Filly Files: Buffalos and Dolphins on the Menu

<p>Michelle Vitagliano has experienced what one would consider blasphemy for sports fans in New England. She went out to eat and drink at a local establishment and watch the game, but she had to negotiate with the staff just to get them to put the game on. Are we the only ones who think the Patriots Bills game was more exciting that soccer? How 'bout passing some of those Buffalo chips down the bar buddy?</p> <p>Enjoy this week's Filly Files with Michelle's take on the game.</p>

If Sunday's Pats game against the Bills went anything like my experience trying to watch it, the result would have been a complete disaster as opposed to just a game of oddities. Is it too much to expect that any respectable bar you go to on a Sunday during football season should have the game on? Especially if it involves the championed New England Patriots… and you're in a bar… in NEW ENGLAND???? They had to know there were TWO Boston teams playing on Sunday!

If I were the Phantom Gourmet of good bars, I would have thought the Board of Health should have shut it down! Not because it was dirty, but because I had a minor heart attack when I walked in at kickoff to find that none of the six TVs were even turned on! In a bar full of mostly men, I was the one asking the staff to turn the game on. Worse still, shortly into the second quarter, and without warning, the bartender decided to change the channel on all the TVs to show the Manchester United game! If David Beckham were still playing for Manchester United, I wouldn't watch him over the Pats, especially when they're up against Drew Bledsoe (however I would recommend watching Man U. in your spare time keeping an eye out for Wayne Rooney, the next Pele of soccer).

Whew - I needed to vent before I get into my thoughts on the game. I guess a good start would be that in the end, I'm just glad that the TVs weren't turned off in the fourth quarter because that seemed to be the best part of the game with the Pats scoring two touchdowns. And although they won in the end, there were times in the first, and what I saw of the second quarter, that I thought, this isn't going to be an easy 18th[victory]. Like they have done time and time again, the Pats pulled it off and shuffled back from Buffalo with a 31-17 win leaving Buffalo's new head coach Mike Mularky with another "L" on his record.

Between the injured ref and the 21 combined penalties from both teams, it wasn't your average game. Then again, the Pats aren't your average team and as Tom Brady displayed, he's no average quarterback. Although the Pats didn't look like a championship team until the last quarter, Brady completed 17 of 30 passes and made Bledsoe look like, well, lets just say Brady didn't get sacked once compared to Bledsoe's seven (twice in the last few minutes of the game). He's one of the most patient quarterbacks I've ever watched, and isn't afraid to get hit. But Brady is only part of a great football team with guys like Tedy Bruschi who had two sacks, Richard Seymour who was there to recover a Bill's fumble for a touchdown and Corey Dillon, who, despite not having his best game yet, still managed to score a touchdown in the first quarter. I think what impresses me most about this team is that after every game, they're always talking about how they need to improve in order to make this another successful season.

Orchard Park drew a loud crowd on Sunday and understandably so. The Buffalo Bills crushed us last time we played them on their own field, Drew Bledsoe used to be one of ours, and even though he was part of that Patriots Super Bowl Parade last winter, Lawyer Milloy now dresses in a Buffalo uniform too (although he missed his third game Sunday due to a knee injury).

But despite the oddities of the game, the Pats kept focused and made sure Buffalo didn't stand in the way of their perfect record so far this season. And after our performance last year at Buffalo, this game may have been odd, but we got even! I'm looking forward to playing the Bills next month on our turf. In the meantime, this coming weekend is a big one when the 0-4 Miami Dolphins, who lost 9-17 to the New York Jets on Sunday, pays us a visit. Miami isn't so hot this year (Ricky Williams' retirement) but as far as records go, this is a big game as the Pats have a chance to beat the league's record of 18 straight victories. Wouldn't it be nice to squish the fish AND break a new record all in one day! Not to mention, we haven't seen a home game in almost three weeks. Bring it on Miami!

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