At 12:59pm EST the Miami Dolphins had hopes of repeating a variation of the Miami Miracle. Unfortunately for Dolphins fans, that hope ended shortly after kickoff.
From the Patriots’ perspective (because I am a Patriots fan. Duh.), it was an immaculate outing. On defence, they put up seven sacks and four INTs, two of which were returned for TDs. Offensively, they had a field day in the endzone en route to a 43-0 victory. Tom Brady went 20/28 for 264 yards and 2 TDs with 1 rushing TD; Sony Michel had a bounceback game running for 85 yards and a TD.
The big storyline, however, was Antonio Brown playing his first game as a member of the New England Patriots. Brown didn’t disappoint in front of his home crowd, putting up 56 yards and a TD on 4 receptions. There were some minor miscues for the Brady-Brown connection, but it is still very early on in their journey.
It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows for the Patriots as they had some injury scares along the offensive line (OL). Left Tackle (LT) Isaiah Wynn was taken out of the game with a toe injury. One hopes that Wynn being taken out of the game was merely cautionary given the level of competition they were facing. Left Guard (LG) Joe Thuney was also shaken up in the first quarter, but he remained in the game.
The injuries along the offensive line are beginning to scare Patriots fans (namely me). Starting Centre (C) David Andrews is likely out for the season with blood clots in his lungs; Right Tackle (RT) Marcus Cannon was out of this game after a scary shoulder injury sustained in week 1; now Isaiah Wynn’s toe injury. One can hope that Wynn will be OK moving forward.
Finishing the Game
It was a day where the Patriots had to prove to themselves they could play a full 60 minutes even against the worst competition. Up by over 30 points in the 4th quarter, the starting offence (including Tom Brady) remained on the field for garbage time.
Bill Belichick showed no mercy on his former assistants Brian Flores (Dolphins Head Coach), Chad O’Shea (Dolphins Offensive Coordinator), and Josh Boyer (Dolphins Cornerbacks Coach) as they piled on the points in the 4th quarter. According to Jeff Howe of The Athletic, Belichick reminded the team about last year’s Miami Miracle and made it a point to keep them out there for the full 60 minutes.
Here’s why Tom Brady never came out of the game: All week, Bill Belichick harped on last year’s loss in Miami, reminding them they played 59 minutes, 53 seconds. Belichick wanted 60 minutes today. Can’t demand 60 minutes then take out the QB.
— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) September 15, 2019
This was never meant to be a close game, but seeing the Patriots dominate was still a welcomed sight. The Patriots got out of Miami relatively healthy and that is all that one can ask for in a game like this. Antonio Brown looked really good in his debut, but still has some room for improvement as he gets acclimated in this offence.
The Patriots continue their streak of playing battered teams in week 3, playing against the Sam Darnold-less New York Jets.
Embed from Getty Images