Brady’s Back, Back Again!
Tom Brady makes his return against the Browns after his four game suspension
As we all saw on Sunday, Tom Brady is back. For those of you who have been living under a rock for the last year and a half Tom Brady was suspended for the first four games of this season due to his involvement, or lack thereof, in the deflategate scandal.
His first game back was against the Cleveland Browns where he had a spectacular game. He had a 70% completion rate, threw for 406 yards with three touchdowns, and ended the game with zero interceptions. Brady claimed that he “had some rust to work off” during that game, but if that was a rusty performance then I can’t even begin to fathom what an up to speed performance will look like.
There was a lot of concern over how well Brady was going preform when he came back. People were concerned that since he wasn’t able to practice and that he was older (he is 39 now) these things would slow him down. As we witnessed this weekend, he hasn’t missed a beat.
Brady wasn’t the only one who had an impressive game; Martellus Bennett had a great day with 67 yards and caught all three of Tom Brady’s touchdowns. Bennett has been enjoying the spotlight while Gronk has been working on coming back from a hamstring injury. However, it only took one game with Brady back for him to show the rest of the NFL that Gronk is still the best tight end.. While Brady was gone, Gronk only had one catch for 11 yards, but in one game with Brady back he had five catches for 109 yards.
Chris Hogan seems to be right on point with Brady as well. Twice during the game, Brady went deep with Hogan resulting in Hogan having four catches for 114 yards. Julian Edelman, however, hasn’t been producing numbers like last season. Against the Browns, Edelman only had five catches for 35 yards. He still has yet to get a touchdown this season nor has he broken 100 yards in any of his games. It seems that it might be a little bit longer before Edelman becomes the threat he was last season, but Hogan will fill in for in for the meantime.
The defense was playing much better than last week’s matchup as well. The Pats held the Browns to only 13 points, while at the same time getting an interception and a safety. This was a far better Patriots team now that Brady has come back. The whole team seems much more energized and in sync with one another.
There is one player that needs to be discussed however; Stephen Gostkowski. Ever since the AFC Championship game against the Broncos where he missed the PAT, he hasn’t seemed to be himself, and is currently 7 for 10 in field goal attempts. He has missed a field goal against the Dolphins, Bills and Browns which makes three out of five games this season he has missed a field goal. Gostkowski only missed a total of three field goals last season, it seems to be worrisome that he has missed three this early in the season. On the positive side though, he hasn’t missed a PAT this season, and hopefully he will continue to produce big numbers.
Overall, the game against the Browns was an impressive team win. Now that Brady is back, the Patriots are back in business. They will be tested against another Ohio team when they take on the Cincinnati Bengals this Sunday at Foxborough.