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With your team down by three with under two minutes left to go, who would you rather have leading your team down the field than Tom Brady? That’s exactly what happened in Sunday’s game as Brady stepped onto the field with only one thing on his mind; “You can’t not get the ball in the end zone.”
And Brady did just that, finding Aaron Hernandez in the endzone with 22 seconds left on the clock to give the Patriots a close win over the Dallas Cowboys and moving the team to 5-1 and back atop the AFC East with Buffalo losing.
This was Brady’s 32nd comeback in games where the Patriots trailed or were tied in the fourth quarter, so it’s nothing new for Pats fans or the fans of teams playing them. The fact that he was able to do it against the fourth overall defense in the NFL, who had been stifling the Patriot offense all day, says something about Brady.
“When you’re playing against a quarterback like Tom Brady, he’s going to go down as one of the all-time greats,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “So you have to try to make it hard on him.”
Dallas did a good job all day of making things difficult for Brady as they had an extra week to prepare coming off a bye week. He was sacked three times, two by DeMarcus Ware who now has seven through five games, and picked off twice, but Brady turned it up on that last drive going 8 for 9 with 78 yards and the game winning score.
This wasn’t the best game for the Patriots as they had four turnovers, but they still found a way to pull out a victory. Brady finished 27 of 41 for 289 yards and two touchdowns.
Dallas fell to 2-3 behind an okay game from Tony Romo who was 27 of 41 for 317 yards 1 TD and 1 Int. The Cowboys broke the tie with 5:13 left and after a Patriots punt decided to run the ball three times, only gaining 5 yards and punted right back.
Welker, who entered the day as the leagues’ leading receiver, was held to 6 catches for 45 yards, but three of those catches came in that final drive none bigger than his last which put the ball at the 8 yard line. That’s when Brady found Hernandez in one on one coverage and zipped a pass to him for the winning score.
“This is probably, as a whole, one of our worst performances as an offense,” Patriots wide receiver Deion Branch said. “It’s times like this when we show what we’re made of — that last drive.”
All things aside the Patriots are right where they were expected to be, heading into their bye week at a 5-1 mark. Things don’t get easier for the Patriots after the bye though as they travel to Pittsburgh and then face the Giants at home.