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Sunday, September 12, 2010
3 up, 3 down for the Patriots

By Mike Reiss & Mike Rodak

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- A look at three players/units whose performance was up, and three players/units whose performance was down in the Patriots' 38-24 season-opening win over the Bengals:

Up
Patrick Chung --
Safety finished with a team-high 16 tackles and looked like the Patriots' best defensive player in the process, flying around the field and closing with authority.

Gary Guyton/Brandon Tate -- When a team scores on defense and special teams, they are "bonus points," and Guyton delivered with an impressive 59-yard interception return for a touchdown and Tate with a 97-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.

Wes Welker -- In his first regular-season game since tearing his ACL on Jan. 3, Welker had a 5-yard reception on the Patriots' first offensive play and added touchdown catches of 9 and 4 yards. On the 9-yarder, it was a short pass in which he did the hard work after the catch. He finished with a team-high 8 catches for 64 yards. 

Down
Darius Butler --
Second-year cornerback was competitive at times, but was targeted with success in the second half and didn't win the majority of one-on-one battles.

Stephen Gostkowski -- Kicker missed a 47-yard field goal attempt early in the second quarter. He contributed with three touchbacks and a 32-yard field goal, so it wasn't all bad.

(Only two players/units are selected in the "down"category at this time.)