New England Patriots: Five Takeaways From Impressive Showing Versus Panthers

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Aug 22, 2014; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) throws a pass against the Carolina Panthers in the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

1. Tom Brady is still very, very good

For what seemed like the majority of the offseason, there was a lot of talk surrounding Tom Brady, and his status as an elite quarterback. For some reason, a lot of football analysts thought that Brady was slipping, and no longer deserved to be counted among the elite.

Well, I think it’s safe to say he is still elite.

Brady shredded one of the best defensive units in the league last night, as he completed 17 of 21 passes, for 204 yards, and two touchdowns. It was a typical Brady performance, in that it was absolutely surgical. He took advantage of every single matchup he saw, going after the Panthers’ safeties, weak corners, and linebackers.

A lot of people have been worried about this Patriots offense, thinking it may fall behind the talented defensive group Bill Belichick has put together. But last night showed us that Tom Brady has no intentions of letting his offense fall anything short of elite.