Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Brady calm and deadly in comeback game Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Graham
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Right after the Buffalo Bills expanded their lead over the New England Patriots to 11 points with 5:32 left in Monday night's game, the flat-screen TVs in the Gillette Stadium press box showed a shot of Tom Brady and Randy Moss on the sideline.
Brady vs. Buffalo's Defensive Formations
vs. 5+ DB
What struck me is how emotionless they looked, almost apathetic, disconnected from the growing likelihood they would suffer a colossal upset loss at home and in front of a national audience.
But maybe Brady and Moss knew something nobody else did.
"We just had to settle down and focus and have that tunnel vision," Moss said of that moment.
Brady's legacy was cemented long ago, but his performance in the closing minutes of New England's season-opening 25-24 victory added to his long list of amazing memories.
"You see Tom coming off the sideline and he comes into the huddle, talking about 'We're going to win this game,' " Moss said. "And when you have guys like that saying positive things and then going out there and making it happen, you have to have your hopes high and really think positive."
Brady, in his first game back since having two knee ligaments reattached, orchestrated two touchdown drives, the second courtesy of Leodis McKelvin's fumble on the kickoff return in between.
Get this: Brady completed 12 of 14 passes for 112 yards and two touchdown tosses to Benjamin Watson.
Moss, speaking to reporters for the first time since May, was asked if there was another quarterback "more clutch" than Brady.
"No, man," Moss said. "Ya’ll seen it. I don't have to speak on it. What else do you want me to say? We play some great situational football, and Coach Belichick puts us through it week in and week out.
Brady vs. Bills
First 8 Drives
Last 2 Drives
"We started off a little slow and in a certain sense, it looked like we were trying to feel our way through it. And once we started playing a little bit more, especially after halftime, I think we settled down and really started executing our game plan."
Moss tied a career-high with 12 receptions (nine in the second half) for 141 yards. It was the 60th 100-yard game of Moss' career, second all-time to Jerry Rice's 76.
"The main thing I can go home and hang my hat on is the victory," Moss said. "We did some good things out there, but I think coach is really going to give it to us Wednesday about the things we did out there."