Browns
Patriots
17 - 34 Final
  for this game

Early interceptions, Brady's three TDs help Pats roll

Oct 7, 2007 - 10:49 PM By Mike Petraglia PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

FOXBORO, Massachusetts (Ticker) - Outside of a late lapse, the New England Patriots continue to manhandle their opponents.

Taking advantage of three first-half interceptions, Tom Brady and the Patriots built a sizeable halftime lead before posting a 34-17 victory over the Cleveland Browns at Gillette Stadium on Sunday.

Although first-time starter Derek Anderson came in leading the Browns to two wins in their last three games, he was intercepted twice by Junior Seau in the opening half. It was the first two interceptions for the veteran linebacker since 2002.

"It's the name of the game," Seau said. "Obviously, you go out there and want to perform well and stop the run and get them into a passing situation. Whenever you make big plays like we did today, it definitely leans in our favor and offense took care of the rest."

Cornerback Asante Samuel had an interception and forced another one in the first half, as New England (5-0) took advantage of the turnovers to race to a 20-0 lead.

"It was big, especially the one in the end zone," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said. "That was obviously a big play. We were able to get (four) of them. Turnovers, field position, it's always important and we all know the stats that go with those turnovers."

Brady threw three touchdown passes, completing 22-of-38 passes for 265 yards, and tying an NFL record in the process. Brady joined Steve Young as the only quarterbacks to throw at least three TDs in five consecutive games to begin a season.

Young accomplished the feat for San Francisco in 1998.

"Those four turnovers (were) all critical plays of the game," Brady said. "Offensively, we had the ball in a short field a bunch (and) couldn't really get it in the red area like we were wanting to.

"We had a few three-and-outs that weren't very good, some missed opportunities in the passing game. But I think everybody is happy we won and to be 5-0, you can't be much better than that at this point in the year."

The loss spoiled the homecoming of Cleveland coach Romeo Crennel and linebacker Willie McGinest, both of whom played key roles in bringing Super Bowl titles to New England.

Crennel is in his third season as the Browns coach after serving as the Patriots' defensive coordinator from 2001-04.

"We came up and played a good football team today here at their place and we didn't do enough things to win the game," Crennel said. "We had a good first drive, drove it all the way down into great scoring position and come up with no points and I think that hurt us in the first half and set a tone for the first half."

McGinest, a linebacker, spent his first 12 seasons of his career with New England before signing with Cleveland in 2006.

"Coming back, but who wants to come back to a whooping," McGinest said. "It's good to be back and see some of the old faces, coaches and players. I just wish we would have played better."

With New England leading just 3-0 and Cleveland threatening to take the lead at the 1-yard line, Samuel tipped a pass from Anderson on 3rd-and-goal. The ball was hauled in by Seau, ending the Cleveland threat.

"We were in zone coverage and I had a guy going to the flat and I saw that someone had taken him, so I just zoned up and started reading the quarterback and I tipped the ball, which I should have caught, and Junior made a good play," Samuel said.

"It didn't get batted," Anderson added. "I just made a poor decision, threw it across my body. The guy came off the receiver in the flat and made a pick."

Samuel added his own interception with 2:33 remaining in the first, giving the Patriots the ball at the Browns' 34-yard-line. On the next play, Brady found Donte Stallworth in the left flat, with the receiver breaking free of the grips of Leigh Bodden and racing into the end zone for his first score for a 10-0 lead.

"You just go out and play and wait on your opportunity," Stallworth said. "Today, I got a little more opportunity because they were trying to take Randy (Moss) out of the game."

Cleveland (2-3) did not break through until midway through the third quarter on Phil Dawson's 42-yard field goal.

Early in the fourth, Anderson, who was 22-of-43 for 287 yards, found Tim Carter down the left sideline for a 21-yard diving touchdown, cutting the deficit to 20-10.

But Brady responded, engineering a nine-play, 71-yard drive that was capped off by a 25-yard TD to wide-open tight end Ben Watson.

It was the second touchdown of the day for Watson, who finished with a career-high 107 yards on six receptions.

"The defense played great," Watson said. "They got us turnovers to set us up. They got a fumble recovery and scored. They played a great game. They set us up a lot with a short field."

The Browns made another charge, closing within 27-17 when Anderson found tight end Kellen Winslow for a 14-yard TD with 5:56 remaining.

