Brady bounces back against Raiders
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP)
Oct. 2, 2011
Tom Brady grew up in the Bay Area rooting for Joe Montana so it was
only fitting that in his first game back here in nine years he passed
the Hall of Famer on an exclusive list.
Brady bounced back from a four-interception performance by throwing for
two touchdowns to pass Montana on the career list and committing no
turnovers to help the Patriots beat the mistake-prone Oakland Raiders
"I'll never be in Joe's category," said Brady, who was at Candlestick
Park in 1982 when Montana and Dwight Clark connected on "The Catch."
"We throw the ball a lot more than they threw it back then. It's much
more of a passing league now than it's ever been. Every one of those
touchdowns was important today, so it was fun. It was fun to be back
out there after last week."
Wes Welker caught nine passes for 158 yards and a score, BenJarvus Green-Ellis and Stevan Ridley added rushing touchdowns and the Patriots
(3-1) played a mostly mistake-free game after last week's surprising
loss in Buffalo.
"It's always big to bounce back," said Welker, who has 40 catches for
616 yards through four games.
"We had the letdown last week and we got a bounce-back from that and
coming on the road into a hostile environment, it's a big win for us.
It was good to see."
This time the interception that changed the game was made by New
England instead of thrown by Brady.
Patrick Chung got a gift-wrapped pick in the end zone late in the first
half when Jason Campbell inexplicably threw the ball right to the
safety with no receiver in the area for the Raiders (2-2).
"It was just a bonehead play," Campbell said. "I was just going to
throw the ball out of bounds, then I start running around trying to
make a play."
Campbell threw another interception early in the fourth quarter to
325-pound defensive lineman Vince Wilfork as the Raiders were unable to
give the energized sellout crowd much to cheer about after the opening
The Raiders committed nine penalties for 85 yards, including a pair of
personal fouls on New England's opening drive by former Patriots star
But the biggest mistake was the one made by Campbell at the end of the
The Raiders were at the New England 6 and in position to take a 17-14
lead when Campbell stepped up in the pocket and threw the ball directly
The Patriots drove for a 44-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski in
the closing seconds of the half. New England then took the opening
kickoff of the second half down the field for a score on Ridley's
33-yard run. By the time Campbell took his next snap, the Raiders
"It cost us. It cost our team," Campbell said. "It's something I don't
usually do. Unfortunately, it happened. And from that point on, it kind
of stirred the momentum. We just pretty much were going tit for tat at
that point. You're going against a team like New England, an offensive
juggernaut, you can't have mistakes like that."
Oakland settled for a field goal deep in New England territory late in
the third quarter after the officials overturned a pass interference
call against the Patriots.
New England answered with another touchdown drive capped by Brady's
4-yard pass to Deion Branch that made it 31-13 and gave him 274 career
TDs, passing Montana for ninth place all time. That also tied Peyton
Manning's record of 13 straight games with at least two TD passes.
New England's much-maligned defense did enough despite losing star
linebacker Jerod Mayo in the first half to a knee injury and allowing
According to multiple reports, Mayo suffered a left MCL injury. He is
expected to miss about a month, as reported by WBZ-TV in Boston.
The Patriots held an opponent to under 20 points for the first time
this season, a drastic change from last week's 34-31 loss to the Bills.
Darren McFadden, the NFL's leading rusher, had 75 yards on 14 carries.
Campbell finished 25 for 39 for 344 yards, but the Raiders only made it
into the end zone once before Campbell's 6-yard TD pass to Denarius Moore with 28 seconds left.
Brady, who threw for a record 1,327 yards the first three games, needed
to do much less against the Raiders. He completed 16 of 30 passes as
New England did plenty of damage on the ground with Ridley rushing for
97 yards and Green-Ellis adding 75.
"We had a good day running the ball so that always helps balance things
up," New England coach Bills Belichick said. "We always want to have
balance and we were able to have it today. We blocked well, we ran
Buoyed by a sellout crowd and big-game atmosphere, the Raiders came out
fast with Campbell completing four of five passes for 57 yards in the
opening drive to set up a 28-yard field goal by Sebastian Janikowski.
But that emotion also hurt the Raiders with Seymour being called for
unnecessary roughness for throwing Brady to the ground after a delay of
game penalty and a facemask later on a TD drive.
"They said they blew the whistle," Seymour said. "But it was so loud I
never heard the whistle. That's still no excuses. We have to play
better. We just couldn't get off the field on third down."
Game notes: The Raiders held a moment of silence before the game for
Myra Kraft, the late wife of New England owner Robert Kraft. ... New
England scored at least 30 points for the 12th straight game. ...
Oakland had 19 points on six trips inside the New England 30.
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