A few random thoughts on the NFL and the Patriots …

– I’m having trouble following the line of reasoning that the NFL could not suspend Ndamukong Suh because it is impossible to decipher whether or not there was intent – yet at the same time they felt there was enough evidence to fine him $30,000 for the kick to the family jewels of Matt Schaub.

First of all, there’s no way that you can convince me that it was inadvertent. The leg is bent at the knee, whips around, and suddenly flexes straight. Momentum does not make your leg suddenly straighten out, nor does it cause your ankle to suddenly bend out, reaching for the desired target. Second of all, considering his past history and previous warnings you place the guy on a zero, or near-zero tolerance policy for this type of infraction.

– As for the various players that have been suspended for Adderall, all I can say is this: are you that dumb? Have you really that unaware to have not noticed other players being suspended for it? What is really galling is that all they have to do is get a prescription for it and report that Rx to the league, and you are in the free and clear. The league won’t respond due to health privacy laws, but it also makes me wonder if some of these ‘confessions’ are phony, and the players were in fact busted for something else. By the same token I’m not buying the inevitable excuse that ‘it must have been in the health supplement I bought at the vitamin store’, or whatever alibi that somebody like Richard Sherman is bound to use.

– The Dolphins are 5-5 against the Patriots in the least ten games in Miami. While I’m very confident the Pats will win Sunday, that stat alone is certainly enough to take this game very seriously. I know the Pats have won four in a row and six of the last seven overall against the Dolphins, but this game being on the road, just before games against the Texans and 49ers does concern me.

– I don’t know if the team will do it, but from this vantage point I thought they should make a waiver claim on former Eagles’ DE Jason Babin – particularly with Jermaine Cunningham being suspended for four games. When it comes time to face better teams, one more quality pass rusher sure would be nice. I am guessing however that some other team will claim him before the Pats get a chance to grab him.



This Day In Patriots History


November 28, 1965:
Boston Patriots 27, New York Jets 23 at Shea Stadium

On a sunny afternoon the Sunday after Thanksgiving, the Patriots came from behind in the 4th quarter to upset Joe Namath and the Jets at Shea Stadium. The win kicked off a nice three-game winning streak at the end of the season for the Pats.

Namath had 101 more yards passing than Babe Parilli did, but Joe Willie was picked off once by Ross O’Hanley and the Pats defense also recovered two key fumbles, while the Pats only turned the ball over once.

The see-saw game had five lead changes, and was won on the fourth and final score of the 4th quarter, a two-yard touchdown pass from Parilli to Tony Romeo.

Jim Colclough had 96 yards receiving and two touchdowns – one from Parilli, and one from backup QB/field goal holder Eddie Wilson. Gino Cappelletti had two field goals, including a 53-yard boot in the 3rd quarter.


November 28, 1971:
Buffalo Bills 27, New England Patriots 20 at War Memorial Stadium

The Bills got their first and only win of the year, upsetting the Pats on O.J. Simpson‘s 4th quarter touchdown.

Carl Garrett ran for 127 yards on 21 carries and added 35 yards receiving. The Patriots twice pulled to within four points in the second half – on a one-yard run by Jim Nance, and then on a 15-yard pass from Jim Plunkett to Ron Sellers – but were unable to get the additional score they needed to take the lead.


November 28, 1976:
New England Patriots 38, Denver Broncos 14 at Schaefer Stadium

Don Calhoun rushed for a career-high 177 yards and Mike Haynes‘ 62-yard punt return for a touchdown highlighted a 24-point 2nd quarter for the Pats, as they cruised to their ninth win of the season in Foxboro.

The Pats took a 7-0 first period lead on a one-yard run by Steve Grogan. In the 2nd quarter John Smith booted a 49-yard field goal, and then Grogan found Al Chandler on a 3-yard touchdown pass. After the Pats defense forced punt, Haynes returned his kick to the house and the rout was on. After that Andy Johnson scored on a one-yard run, and the Pats headed into the locker room at halftime with a 31-0 lead.

Haynes, Sam Hunt and Bob Howard all had interceptions for a Patriots defense that limited Denver to just 189 total yards – while Calhoun and the Pats offense ran for an incredible 332 yards, and had 414 total yards of offense.


November 28, 1982:
New England Patriots 29, Houston Oilers 21

Stanley Morgan caught touchdown passes of 62 yards and 24 yards as the Patriots opened up a big lead, then held on to beat the Oilers.

The Patriots defense had five sacks: two each by Julius Adams and Ken Sims, one by Lester Williams, and one by George Crump that went for a safety when he tackled Archie Manning in the end zone; Roland James also intercepted Manning once.

Steve Grogan had three touchdown passes even though he only threw the ball 16 times, Morgan finished with 122 yards receiving, and Tony Collins ran for 161 yards for the Patriots, who evened their record at 2-2 in the second game after the strike ended.


November 28, 1993:
New York Jets 6, New England Patriots 0 at Foxboro Stadium

Leonard Russell ran for 147 yards for the Patriots, but two turnovers and two missed field goals by Scott Sisson resulted in a fine effort by the Pats defense being wasted.


November 28, 1999:
Buffalo Bills 17, New England Patriots 7 at The Ralph

The Patriots were done in by penalties – 8 for 101 yards – and a bit of Flutie Magic as they lost to the Bills.

For the most part the Pats did a good job of containing Doug Flutie (9 for 16), but he connected twice when it really mattered: a 54-yard touchdown pass to Eric Moulds, and a 31-yard TD to Sam Gash to put Buffalo up 17-0. Drew Bledsoe, who was sacked four times, connected with Terry Glenn on a 45-yard TD to cut the lead to 10, but that was as close as the Pats would get.


November 28, 2002:
New England Patriots 20, Detroit Lions 12 at Ford Field

Tedy Bruschi scored on a 27-yard interception and the Pats cruised to a Thanksgiving Day victory.

Troy Brown had 10 receptions for 111 yards, Antowain Smith ran for 80 yards and a touchdown, and Willie McGinest and Bobby Hamilton joined Bruschi with picks off the Lions’ Joey Harrington.


November 28, 2004:
New England Patriots 24, Baltimore Ravens 3 at Gillette Stadium

The Patriots closed out strong with fourteen 4th quarter points, shutting down the Ravens to improve their record to 10-1.

After three quarters neither team had scored a touchdown, as the Pats led 9-3 on Adam Vinatieri field goals of 28, 40 and 48 yards. Corey Dillon found paydirt with a one-yard run to give the Pats a 17-3 lead, and then Jarvis Green recovered a fumble in the end zone for the final score.

The Pats defense held Baltimore to just 8 first downs in this game, with four sacks (by Tedy Bruschi, Ted Johnson, Roosevelt Colvin and Richard Seymour), one interception (by Randall Gay), and limited Baltimore’s Kyle Boller to 93 passing yards, with only one completion of more than 12 yards; Boller finished with a paltry 2.6 yards per pass attempt (15-35 for 93 yards). On offense Corey Dillon rushed for 123 yards on 30 carries with one touchdown.



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November 28, 1929:
Founder of Motown Records Berry Gordy was born in Detroit

November 28, 1943:
Songwriter and singer Randy Newman was born in New Orleans





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