Posted October 14, 2013

Patriots steal last-second win from Saints with Tom Brady touchdown pass

New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints
Kenbrell Thompkins brings in the game-winning touchdown. (Stephan Savoia/AP)

Kenbrell Thompkins brings in the game-winning touchdown. (Stephan Savoia/AP)

“Well, I’m sorry you had to rewrite some of those [game] stories at the end.”

That’s how New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick began his postgame press conference on Sunday evening — with a smile that showed obvious relief. It was an emotion felt by everyone on Belichick’s team, soon after Tom Brady threw a 17-yard pass to receiver Kenbrell Thompkins with five second left in the game to give the Pats a 30-27 victory. The win moved the Pats to 5-1, and knocked the Saints from the ranks of the undefeated.

The Saints and the beat writers moving quickly to make deadline may have been cursing Brady and Belichick, but the Saints had nobody to blame but themselves. With 2:24 left in the game, Brady threw a pass to Julian Edelman that was intercepted by cornerback Keenan Lewis, and New Orleans’ offense atypically mangled the clock, and it wasn’t the first time. The Saints got the ball at the New England 24-yard line with 2:46 left in the game after New England gave the ball up on downs. New Orleans went three-and-out in both subsequent drives, and ran less than two total minutes off the clock. The Saints punted the ball back to the Pats with 1:20 left, and Brady had the ball at his own 30-yard line.

From there, it was predictable. Brady went 5-of-7 on the subsequent drive, hitting Thompkins with a perfect strike over cornerback Jabari Greer to decide the game.

“We were kind of paying attention to the clock and we were trying to get some yardage and possibly get a first down,” Saints head coach Sean Payton said. “We were getting a heavy front with the risk of throwing it and the clock stopping. So, we can wrestle with that for a while, but they made the stops when they needed to, got the ball back and made plays. Next question.”

Few who watched the game until then would have predicted a New England win. Brady completed 25-of-43 passes for 265 yards,  one interception and no touchdowns before the dagger at the end, in a game that featured far too many drops from his inexperienced and oft-maligned receiver corps. The Pats stayed in the game with two touchdown runs from Stevan Ridley, three field goals from Stephen Gostkowski and an outstanding defensive effort. Cornerback Aqib Talib led the way on defense, shutting out Saints tight end Jimmy Graham and providing blanket coverage until  he suffered a hip injury in the third quarter. Graham also hurt his left ankle in the game.

Brady, who was sacked five times, threw some questionable passes, and some decent throws to some guys who didn’t quite know what to do with them, but he is his own narrative — when it counted, and his team needed it, Brady did what he does quite well. The touchdown pass was the 342nd of Brady’s career, tying him with Fran Tarkenton for fourth all-time.

“I was proud of the way we hung in there and never stopped fighting.” Brady said after the game. “There was little margin for error there at the end based on the situation we were in, and guys really made some great catches.”

As for Saints defensive coordiantor Rob Ryan … well, one look says it all.

Robryan

53 comments
SugarBearGotJobbed55
SugarBearGotJobbed55

One Pats fan trying not to be too irrational:

1) I think the Saints are a (slightly) better team than the Pats AT THIS TIME.

2) I think Gallette WAS held on the winning touchdown play.

3) Not at all clear whether he would have disrupted the pass or not.

4) Stills pushed off on his touchdown more than Thompkins did on his -- the officials have a certain 'threshold' below which they don't call OPI.

5) Sometimes  a call or non-call does lose or win a game for you.  Example:  Raiders in 1976 (eventual Super Bowl winners) beat Patriots b/o a phantom roughing-the-passer call (out of nowhere) against Raymond Hamilton in the opening round of the Playoffs.  There are many others.

6) Generally speaking, bad officiating calls even out.  But they hurt at the time, and sometimes 37 years later!

7) Saints and other NFL fans don't give Brady enough credit.  He's doing a pretty good job with what he has to work with this year.  And he's a pretty polite guy who's never been arrested or implicated in domestic violence or sexual assault.  I don't get all the hate.  You'd like him better if he acted like some sub-human animal?


historyphdguy
historyphdguy

It is difficult to win at Gillette Stadium as Brady and the Patriots are a great home team. The Saints struggled but fought back to take the lead at the end of the game. Brady took advantage of the mugging of Junior Galette to throw the TD. (The video replay showed Galette in a choke hold so it wasn't subtle) While some sophomoric Patriots apologists will claim that the blown holding call had no impact on the game are simply lying to themselves. Who Dat Nation knows these kind of calls or no calls happen and there is nothing you can do about it other than point it out so the NFL can educate  and/or sanction the officiating unit for future games. There were other poor, missed & erroneous calls made by this officiating crew but that blown no call at the end was the nail in the coffin. There is no excuse for such poor officiating in the NFL. It is extremely difficult to go into Foxboro and defeat the Patriots and the officiating crew at the same time. No conspiracy theories for me as the refs are human and who knows what was going through their minds to cause such errors. It is just difficult to accept when some of these blown calls were just so blatant and going in favor of the Pats. The Saints will bounce back and make the adjustments needed to be successful for the final 10 games of the season. 

jbc123
jbc123

Tom Brady, God's other Son.

saterley
saterley

Yeah, those cry baby Saints fans using an illegal choke hold as an excuse for the loss. It's much more manly to bawl that some juvenile curse was the excuse for decades of losses. Just remember, what goes around comes around.

My2cents2
My2cents2

Saints fans, get over it.. You're showing your true colors of being sore losers. Maybe revisit how to effectively run down the clock?

