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Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots Win / Happy New Year

Tom Brady vs. The Dolphins

1. Patriots:

OFFENSE

* Great acting by Brady on the direct snap to Ridley
* Welker is a good blocker
* 74 receptions and 911 yards receiving is more than an acceptable season for Brandon Lloyd
* That bubble screen to Hernandez is like watching someone with post traumatic syndrome half-heatedly reach for the ball
* Welker circus catch – If that ball didn’t hit the ground, that was a good reception and Patriots ball – trapped against his butt and was down by contact

DEFENSE

* I love the pressure on quarterback
* Never thought I would be concerned about Rob Ninkovich maybe not playing
* Trevor Scott applying nice pressure as well as Francis
* Patriots had good coverage despite not having their two best corners in Denard and Talib

MISC

* Bob Kraft was shown with 0:38 left in the first quarter
* Patriots rolled the dice with Gronk and appear to have won – the way he was holding his arm was un-nerving
* Bill Belichick should show a video montage of stupid dances and poses after sacks or cornerbacks breaking up plays
* Bad thing about the bye is one less Patriots game to watch
* Sad to see Gino and Gil going
* Patriots are one home game away from the AFC Championship!

2. Around the NFL:

* With fiscal cliff just hours away and the average NFL player making $1.9mm (or $118m a game), every Philadelphia Eagle should donate this week’s paycheck – disgraceful effort looking like France in 1940
* Nice gesture by Arian Foster scoring a touchdown and then touching the Chuckstrong sign and bowing in homage to the Colts coach’s battle with cancer
* San Francisco fans were booing kicker David Akers off the field
* Why don’t NFL candidates have a football in their hands when timed in the 60 at the combine?
* Mark Sanchez the last four games – 1 TD to 8 INT
* Jets record the last three years:11-5 to 8-8 to 6-10
* Despite all the talk – there seems to be more concussions than ever and players allowed to come right back on the field
* Nice that the Jets and Giants didn’t even qualify for the playoffs
* Adrian Peterson 9 yards shy – Eric Dickerson is sitting at home with his goggles on smiling and counting all his money he made at SMU

3. College Football:

Thirteen of the top 20 teams are not playing football on New Years Day – the Rankings of the teams playing on New Years (teamrankings.com):

7. Georgia
8. South Carolina
11. Stanford
14. Michigan
17. Nebraska
18. Northern Illinois
19. Wisconsin
21. Florida State
22. Northwestern
26. Oklahoma State
28. Mississippi State
62. Purdue

4. Receivers that have caught Tom Brady touchdown passes:

1. Randy Moss…………39
2. Gronk…………………..38
3. Welker…………………34
4. Deion Branch……….24
5. Aaron Hernandez…18

5. Top Three All Time quarterbacks in passing yards: Jets vs. Patriots

Jets

Joe Namath – 27,057
Ken O’Brien – 24,386
Richard Todd – 18,241

Patriots

Tom Brady – 44,750
Drew Bledsoe – 29,657
Steve Grogan – 26,886

6. Roger:

Back up Texas Ranger catcher Geno Petralli used to kill Roger Clemens (16-44) how about against great pitchers and average pitchers:

Against Clemens, Seaver, Niekro, Eckersley, Guidry, Viola, Steib, Boddicker, Morris and Lee Smith: 54-124 (.435)
Against everyone else: 447-1,750 (.255)

7. Amazing Stat:

Tom Brady stats:

* 136-39 (.777) in the regular season / 16-6 playoffs (.727)
* He has not missed one game other than the season of 2008
* Brady has seven rushing touchdowns the last two years
* Has a losing record against only one team – Broncos 3-5
* On Monday, Thursday and Saturday – 24-5 (.827)
* Record in December 41-6 (.872) – think of that

8. Old School:

In the 1986 NBA Finals clincher against the Rockets, Bird and Mchale combined for: 58 points / 21 rebounds / 13 assists / 4 blocks

9. Just a Little Bit Outside:

New Year’s resolutions

* To not emotionally invest in Red Sox
* To not wince every time Tom Brady gets hit
* To turn the TV off everytime Jon Lester scowls at an umpire or teammate
* Not to say I told you so when Rondo does something insane and the Celtics lose him
* To be thankful for the what the Patriots have done for this community
* To not shake my head if the Celtics give the Paul Pierce with under 15 seconds left in the game and the outcome on the line
* To get more ice cream sundaes at Kimballs
* To go to college hockey games and more high school sporting events
* To not get aggravated when people dribble right past Garnett to the hoop
* To not waste negative energy rooting against Lebron, A Rod, Jets
* To give up hope for a 16 team college football playoff and a salary cap in baseball
* To continue to believe that Tom Brady is the greatest QB of all time (not even debatable)
* To be thankful for Pedro, Tom Brady, Bobby Orr, Bill Belichick, Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, Dave Cowens, Cam Neely, Gronk, Good Nomar, Pedroia, Fred Lynn in my lifetime
* To not count the empty red seats at the Patriots games
* To not ask why the Patriots don’t blitz more
* To not wonder why Milan Lucic doesn’t pump his legs and arms everytime he is on the ice
* To not ask why Rem-dog has sold out and doesn’t call out players when they deserve it

10. Randomocity:

* Watched a great documentary at the suggestion of Glenn B. – The Last Play at Shea Stadium featuring a concert hosted by Billy Joel
* Movie Zero Dark Thirty is getting amazing reviews
* Videos this weekend: Tower Heist (C) / Salmon Fishing in the Yemen (B+)
* The fact that Mike Napoli hasn’t told the Red Sox to shove it – means that the Red Sox must have insanely overpaid compared to other teams
* Jerry York the all time leader in college hockey wins – time to start working on a statue over there at the Heights

About Michael

Lifelong Boston resident who finds equal enjoyment in celebrating the local team's success as I do complaining about their failures. I have been writing the Top Ten for the last decade as well as five sports books: 26 Miles to Boston, Rebound, The President's Team, The Great Book of Boston Sports Lists and NBA List Jam.

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