What a time it must be to be a New England area sports fan. You have the Boston Red Sox who just advanced to the World Series, the Boston Celtics who have a serious shot of making some noise in the NBA, the Boston College Eagles who as of now are set to play in the NCAA national championship, and the New England Patriots, quite possibly one of the best NFL teams to ever be assembled. All those years of sporting misery are over.
Tom Brady is putting up numbers you would expect to see in a video game. In the first half of their last game against Miami he put up 290 yards and five touchdowns. After taking a 42-7 lead into halftime there really wasn’t much left for him to do, but he added a sixth touchdown, a franchise record, for good measure. Every game this year he has thrown three or more touchdowns for a total of 27. His lowest quarterback rating of the year has been 105.7. A lot of decent quarterbacks don’t even reach that number during the season once. Last week he finished with a perfect 158.3 rating. Most of his passing damage has come from the hands of Randy Moss. Moss, who was believed to be finished, is also have a video game type year. He is averaging 16.6 yards per carry and already has 10 touchdowns. In the past he has told quarterbacks to just throw it up and he’ll get it, that’s exactly what he’s been doing. The addition of Wes Walker has also been a good choice. He is averaging 11.1 yards per carry, and has five touchdowns. What else is scary, perhaps the scariest thing of all, is that they also have a top notch defense. In fact, they are in the top five in every major statistical category on both offense and defense.
The one thing the Redskins have going for them is their defense. They have the number four rated defense overall, and if wasn’t for that side of the ball they probably wouldn’t be 4-2. In fact, you can look at their record in two ways. In the two games they lost they were ahead deep into the game, before blowing a lead. Or, you can say they are lucky to have won four games at this point. The offense of the Redskins, while at times seeming to be better, has sputtered as of late. Quarterback Jason Campbell was only able to complete 12 of 18 passes for 95 yards in last week’s victory over the Arizona Cardinals. In that same game, running back Clinton Portis could only muster 43 yards on 18 carries. If the Redskins want any shot at all in New England on Sunday they need to see production of at least double, and maybe even triple of those numbers
The Patriots have scored more than 34 points in each of their seven games. If the Redskins could somehow hold them under the 30 point mark it would be quite an accomplishment. The Redskins on the other hand have only scored over 30 once, and scored 20 or more only three times. They are playing in New England, and the Patriots are steamrolling competition right now. I expect the Redskins secondary to slow down the Pats just a hair, but not enough to entertain any serious thoughts of an upset. I’m taking the Patriots 30 to 14.