Rams
Patriots
16 - 23 Final
  for this game

Faulk, Cassel helps Patriots defeat Rams

Oct 26, 2008 - 10:33 PM By Mike Petraglia PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

FOXBOROUGH, Massachusetts (Ticker) -- The New England Patriots had just enough to survive the St. Louis Rams.

Matt Cassel threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Faulk with 3:19 remaining and Randy Moss caught seven passes for 102 yards as the Patriots held off the Rams, 23-16, at Gillette Stadium. It was the first loss in three games for the Rams under new head coach Jim Haslett.

"It was a great catch by him," Cassel said of Faulk. "He made a great move on a linebacker. He was in one-on-one coverage and I just tried to put it out there and give him a chance to make the catch. He did a great job. He did what Kevin Faulk does best."

"I think that's what you come in for," Faulk said. "You don't have a lot of opportunities sometimes. But the thing is, you always have to be ready because you don't know when the situation is going to come up. The situation came up today where we were down to three running backs and we had to carry the load."

The Patriots improved to 3-1 this season at home, despite season-ending injuries to Tom Brady, Rodney Harrison and Laurence Maroney.

"Like I told the team after the game, this is a good example of having to play 60 minutes like we always have to do in this league," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said. "Those guys really stepped up and made some big plays in the fourth quarter."

The game-winning drive required only a 53-yard drive by Cassel, as the Patriots finally took advantage of the good field position they enjoyed all day.

"The game really boiled down to second half field position," said Rams coach Jim Haslett, who lost for the first time in three games since taking over for Scott Linehan. "They had great field position on offense all day. Our offense had (bad) field position all day. We had too many penalties on special teams and that is really what it came down to."

Deltha O'Neal, out earlier in the game with a head injury, sealed the win with an interception and a 47-yard interception return late in the fourth quarter.

With Steven Jackson not playing because of a thigh injury, the Rams (2-5) turned to their passing game and it responded early and often.

Marc Bulger found rookie Donnie Avery for 35 yards on the opening drive of the game, setting up a 20-yard Josh Brown field goal.

The Patriots showed early in the game that they were making defensive adjustments on the fly, forcing the Patriots coaching staff to alter their defensive approach.

"It kind of did just because we didn't know what to expect and if they were cooking up a few new things," said Patriots linebacker Adalius Thomas, who had two sacks on the day. "When one of their best players isn't in there, then you don't know exactly what it is. They stayed true to what they like to do, but at the same time, their running game wasn't going to be exactly the same because Jackson was out."

Avery finished with 163 yards on six catches while Bulger was 18-of-34 for 301 yards and a touchdown in the loss.

"The numbers don't count if you can't get the win," Avery said. "We need to go out next week and get it done. We are a team and everyone has to put in, that is what we did today. We just didn't get it done today."

Down 3-0, the Patriots (5-2) responded with 13-play drive that ended with a two-yard touchdown plunge by rookie BenJarvus Green-Ellis, his second touchdown in as many games.

Green-Ellis, a rookie from Mississippi, got his first career start as the Patriots were playing without running backs Sammy Morris (knee) and LaMont Jordan (calf).

But the Rams again turned to the air to respond, as Bulger connected with Avery for 69 yards down the middle of the field for a touchdown, the longest completion of his career.

The Patriots responded with field goals of 30 and 27 yards from Steve Gostkowski, the last of which came as time expired in the second quarter.

The Rams used a bit of trickery to open the second half as Brown executed an on-sides kick perfectly, with the Rams recovering at their own 42. But St. Louis went three-and-out and punted.

Oshiomogho Atogwe intercepted Cassel on New England's second possession of the third quarter and the Rams converted it into a game-tying 44-yard field goal by Brown.

With the score, 13-13, the Rams defense came up big again later in the quarter when they stopped Green-Ellis on fourth and 1 at the St. Louis 36. On the next play, Bulger found Avery for 44 yards, setting up the go-ahead 25-yard field goal.






