Commentary

Patriots on historic scoring run

Updated: November 23, 2012, 2:25 PM ET
By Jeremy Lundblad | ESPNBoston.com

On the heels of a 49-19 destruction of the New York Jets, let's try to put the New England Patriots' recent scoring surge into perspective.

108 points in two games: Following a 59-point outburst on Sunday, the Patriots scored 49 points on Thanksgiving. In doing so, they became the first team since the 2002 Chiefs with back-to-back efforts of at least 49 points.

But more impressively, New England's two-game total of 108 points is the third highest in NFL history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Only the 1950 Los Angeles Rams (135 points) and 1948 Chicago Cardinals (112) have scored more points over consecutive games.

Of course, the Patriots did so in the span of just five days. Elias says that the previous record for points over five or fewer days was 87 by the 1997 Detroit Lions.

190 points in four games: The Patriots have now scored 190 points over their past four games. That's more than eight teams have scored all season.

As the team's official Twitter account noted, it's also nine more points than the Patriots scored in the entire 1991 season.

According to Elias, only two teams have scored more points over a four-game stretch. Again, you have to go back over 60 years to find them: 1948 Cardinals (195 points) and 1950 Rams (208).

35 points in second quarter: New England scored more points in the second quarter Thursday (35) than 10 teams have had in a full game this season.

Ironically, the outburst came after a scoreless first quarter. Only one team has ever had more points in the second quarter after not scoring in the first. In 1945, the Packers scored 41 second-quarter points after a scoreless first quarter.

Since the 1970 merger, only one team has scored more than 35 in any quarter. That was the 1980 Rams, who put up 37 against the Packers.

Three years ago against the Titans, the Patriots became the first team in 26 years to score 35 in a quarter. Now they've done it twice in span of four seasons.

(Side note: It was a tough day for the Ryan brothers, who saw their respective teams allow a combined 63 points in the second quarter alone.)

Three touchdowns in under a minute It started with Shane Vereen's 83-yard touchdown catch, the longest by a Patriots' running back since Craig James had a 90-yard touchdown reception in 1985.

Steve Gregory returned a fumble for a touchdown 43 seconds later.

Then, just nine seconds later, Julian Edelman brought back another fumble, just the third time the Patriots have returned multiple fumbles for a touchdown.

In 53 seconds, the Patriots scored three touchdowns.

Amazingly, that's not unprecedented.

According to Elias, this is the third time since the 1970 merger that a team has scored three touchdowns in under a minute.

The 2002 Seattle Seahawks scored three touchdowns in 52 seconds against the Minnesota Vikings. In 1998, the Atlanta Falcons needed only 49 seconds to reach the end zone three times against the Carolina Panthers.

Quick hits: The Patriots have won 19 straight games in the second half of the regular season. According to Elias, that's the longest streak over the past 25 seasons.

• Since the 1970 merger, only two teams have had three 49-point games in a season: the 2007 Patriots and 2012 Patriots.

• Since 1940, this was the first game to finish with a score of 49-19, according to Pro Football Reference.

• Edelman has four touchdowns in his past two games, after scoring four in his first three and a half seasons.

• Edelman is the first player since Bullet Bob Hayes (1968) to score touchdowns on a reception and a return in consecutive games, according to Elias.

Jeremy Lundblad

ESPN Stats and Information

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