wearing the tendinitis band, has to give his team some life here.

First quarter, 10:36, Eagles 7-0: Tom Brady took a beating on the Patriots' first offensive series, and the Pats had to punt. Brady was hit three times, and the big one came when Logan Mankins got abused by Cullen Jenkins in a simple one-on-one assignment.

After re-watching the Eagles' touchdown, Vince Wilfork was blown out of his gap on a double team that allowed LeSean McCoy to break through the line. That's two captains with bad plays on the first two series of the game.

The positive? DeSean Jackson called for a fair catch on the punt, and the Eagles start at their 20.

First quarter, 12:43, Eagles 7-0: On Friday, Bill Belichick said Eagles running back LeSean McCoy "might be better" than former Philly great Brian Westbrook, and McCoy just capped the Eagles' first drive with a two-yard touchdown run.

That was easy for Philly. Tight end Brent Celek beat James Ihedigbo for a 22-yard reception on the first play, and wide receiver Riley Cooper — who didn't have a catch this season until a five-reception performance last week — beat Kyle Arrington for a 58-yard gain. Arrington appeared to let up midway through Cooper's route and lost a step.

Now, it's Tom Brady's turn.

First quarter, 14:56, 0-0: Vince Young and the Eagles start the opening drive at their own 16 after the kickoff.

4:14 p.m.: The Eagles won the coin toss and will receive the opening kickoff.

4:07 p.m.: The Jets survived to hand the Bills their fourth consecutive loss, and the Patriots' regular-season finale loses more of its luster every week. The Jets improved to 6-5 and remain two games behind the Patriots in the loss column. The Bills fell to 5-6 and have lost both of their meetings with the Jets. The AFC East's three-team race has dwindled down to the Patriots and Jets once again.

3:01 p.m.: Here's a further breakdown of the Patriots' inactive list.

2:54 p.m.: Quarterback Michael Vick has been officially ruled out along with wide receiver Jeremy Maclin and slot cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. Vince Young will start at quarterback.

Maclin is tough to defend with his speed, especially alongside DeSean Jackson, who is one of the fastest players in the NFL. So that's a break for New England.

Rodgers-Cromartie has had a bad season, so I don't know if his absence means a ton. Joselio Hanson will play in his place.

2:45 p.m.: Quarterback Ryan Mallett is the seventh inactive player for the Patriots, who already ruled out Devin McCourty, Patrick Chung, Brandon Spikes, Chad Ochocinco, Dan Connolly and Dane Fletcher.

2:41 p.m.: Multiple outlets have reported Nnamdi Asomugha will start for the Eagles, so that's something to continue focusing on this afternoon. The Patriots don't have the fastest group of receivers, but they'll certainly try to test Asomugha's mobility with the knee injury.

2:12 p.m.: Eagles star cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha is trying to loosen up his hyperextended knee on the field at the Linc, according to reporters on the scene. Asomugha hurt his knee Thursday at practice and was carted off the field, and this storyline has been developing throughout the week.

12:20 p.m.: The Patriots will be severely undermanned again Sunday, especially on defense, as cornerback Devin McCourty (shoulder), safety Patrick Chung (foot), linebacker Brandon Spikes (knee), linebacker Dane Fletcher (thumb), wide receiver Chad Ochocinco (hamstring) and center Dan Connolly (groin) did not travel to Philadelphia.

Ryan Wendell will likely start for Connolly, and the two have rotated a bit at the position in recent weeks.

Without Ochocinco, this will again be one of those weeks when everyone looks to Taylor Price to step up, so we'll see if it happens.

The four defensive players were all out last week against the Chiefs, too. Safety Sterling Moore, cornerback Antwaun Molden and linebacker Gary Guyton earned the brunt of the work in their place.

8 a.m. ET: It's been tough trying to figure this one out, but that's typically been the case when the Eagles have taken the field this season.

Philly has been loaded with talent, but it hasn't been much of a team. Meanwhile, the Eagles' offensive athleticism will seemingly create some matchup problems for the Patriots, who are trying to put together their second three-game winning streak of the season.

Eagles star quarterback Michael Vick didn't practice all week due to broken ribs, and he reportedly won't play. Instead, it will be Vince Young against Tom Brady.

Kickoff is at 4:15 p.m., but stay with NESN.com throughout the day for complete coverage of this Week 12 clash.

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