Sunday, November 22, 2009
High five for running back Maroney
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Running back Laurence Maroney became the first Patriot in more than a decade to record a rushing touchdown in five consecutive games after scoring a pair in Sunday's 31-14 triumph over the Jets at Gillette Stadium.
The last back to score a rushing touchdowns in five or more consecutive games was Robert Edwards, who logged six from Sept. 7-Oct. 19, 1998. Curtis Martin holds the team record with touchdowns in seven consecutive games from Oct. 13-Nov. 24, 1996. Martin and Horace Ivory also had five-game streaks to match Maroney's current mark.
What's more, Maroney tied his career high with two scores, finding the end zone twice for the third time in his career. The other two games: Dec. 27, 2007 vs. the Giants and Oct. 1, 2006 vs. the Bengals.
Maroney finished with 77 yards on 22 carries. He has 455 yards on 116 carries (3.92 yards per carry) with six touchdowns for the season.
"You have to keep a balance to keep the defense on their heels a little bit," said center Dan Koppen. "Changing it up on [the Jets] really helped us and the coaches did a really good job with play-calling today and [quarterback Tom] Brady sat back in the pocket and did what he could."
Maroney did fumble the ball away for the second time in as many weeks, surprising considering he now has three fumbles over four pro seasons. (Before last week, he hadn't lost a fumble since his rookie year.) Maroney atoned for the turnover with second- and fourth-quarter scores.
"Laurence is a competitor, he's a great player," said tackle Mark LeVoir, who filled in for Sebastian Vollmer at left tackle in the second quarter when Vollmer left with a head injury. "As you saw today, he ran hard, as all of our running backs did."
Maroney politely declined to talk to the media after the game, noting he didn't want to jinx his recent trend of solid games. Why mess with what works?