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    Rams 16, Patriots 23  FinalOct 26 10:10 PM


  • NFL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 3 7 3 3 16
    NEW ENGLAND 7 6 0 10 23 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: STL - FG, JOSH BROWN 20 YD, 6:11. Drive: 12
    plays, 66 yards in 6:11. Key plays:
    Pittman 2-yard run on 4th-and-1 to
    St Louis 43; Minor 4-yard run on
    3rd-and-1 to New England 44; Bulger
    35-yard

    Oct 26 4:08 PM
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    Rams 16, Patriots 23  4th - 1:08Oct 26 4:06 PM
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    Rams 16, Patriots 23  4th - 1:08Oct 26 4:01 PM


  • NFL
    TD NWE
    KEVIN FAULK 15 YD PASS FROM MATT CASSEL
    (STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI KICK)
    ST LOUIS 16
    NEW ENGLAND 23 3:13 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Rams 16, Patriots 23  4th - 3:13Oct 26 3:47 PM
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    Rams 16, Patriots 16  4th - 6:57Oct 26 3:42 PM


  • NFL
    FG NWE
    STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 41 YD
    ST LOUIS 16
    NEW ENGLAND 16 8:22 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Rams 16, Patriots 16  4th - 8:22Oct 26 3:33 PM
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    Rams 16, Patriots 13  4th - 10:35Oct 26 3:31 PM
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    Rams 16, Patriots 13  4th - 10:35Oct 26 3:30 PM
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    Rams 16, Patriots 13  4th - 10:35Oct 26 3:29 PM


  • NFL
    FG STL
    JOSH BROWN 25 YD
    ST LOUIS 16
    NEW ENGLAND 13 12:25 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Rams 16, Patriots 13  4th - 12:25Oct 26 3:16 PM
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    Rams 13, Patriots 13  End of 3rdOct 26 3:15 PM


  • NFL
    END, 3RD QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 3 7 3 13
    NEW ENGLAND 7 6 0 13 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: STL - FG, JOSH BROWN 20 YD, 6:11. Drive: 12
    plays, 66 yards in 6:11. Key plays:
    Pittman 2-yard run on 4th-and-1 to
    St Louis 43; Minor 4-yard run on
    3rd-and-1 to New England 44; Bulger


    Oct 26 3:10 PM


  • NFL
    FG STL
    JOSH BROWN 44 YD
    ST LOUIS 13
    NEW ENGLAND 13 8:03 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Rams 13, Patriots 13  3rd - 8:03Oct 26 2:51 PM
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    Rams 13, Patriots 13  3rd - 8:03Oct 26 2:51 PM


  • NFL
    FG NWE
    STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 27 YD
    ST LOUIS 10
    NEW ENGLAND 13 0:00 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Rams 10, Patriots 13  HalfOct 26 2:23 PM


  • NFL
    FG NWE
    STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 30 YD
    ST LOUIS 10
    NEW ENGLAND 10 1:49 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Rams 10, Patriots 10  2nd - 1:49Oct 26 2:12 PM


  • NFL
    TD STL
    DONNIE AVERY 69 YD PASS FROM MARC BULGER
    (JOSH BROWN KICK)
    ST LOUIS 10
    NEW ENGLAND 7 14:14 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Rams 10, Patriots 7  2nd - 14:14Oct 26 1:40 PM


  • NFL
    END, 1ST QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 3 3
    NEW ENGLAND 7 7 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: STL - FG, JOSH BROWN 20 YD, 6:11. Drive: 12
    plays, 66 yards in 6:11. Key plays:
    Pittman 2-yard run on 4th-and-1 to
    St. Louis 43; Minor 4-yard run on
    3rd-and-1 to New England 44; Bulger

    Oct 26 1:36 PM
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    Rams 3, Patriots 7  1st - 1:43Oct 26 1:31 PM


  • NFL
    TD NWE
    BENJARVUS GREEN-ELLIS 2 YD RUN
    (STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI KICK)
    ST LOUIS 3
    NEW ENGLAND 7 1:43 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Rams 3, Patriots 7  1st - 1:43Oct 26 1:31 PM


  • NFL
    FG STL
    JOSH BROWN 20 YD
    ST LOUIS 3
    NEW ENGLAND 0 8:49 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Rams 3, Patriots 0  1st - 8:49Oct 26 1:17 PM
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