Game Balls & Goats: Week 1

Each Week we hand out our Game Balls and Goats awards for performances over the weekend. Here are Week One's choices. Feel free to send us yours.

Game Balls & Goats: Week One    

Each week Patriots Insider staffers hand out their Game Balls (good things) and Goats (not good things) for performances on the weekend's Patriots game.  Fans are encouraged to share their own GB&G using the link below.

Week One: Patriots 38 – Dolphins 24


Tom Brady Brady set new records on Monday night vs the Dolphins by racking up 517 passing yards vs Miami's defense.  The performance put him in the history books as the 5th highest passing performance in NFL History.  He set both career high and franchise records with the performance.  Brady completed 32 of 48 passes to 8 different Patriots targets for four touchdowns with just  one interception.

Wes Welker Welker's 99.5 yard catch and run in the fourth quarter turned a difficult situation into a near knockout blow for the Dolphins.   Welker made a move to get past Dolphins receiver Bennie Sapp, caught the ball then turned back to stiffarm Sapp away from making the tackle.  He finished with 9 catches for 160 yards and 2 touchdowns.

Patriots offensive line – After the team suffered injuries to players at multiple positions including RG, and C, the replacements stepped up to help protect Brady long enough for their leader to shred the Dolphins secondary.  

Honorable Mention(s):

Aaron HernandezHernandez made a heck of a couple of catches in the game.  He hardly resembles a tight end at this point. He finished with 7 receptions for 103 yards and a touchdown.

Rob GronkowskiJust barely behind longtime Patriot Deion Branch's performance, Gronkowsk gave the Dolphins secondary fits when the other receivers weren't doing so.

Devin McCourty despite allowing Brandon Marshall 7 receptions for over 100 yards, McCourty fought tooth and nail with Marshall all night, making life difficult for the Dolphins wideout.


Patriots Secondary – The Dolphins offense was able to roll up impressive statistics even after having the game move out of reach.  Of Miami's 488 total net yards, 390 came through the air.

Injury Bug – The injury bug came out Monday night and bit Dan Koppen (among others).  Koppen's ankle was rolled up at one point in the 1st half, sidelining the Patriots center for an undetermined period of time.  Sebastian Vollmer's back was acting up, forcing him to sit out the game.  Both injures, on top of the ones previously noted, make the offensive line depth a real concern.

Monday night hype –
It's football, and yes it is Monday night, but do we need pictures of that many celebrities watching the game.  More attention to the game particulars would have been nice.

Dishonorable Mentions(s):

Reggie Bush Hype Machine – Bush played on Monday night, but you would hardly know it.  Bush had 20 touches (11 runs, 9 catches), but failed to become the primary offensive threat for Miami that many pundits claimed he would be.
Chad Ochocinco One catch all night for Chad on Brady's career-best outing?  Then Ocho's illegal formation ruined a 41-yard pass play to Rob Gronkowski  on New England's second drive.

Agree / Disagree with ours?
Submit your GB&G choices here
(or read what others have said.)

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