New England Patriots Grades: Tom Brady Leads The Way


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[Editor’s note: credit for the content in this article goes to my co-editor, Cyrus Geller. Due to some technical difficulties he was not able to publish this work on his account. Again, this is the work of Cyrus Geller, not Connor Fulton.]

Passing Offense: A+

The Dolphins were riding high coming into this game, and Tom Brady completely squashed their hopes. Number 12 was absolutely unbelievable on Thursday, completing 26 of 38 passes for 356 yards and four touchdowns. Patriots fans knew coming into this season that Brady was going to be on a 2007-type tear, and that is exactly what he is doing, as he doesn’t just want to beat everyone, he wants to annihilate them.

All things considered, the Pats’ offensive line played well, as they are riddled with injuries and were faced with protecting Brady from one of the most explosive defensive lines in the NFL. Granted, Brady was getting rid of the ball just way too quickly, but I think the line did just fine. The three-headed monster of Rob Gronkowski, Julian Edelman, and Dion Lewis was back in full force, combining for 19 catches, 287 yards, and all four touchdowns. Those guys simply can’t be covered. End of story.

Rushing Offense: B-

Once again the game-plan for the Pats didn’t really include a heavy dose of the running game, but LeGarrette Blount did rip off a few nice runs, as he finished with 72 yards on 17 carries.

Pass Defense: B+

Ryan Tannehill ended up throwing for 300 yards, but most of them came in garbage time when the outcome of the game was decided. The Patriots biggest weakness is their lack of depth in the defensive backfield, but they showed up to play on Thursday. As for the front seven, it continues to get better and better each weak, as I really think it is a top-5 unit in the NFL. They sacked Tannehill five times, and constantly pressured him all game long. New England’s offense gets all the attention, and rightfully so, but this defense is a great group, and they will only get better as the season goes on.

Next: Week 9 AFC Power Rankings: Raiders skyrocket

Run Defense: A

After running roughshod over the Texans last week, Lamar Miller was held to 15 yards on nine carries against the Patriots. People mistakenly think New England has a bad run defense, but they are very, very wrong. Alan Branch, Malcom Brown, and Sealver Siliga are extremely stout up front, Chandler Jones and Rob Ninkovich are excellent on the edge, and Don’t Hightower and Jamie Collins are the best inside linebacking duo in the league. When the Patriots commit to stopping the run, they are elite at it.