Sunday, January 2, 2011
Patriots records and milestones
By Mike Reiss
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- A look at the records and milestones reached by the Patriots:
1. Belichick and 14 wins. The Patriots finish the season at 14-2, and Bill Belichick becomes the first head coach ever to win at least 14 regular-season games in four separate seasons (2003, 2004, 2007, 2010).
2. Setting turnover record. The Patriots had just 10 turnovers this season (5 fumbles, 5 interceptions), besting the NFL mark for a 16-game season previously set by the Dolphins and Giants in 2008 (both had 13). The Chiefs had 12 turnovers in the strike-shortened 1982 season.
3. Tying record for fewest interceptions. With just five interceptions this season, the Patriots tie the NFL mark for fewest interceptions in a single season. The 1960 Browns, 1966 Packers, 1990 Chiefs and 1990 Giants were the other teams with just five interceptions.
4. Only undefeated team at home in 2010. The Patriots finished 8-0 at home this season, and are the only team in the league to be perfect at home in 2010. It is the fifth time in team history that they have been perfect at home during the regular season (2003, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2010).
5. Edelman sets franchise record with 94-yard punt return. Julian Edelman's 94-yard punt return for a touchdown in the second quarter broke a long-standing franchise record (Mike Haynes, 89 yards, 1976). It was the team's first punt return for a touchdown since Troy Brown's 68-yarder on Jan. 6, 2002.
6. Green-Ellis hits 1,000. Running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis finished the 2010 season with 1,008 rushing yards, becoming the first Patriot to reach 1,000 rushing yards since Corey Dillon had a franchise-record 1,635 rushing yards in 2004.
7. Gronkowski sets franchise mark for rookie TD catches. Rookie tight end Rob Gronkowski caught his 10th touchdown reception of the season, hauling in a 13-yard pass in the first quarter, setting the Patriots record for receiving touchdowns in the process. Randy Vataha and Jim Colclough had the previous mark, with nine apiece. Gronkowski becomes just the fourth Patriots player to record 10 or more touchdown receptions in a season, joining Randy Moss, Stanley Morgan and Colclough.
8. Woodhead sets team record for rushing average. Running back Danny Woodhead finished the season with 97 rushes for 551 yards, and his average of 5.68 yards per carry sets a new team record (minimum 90 attempts). Woodhead topped Don Calhoun's previous team mark of 5.59 yards per carry in 1976, when he had 721 yards on 129 rushes.
9. Team record for turnover differential. The Patriots set a franchise record by finishing the season with a plus-28 turnover differential. The previous best was plus-17 in 2003. The plus-28 mark is the second best since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger, behind only the 1983 Redskins, who had a plus-43 differential. The Patriots were 13-0 this season with a plus turnover differential and are 83-3 since 2002.
10. Eight straight games with 30-plus points ties own record. The Patriots finished the season by scoring 38 points, which helped them tie their own NFL record for most consecutive games with 30 or more points. The 2007 Patriots and 2000 Rams are the only other teams to accomplish that feat. The Patriots are now 61-2 when scoring 30 or more points under Bill Belichick.
11. Brady extends record of 2 TD/0 INT games. Quarterback Tom Brady extended his own NFL record by throwing at least two touchdown passes without an interception in each of the past nine games. Brady passed Don Mereditch's previous record of six straight games with two or more touchdowns and no interceptions (1965-66).
12. Brady just 6th quarterback to throw TD pass in each contest of 16-game season. Tom Brady threw at least one touchdown pass in each game during the regular season, becoming just the sixth player to do so in a 16-game season. The others are Daunte Culpepper (Vikings, 2004), Brett Favre (Packers, 2003), Kurt Warner (Rams, 1999), Dan Marino (Dolphins, 1984 & 1986) and Dave Krieg (Seahawks, 1984).
13. Brady extends own record without an interception. Tom Brady extended his NFL-record interception-free streak to 335 consecutive pass attempts. Brady eclipsed Bernie Kosar's previous record of 308 attempts without an interception last week in Buffalo.
14. Tying team record for non-offensive touchdowns. Julian Edelman's 94-yard punt return for a touchdown was the Patriots' ninth non-offensive touchdown of the season, tying the team record set in 1961.