However, Winslow was stripped off the ball on Cleveland's ensuing possession by cornerback Randall Gay, who raced 15 yards for a touchdown with 42 seconds left to seal the scoring.

"We threw some turnovers," Crennel said. "They intercepted some balls in good field position, and when you give Tom Brady good field position, he is going to hurt you. Sometimes when you give him bad field position, he is going to hurt you."

In addition to the three interceptions, Anderson was sacked three times, including twice by Tedy Bruschi. The Patriots' defensive captain now has 30 1/2 sacks in his career.

New England safety Rodney Harrison played but did not start in his first game since serving an NFL-mandated four-game suspension for admitted HGH use.






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    joestilwell Added 5 roots

    Browns vs. PatriotsDec 16 12:43 PM


  • NFL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    CLEVELAND 0 0 3 14 17
    NEW ENGLAND 10 10 0 14 34 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NWE - FG, STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 20 YD, 6:59.
    Drive: 14 plays, 78 yards in 6:59.
    Key plays: Brady 16-yard pass to
    Moss on 3rd-and-5 to New England
    41; Brady 20-yard pass to Moss to
    Cleveland 15

    Oct 7 4:20 PM


  • NFL
    TD NWE
    RANDALL GAY 15 YD FUMBLE RETURN
    (STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI KICK)
    CLEVELAND 17
    NEW ENGLAND 34 0:42 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 4:13 PM


  • NFL
    TD CLE
    KELLEN WINSLOW 14 YD PASS FROM DEREK ANDERSON
    (PHIL DAWSON KICK)
    CLEVELAND 17
    NEW ENGLAND 27 5:56 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 3:55 PM


  • NFL
    TD NWE
    BENJAMIN WATSON 25 YD PASS FROM TOM BRADY
    (STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI KICK)
    CLEVELAND 10
    NEW ENGLAND 27 9:40 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 3:37 PM


  • NFL
    TD CLE
    TIM CARTER 21 YD PASS FROM DEREK ANDERSON
    (PHIL DAWSON KICK)
    CLEVELAND 10
    NEW ENGLAND 20 14:10 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 3:24 PM


  • NFL
    END, 3RD QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    CLEVELAND 0 0 3 3
    NEW ENGLAND 10 10 0 20 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NWE - FG, STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 20 YD, 6:59.
    Drive: 14 plays, 78 yards in 6:59.
    Key plays: Brady 16-yard pass to
    Moss on 3rd-and-5 to New England
    41; Brady 20-yard pass to Moss to
    Cleve

    Oct 7 3:19 PM


  • NFL
    FG CLE
    PHIL DAWSON 42 YD
    CLEVELAND 3
    NEW ENGLAND 20 7:32 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 2:58 PM


  • NFL
    HALFTIME 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    CLEVELAND 0 0 0
    NEW ENGLAND 10 10 20 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NWE - FG, STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 20 YD, 6:59.
    Drive: 14 plays, 78 yards in 6:59.
    Key plays: Brady 16-yard pass to
    Moss on 3rd-and-5 to New England
    41; Brady 20-yard pass to Moss to
    Cleveland

    Oct 7 2:27 PM


  • NFL
    TD NWE
    BENJAMIN WATSON 7 YD PASS FROM TOM BRADY
    (STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI KICK)
    CLEVELAND 0
    NEW ENGLAND 20 1:01 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 2:21 PM


  • NFL
    FG NWE
    STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 25 YD
    CLEVELAND 0
    NEW ENGLAND 13 6:12 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 2:05 PM


  • NFL
    END, 1ST QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    CLEVELAND 0 0
    NEW ENGLAND 10 10 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NWE - FG, STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 20 YD, 6:59.
    Drive: 14 plays, 78 yards in 6:59.
    Key plays: Brady 16-yard pass to
    Moss on 3rd-and-5 to New England
    41; Brady 20-yard pass to Moss to
    Cleve

    Oct 7 1:42 PM


  • NFL
    TD NWE
    DONTE' STALLWORTH 34 YD PASS FROM TOM BRADY
    (STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI KICK)
    CLEVELAND 0
    NEW ENGLAND 10 2:33 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 1:34 PM


  • NFL
    FG NWE
    STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 20 YD
    CLEVELAND 0
    NEW ENGLAND 3 8:01 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Browns vs. PatriotsOct 7 1:16 PM
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