Sunday, January 20, 2008

Patriots-Chargers Quasi Live Blog: Third Quarter

The Chargers outgained the Patriots by 70+ yards in the first, and won time of possession. Meanwhile, Bill Cowher and Sterling Sharpe called for Volek instead of Rivers. You have to wonder if they were told to say that for controversy, because there's no way that Norv will throw his QB for future years under the bus like that.

Curiously, Maroney takes the kickoff for the Patriots to start. He gets it to the 39 on another short Kaeding kick. Moss drops an easy ball on first, and the CBS commentators are actively talking about The Distraction. Hmm. Me, I'm wondering when his past history of playoff no-shows gets mentioned. Welker for another easy 9 yarder on second down. Evans converts another third down, and the Pats are in Charger territory. Maroney gets a yard, then Brady takes his first sack of the day on coverage, but it's a minimal loss. On 3rd and 12, Brady gets picked on a tip ball to Drayton Florence, and the Chargers have the ball in Patriots territory. Not a good decision by Brady. Wow.

Turner for 4 to the Patriots 45. Rivers on play action has Jackson wide, wide, wide open. Chargers to the Patriots 28. Play action on the next play is a throw-away, and Rivers really looks bad when he has to run. Chambers makes a ballet move to get them another first, and you can't say too much about how much better he's been in the playoffs, really. Jackson in the flat spins for 6. The wideouts are 11 for 148. Turner for 3, and it's 3rd and 1 from the 5. Very big call here, especially as a stop would be yet another red zone miss.. and Rivers calls time again in this situation. Ouch... and then they wuss out and run Turner to the left, and Seau makes the play for a loss. Kaeding hits again, and it's 14-12, Patriots.

CBS finds Subdued Girl Patriots Fan in the stands. Buck up, girl! Your team is winning!

Kaeding's best kick of the day gets to the 10; Maroney brings it to 33. Seriously, can't Scifres do this? Maroney goes for 18, and I'll say it again -- if the Patriots are going to make plays in the running game, the Chargers can not win. After a timeout, it's Maroney again, breaking a number of tackles but then falling for no gain. Luis Castillo is a beast. A pump fake by Brady who then goes to Moss for 15, who was wide open on the play. Maroney for another 11, and he's been their best player today; no wonder the game is close. He gets another 6, and they're in the red zone. A three tight end formation gets him another 4 and the first. They stay on the ground for nothing on first, and one suspects that Brady will have to pass this in.. and he gets it to Welker at the 2. Can the Chargers get a pass rush? No, but Antonio Cromartie makes a great pick. He mistakingly takes it out of the end zone, and the Chargers will start with bad field position, but still -- that's Brady's third pick of the day, and that's also the Chargers becoming +2 in turnovers for the day. Just what I, um, predicted they'd need... when I took the Patriots and the over.

Turner for 12 on first down, and so much for any Patriot safety hopes. He goes again for 3. On 2nd and 7 from the 19, Rivers misses Gates while on the run, and the Patriots brought pressure. Interesting; one suspects that pressure on Rivers will create good things for the home team. On 3rd and 7, Rivers short arms Manumaleuma from a Harrison blitz, and Scifres is in to punt. He gets it to the Patriot 32 with a bounce, and we're halfway through the third, with the over bet on life support.

Brady to Evans for 14 and a first. CBS notes that the Cromartie pick was the first for Brady in the last 215 red zone attempts; good grief. 62 touchdowns on the other side of that ledger. One suspects that average QBs are in the 2 or 3 to 1 ratio in that part of the field, because a lot of red zone picks is how you lose your job, but still. The quarter ends with the Patriots up by 2, 14-12, in a game that no one predicted.

1 comment:

Alex said...

I found a video (Patriots Fan Club) on Boston.TV thought you'd like to see it:

http://www.boston.tv/clips/631056191.html