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October 23, 2007
Brady on target for record season
BY ROBERT LEE
Journal Sports Writer
FOXBORO – Tom Brady’s career is like something right out of a Hollywood script.
From being drafted in the 6th round, to being thrust into the starting lineup after quarterback Drew Bledsoe went down with an injury, to dating super models, to leading the Patriots to three Super Bowl victories.
Things like that just don’t happen in real life. At least they aren’t supposed too.
But Brady has been defying odds time and time again ever since he entered the NFL.
And as good as he has been since he entered the league – an NFL-best 89-26 record since the Super Bowl era (since 1966) with at least 40 starts, three Super Bowl victories, and two Super Bowl MVP awards – as hard as it is to believe, it seems like the best is yet to come.
Brady is having the best year of his life on the football field and if he continues to play at the pace that he is, he will have one of the best seasons by an NFL quarterback in league history, statistically speaking.
Brady needs just one more touchdown pass to tie his career mark of 28 (2002, 2004), and the undefeated Patriots have only played seven games. His 27 touchdowns are the most thrown by a quarterback through the first seven games in the history of the NFL.
He is on pace to throw 62 touchdowns which would shatter the NFL record for touchdowns thrown by a quarterback, 49, which was set by Peyton Manning in 2004.
Brady, who has a 73.8 completion percentage (169-for-229), is on pace to break the single-season completion percentage NFL record of 70.55 percent which Ken Anderson from Cincinnati set in 1982.
He’s on pace to obliterate Manning’s 2004-single-season quarterback rating record (121.1) with a 137.9 QB rating so far this year, and he’s on pace to finish second on the on the NFL all-time list for single-season passing yards, a position which Kurt Warner currently holds with 4,830 passing yards (2001, St. Louis).
Dan Marino threw for 5,084 yards (317.8 yards per game) for Miami in 1984.
Brady has thrown for 2,125 yards so far through the air, averaging 303.6 yards per game, which would give him 4,857 at the end of the regular season.
His latest victim was the Dolphins.
Brady, who had a quarterback rating of 68.2 in his previous six meetings with Miami, completed 21 of 25 passes for 354 yards and a career-high and team-record six touchdowns in a 49-28 rout of the Dolphins. His quarterback rating of 158.3 was also a career-high.
If Brady can throw four touchdowns passes on Sunday against Washington, he will be only the third player in NFL history to throw four touchdown passes in three consecutive games. Marino (1984) and Manning (2004) are the other two to accomplish that feat.
Brady has given a lot of credit for his success this season to his teammates.
“It makes my job easy when those guys are making those plays,” Brady said of his receivers. “It’s easy as a quarterback if you have people open and every time you throw it they catch it. It’s not like they are making many mistakes. I think they are probably more in the zone than I am. They feel great about what we’re doing.”
Miami had no solution for Brady and his receivers.
“They're stacked, and they spread the ball all over the field,” Miami linebacker Zach Thomas said after the game. “Today Wes and Randy Moss, they just ate us up. When Brady was in there, we couldn't stop them. They are stacked, and they gave
Brady a lot of help this year. They really took it to us. Everything worked for them, and we couldn't make a play and we couldn't get them out of rhythm.”
Brady didn’t have a go-to receiver last season because Deion Branch left for Seattle after the 2005 season. In the offseason, the Patriots signed former five-time Pro Bowler Randy Moss, who leads the league in receiving yards and receiving touchdowns with 44 catches for 732 yards and 10 TDs, which includes his four catches for 122 yards and two touchdowns performance on Sunday.
“He’s something else,” Brady said of Moss. “…Randy’s two touchdown catches were awesome.”
Said New England coach Bill Belichick of Moss, “He’s got great ball skills. It's not just the long balls. He does a good job on all of them, and we've seen him do it before.”
With Moss opening up the field, Wes Welker, who the Patriots also singed in the offseason, has thrived with his excellent route-running skills in the underneath routes.
Welker has a team-high 47 receptions for 524 yards and five touchdowns. He caught nine passes for 138 yards and two touchdowns on Sunday.
The Patriots also signed Donte Stallworth prior to the season. Stallworth provides another deep threat. He has 22 catches for 367 yards and three touchdowns, including three catches for 51 yards and a touchdown on Sunday. Stallworth is averaging 16.7 yards per catch this year.
“Those guys are making the plays,” Brady said. “I’m just throwing it and they’re catching it and they’re making the run after the catch…The receivers [do] a great job. [They] makes my job awfully easy, I’ll tell you that.”
Throw explosive tight end Ben Watson (18 catches, 222 yards, five touchdowns) and running backs Laurence Maroney, Kevin Faulk, and Sammy Morris catching passes out of the backfield into the mix, and Brady has become the most dangerous passer in the NFL this season.
---- Robert Lee
Posted by Rob Lee at 10:20 PM to Tom Brady
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Brady nominated for FedEx player of week
Tom Brady has a chance to win another honor this season, as he is one of three players nominated for the FedEx Express player of the week award.
The winner is selected by fans voting on nfl.com.
Brady outdid himself yet again in Miami, completing 21-of-25 passes for 354 yards (16.9 yards per completion), a franchise record six touchdowns and no interceptions.
The other nominees are Denver's Jay Cutler (22-for-29, 248 yards, 3TDs in a win over Pittsburgh) and Houston's Sage Rosenfels (22-for-35, 290 yards, NFL record-tying four fourth-quarter TDs).
Posted by Shalise Manza Young at 6:46 PM to Tom Brady
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Parking changes at Gillette Stadium
FOXBORO -- If you're planning on going to Gillette Stadium this weekend and haven't yet been to a game this season, there have been some changes to changes to Gillette Stadium's parking configuration since last season that you should keep in mind before you arrive.
Due to construction, the majority of spaces available have moved across Route 1, away from the stadium.
If you’re coming from the North:
Save yourself time by staying to the right and parking in P10. You’ll have more time to tailgate with easier access to and exiting the stadium. You will have to cross Route 1 at the marked pedestrian crossings, but P10 is still your best bet.
If you’re coming from the South:
Because of the newly-built median on Route 1, you’ll have to decide on which side of Route 1 you will park prior to the Pine Street intersection (near the Seasonal Specialty Stores and The Lafayette House).
If you want to park on the left side of Route 1 (P10 or P11), stay to the left of the median. If you want to park on the stadium side of Route 1, stay to the right (P8 or P7).
Posted by Rob Lee at 3:09 PM | Permalink
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