FredFlintsone
FredFlintsone

Thought saints had that one in the bag till Brady pulled an Elway on them. - his 4 starting receivers from last season hes probably on his way to his best yr ever

Jon8
Jon8

What a comeback!! Great game! As Fox is posting what the Division standings will look like with the Pat's loss and Ryan is celebrating on the sidelines, a funny thing happened on the way to the Saints win! They forgot to finish it! They forgot about Brady!

Ryan's look of a seasick man looking at a plate of oysters, said it all!

tom o
tom o

Breaking my heart to see grossly overrated drama queen Ryan emote for the cameras

Doh
Doh

"Talib...providing blanket coverage throughout."

 Except for the majority of the second half when he was injured...

K-Jun
K-Jun

Must  have been AFC officials or great fans of the Pats officiating this game. Saints receivers were mauled before the ball got there but never any calls. Pitiful calls against the Saints defense based on what the Patriots were allowed to get away with on defense. 

To cap it all off, did you see the blatant holding call by the Patriots lineman on the final touchdown. If you did not see it you are as blind as the officials. It was right there in full screen showing the Patriots lineman choking and bending over the Saints defensive lineman. It was so blatant it had to be seen by the official but he did not want to make Brady try again to win the game. 

Sure it sound like sour grapes. Well, it is because the officials as usual control the game and help decide who wins. They certainly were on the side of Gisele, Oh, I mean Tom this day.  

Tvan
Tvan

If not for the head lock on Junior Galette on that last drive, he sacks Brady and game over.  Also, no offensive pass interference against Thompkins when he pushed off for the game winning TD.  But yeah, outside of these overlooked calls, the zebras were ok.

jakkbauerCTU
jakkbauerCTU

@historyphdguy No sir. You are a bitter loser and the TD at the end was clean as was the play made on Galette. You NO fans will find any excuse but the truth is you got beat by the best there ever was. No shame in that who dat.

DonaldMoor
DonaldMoor

People sure treat the spoiled brat like such. I love to see him pout when he looses.

DonaldMoor
DonaldMoor

Remeber that when some horrible officiating goes against your puts. Won't happen... we'll just invent a new rule on the fly... the brady tuck rule come to mind? What come around goes around.... and I can't wait to see your puts on the receiving end of some horrible officiating.

Ty5
Ty5

@EavesLandry   the ball was out of his hand already!

get over it......

EavesLandry
EavesLandry

@Jon8 Dude the refs gave your pats so many ways to win it wasnt funny. Horrible officiating .

EricAnderson1
EricAnderson1

It's going to be alright sweetie. Would you like a tissue to dry your eyes? Here, your mascara is running...

Tacchan
Tacchan

A sour grape is sour grape. Officiating IS part of the game. It is always easy to point finger at something whenever your team loses. They had plenty of opportunities, but didn't capitalized on it. It's a team effort, not just officiating. Let me know if you need a kleenex to go with your sour grapes.

Moemacpete
Moemacpete

Waaaahhhhh........have some pride man, act like you got a pair.

JeremyJanishewski
JeremyJanishewski

@K-Jun That is one of the most pathetic things I have ever read on a sports forum. The Saints did nothing for the first half and they lost. grow up and man up loser.

Doh
Doh

@Tvan Like there was no pushoff on the Stilts TD, right?


Officiating calls go both ways. Good teams (and good fans) overcome them.

thelastholdout
thelastholdout

@Tvan Because it's always super classy to blame a win on blown calls instead of one team outplaying the other.


Give credit where it's due. Brady and the Patriots are a very, very good team.

Jay P
Jay P

@Tvan How about the holding many times the Saints offensive line did to Jones and Ninokovich? I guess you are you blind to any penalties that are not called against your team. That's ok. Just blame the refs every time you lose a game.

jbc123
jbc123

@DonaldMoor  The kid was a sixth round pick, who shared time at Michigan, and was a back up during his first years in the league. If you knew anything about the fund raising, family guy version of Brady, you couldn't possibly call him  a "spoiled  brat". Jealousy is not attractive.

saterley
saterley

Everything had to go wrong for the Saints to lose this game, including that last horrible no call. Would love to see the Saints meet the Pats in the Super Bowl on a neutral field, but if the Pats nearly lost that game at home with all the breaks they had, they are not very good, and they are now due for some bad calls.

DonaldMoor
DonaldMoor

Was not. If the hoke hold wasn't applied, then brady was either sacked or his throw was disrupted. This was blatant and not at all entertaining. Nothing to be boastful about winning a game in this fashion. If the game was officiated straight up, the saints win hands down.

historyphdguy
historyphdguy

 @Ty5 @EavesLandry Only a Patriots apologist would try to claim that this wasn't a blatant offensive holding penalty or your previous career was writing stories for Pravda. 

IreneDubois
IreneDubois

@Ty5 you need to get your eyes checked he still had the ball..

Ty5
Ty5

@EavesLandry @Jon8  

 No one ever takes the "horrible officials" route......don't be that guy.

DonaldMoor
DonaldMoor

No. Brady does not win this without a lot of help from the zebras.

LolPats
LolPats

@jbc123 @DonaldMoor How about the girl he impregnated and then abandoned so he could go be with the supermodel that looks like a man when not wearing makeup?  Total class, amirite.  John Edward Thomas says hi, as well.

jakkbauerCTU
jakkbauerCTU

@DonaldMoor Moore, lol. Dude you are so bitter its sad. The game was won square and there was no illegal holding. You are just making excuses but you got beat by the best there ever was. Who dat.

jakkbauerCTU
jakkbauerCTU

@DonaldMoor Remember that BS field goal last year for the Ravens? yeah pats never get bad calls... deal with it loser your team lost. see you in the super bowl if you make it. the call was clean there was no hold

DonaldMoor
DonaldMoor

No... pats fans never have to worry about horrible officiating... it never happens to them. In fact, new rules are created to benefit them. Remember the brady tuck rule?