A good win, but a costly win for the Patriots tonight.
Good in that if you closed your eyes for a minute, you might think Tom Brady was leading this team to a 41-7 victory over Denver. Matt Cassel still took too many big hits (6 sacks, 11 hurries), but he converted on enough big plays to make a difference. Plus, Randy Moss stepped up when Champ Bailey went down with a groin injury, scoring twice and disco dancing with the crowd. And the defense made plays, forcing fumbles and stealing interceptions, putting the offense in a good position to succeed.
Bad in that Sammy Morris, after setting a career high in rushing yards for a game (138, in just one half!), had to leave with an injury. And that wasn’t even the worst of it. Rodney Harrison’s knee bent violently during the last play of the third quarter. He was carted off, and could be seen mouthing “I’m done.” If he is out for the season (and possibly done for his career), that is a HUGE loss for a secondary that is already struggling to make plays.
As crazy as all that sounds, here’s the real shocker: Bill Belichick walked out for his post-game press conference with a grin a mile wide. When does THAT ever happen?