Patriots - Packers: Game Balls & Goats

The New England Patriots defeated the Green Bay Packers 31 - 27 on Sunday Night in Foxboro. Who did well and who didn't? We tell you in our Game Balls & Goats. Read ours, share yours.

GAME BALLS

Jon Scott:

Kyle Arrington -- Nice INT and return for a touchdown. Arrington played well at times, though he did give up a touchdown. His pick-6 put the Patriots back into the game 21 -17 after the big kickoff return by Connolly.

Dan Connolly -- To see a big guy run that fast and that far was a thing every football fan should enjoy. Impressive how Connolly was able to stay on his feet toward the end. 71-yards KO return, a new OL record.

Late Game Heroics – without the late game heroics, New England could be looking at 11-3 with the Jets breathing down their neck. Instead, New England maintains its slim playoff lead.

Honorable Mentions: Devin McCourty, Dane Fletcher, Vince Wilfork


James Christensen:

Devin McCourty – Right now, he is easily the best defender on the Patriots team, and that is with all due respect to Vince Wilfork and Jerod Mayo. A sack, a key tackle for loss, and some solid coverage while banged up cemented our vote for DROY.

Aaron HernandezWhat a matchup nightmare. The "ninja" scored two touchdowns, beating Charles Woodson on one of them. He is a player that has to be accounted for on every play.

Dan Connolly – That was awesome. Get well Big Dan.

Honorable Mentions: Kyle Arrington, Tully Banta-Cain (Sack), Dane Fletcher

GOATS

Jon Scott:

Third Down Defense -- A look at the Patriots defense on third down is all you need to know. The group allowed the Packers to convert 11 of 19 attempts (58%), to illustrate their league leading worst ranking in that category.

First Half offense -- For some reason the Patriots weren't able to string things together at times in this game. It took a huge runback by Connolly and a Pick-6 by Arrington to get the score close.

Time of Possession -- The Patriots offense left their defense out there for 40:28 of the game. The Patriots offense ran just 43 plays.

James Christensen:

Tackling – Gary Guyton and Rob Ninkovich looked lost at times, while others looked nearly unwilling to stop some of the Packers runners. That was atrocious.

Brandon MeriweatherWe would like to meet his geometry teacher from high-school. His terrible angles cost the Patriots another long touchdown.

Penalties – After five relatively clean games, the Patriots dirtied up the field with seven penalties, including three for first downs. That is unacceptable.

Dishonorable Mentions: Gary Guyton, Tully Banta-Cain (Penalty)

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