Tom Brady and the Patriots overcome a slow first-quarter and defeat the Denver Broncos 16-3 in Mile High.
Tom Brady ended the first-quarter 0-6 passing for only the second time in his career but he picked up the pace after that and ended the game completing 16 of 32 passes for 188 yards with a passer rating of 68.2. The Patriots were able to come up with a huge run game today, outrushing Denver 136 yards to 58, behind a 95-yard day from Dion Lewis. LeGarrette Blount was able to punch in New England’s only touchdown of the day from the 1-yard line for his 15th of the season; a single-season franchise record. Special teams did their job as well as Stephen Gostkowski made 3/3 field goals and Ryan Allen continuously pinned the Broncos inside the 10-yard line with tremendously accurate punts.
Trevor Siemian had his struggles as well ending the game 25 of 40 passing for 282 yards and a 73.1 passer rating and 1 interception. Siemian made a terrible decision on a pass attempt to Emmanuel Sanders and Patriots cornerback Logan Ryan took advantage of it and got the pick that set up LeGarrette Blount’s touchdown. New England’s defense held Denver to only 3 points that came on a field goal from Brandon McManus in the 1st quarter. The Broncos had two other turnovers as well coming off two fumbles from Jordan Norwood; one being a muffed punt on what would have been Denver’s first possession of the game.
Both quarterbacks had their struggles in this game but a solid effort from the defense and special teams, helped the Patriots steal this win and give Denver little hope of making the playoffs. In the process, New England clinches an NFL-record 8th straight AFC east title as they lock up their playoff spot along with a first round bye. This is Tom Brady and Bill Belichick’s 14th division title in 16 seasons together.