Sunday 23 September 2018

Patriots produce stunning comeback

 

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Photo credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Photo credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Gerard Hughes

Despite being 10 points down with nine minutes remaining and missing one of their best players, the New England Patriots produced another one of their famous comebacks to clinch a place in the Super Bowl in two weeks' time.

The 24-20 result was tough on the Jacksonville Jaguars who would have been a long way down the pre-season list of team likely to be in a Super Bowl.

However, with Blake Bortles again answering his many critics at quarterback and their defence producing a typically dominant display, they found themselves 20-10 ahead with just over half of the final quarter remaining.

As he has done so often, however, that was when Brady got to work.

First, he converted a 3rd & 18 near halfway which extended the drive and they narrowed the gap to three, 20-17, when James White ran into the endzone for a touchdown.

A defensive stop following the ensuing kick-off forced the Jaguars to punt and, with great field position, there looked to be only one winner.

The winning score came from Danny Amendola who belied his small stature with a catch way above his head following a bullet-like throw from Brady.

The Jaguars tried to get the winning touchdown, however, couldn't get through the Patriots defence as Bill Belichick's men earned a spot in the Minnesota showpiece.

The one concern, however, was an injury to Rob Gronkowski who was ruled out of the game with concussion after a fearsome first-half hit.

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