The Patriots played very well last night, but were done in by a couple of mental errors as well as a visit to the rejuvenation machine by old friend Adam Vinatieri.

Jabar Gaffney dropped an easy touchdown pass on a drive which eventually ended on a field goal, and with the Patriots in range of a late game tying field goal, tight end David Thomas committed an unforgivable personal foul which pushed the Patriots back 15 yards, and basically sealed the game for the Colts. Adam Vinatieri had booted a 52 yard field goal – his longest in over five years – to give the Colts an 18-15 advantage, which turned out to be the final score.

Chris Warner on Patriots Daily has the wrap on this one from Indy.

Christopher Price lines up the 10 Things We Learned Last Night.

Christopher L. Gasper has the above factors plus some questionable decisions dooming the Patriots. Karen Guregian looks at a lost opportunity in Indy last night. Mark Farinella has the Patriots flagged only twice all night, with one being a killer to their chances. Shalise Manza Young looks at one that got away from the Patriots. Rich Garven has the Patriots coming up in the end with less points than they might’ve hoped for.

Michael Felger says that last night was not one of Bill Belichick’s shining moments. Dan Shaughnessy has Belichick getting grilled after the game despite coming in with a great game plan and getting beat by “a couple of freak plays” last night. John Tomase says that the coaches kept the Patriots in the game with their plan coming in, and let the win slip away with some questionable decisions during the game.  Jim Donaldson has Belichick dropping the ball with his in-game decisions last night. Garven says that those head-scratching decisions cost New England the game.

Mike Reiss has the game plans for both teams working out just as they had figured. Young says that the stats look good from the Patriots last night, but the results do not.

Chris Forsberg says that it is very hard to find fault with the performance of Matt Cassel last night. Ron Borges manages to do that, pointing to the lack of a TD pass and Red Zone production from Cassel last night as the difference in the game.

Farinella has David Thomas facing the music for his key penalty. Young says Thomas made no excuses for his actions. Farinella also has Jabar Gaffney talking about his key drop last night. Young has Gaffney saying he simply didn’t make the play when he had to. Ben Swasey has the mistakes proving too costly for the Patriots.

Donaldson feels compelled to remind us that yes, Adam Vinatieri made a few big kicks for the Patriots over the years.  Joe Sullivan and Patrick Dorsey have Vinatieri enjoying his game winning field goal against his old team. Forsberg has a look at the new Lucas Oil Field in Indy. Donaldson also has Peyton Manning continuing his run of success against the Patriots.

Guregian looks at the string of five games ahead which will tell us all we need to know about this Patriots team.

Tomase puts together the Best and worst from last night. Garven has Facts and figures from the game.

Guregian’s notebook has Randy Moss taking issue with the officials last night. Gasper’s notebook has Thomas owning up to his penalty and taking responsibility. Farinella’s notebook says that the Patriots will return to Lucas Oil Field again next season. Young’s notebook has injuries in the secondary hitting both teams.

Celtics

Mark Murphy has Kevin Garnett using his shoes to get his message out. Frank Dell’Apa has Garnett adding soccer to his offseason workout regimen. Tim Weisberg says that Paul Pierce is no longer held down by the history of the Celtics. Jeff Goodman wonders if Ray Allen is all done. Murphy’s notebook has the Celtics needing to work on their free throw shooting.

Bruins/Red Sox/Misc

Fluto Shinzawa has neither the Bruins nor the Stars pleased with the actions of the Stars’ Steve Ott on Saturday night. Joe Haggerty wonders if the big, bad Bruins are back. Rich Thompson has the Bruins defensemen refusing to back down on Saturday night.

Sean McAdam has a look at what Theo Epstein will hope to accomplish at this week’s GM Meetings. Jon Couture chimes in with a 2008 report card for the Red Sox.

David Scott has Bill Simmons once again expressing his unhappiness with ESPN.

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9 thoughts on “Gaffney Drop, Thomas Penalty, Vinatieri Kick Do In Pats

  1. I wonder when Jim Donaldson graduated from the Borges – Tomase School of Hating Belichick…I hope he gets hit by a bus…

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  2. Love or hate belichick, you have to be objective and say last night was not his finest hour. Many of those decisions brought back awful memories of Patriot coaches of the past. So please dont rip the messengers this week when they question the coach…but, unlike previous regimes, this will only be a one week story.

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    1. I agree with Curtis – I don’t have any problem with criticism of the in-game coaching this week. I believe the team did everything that was asked of it this week; it was a good game plan (credit to Belichick and the staff for that) and I think they carried it off well. But the challenge was a terrible call by Belichick (lost a time out for extremely limited upside, and soon they were unable to challenge anything else because of it) and set the wheels in motion for the loss, and the deal was sealed when he decided 4th and a yard was too far for them to convert – even though they did convert on a well executed play that was scrubbed because of Belichick’s error.

      Before we get too pissed though – how many times has Belichick lost a game because of something like this, and what are the chances he will do it again anytime soon?

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  3. I wonder why David Scott relexively assumes that Simmons is in the wrong in nearly every dispute with his editors.

    Scott’s angle on this is bizarre – of course Simmons had to respond to the likely hundreds of angry emails he received when his picks column didn’t appear. I could take or leave Simmons, but the criticism emanating from Hull smells like low tide at Nantasket after a storm.

    It’s apparent that Scott, a writer struggling to make ends meet, is envious of Simmons.

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    1. I think Scott’s point is that Simmons finds the need to whine publically about whatever the problem is with ESPN instead of just handling it internally. It’s also clear from Simmons’ past complaints that he’s a self-important diva. Thankfully it appears that his 15 minutes are almost up.

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  4. Here’s to hoping Simmons goes rogue pretty soon… I would love for him to sign with Foxsports or something like it and finally let out all the criticism for ESPN he has been holding in all these years. Then he can be funny again.

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    1. ESPN has become way too political for my liking, and I think the line of people wanting to dump on the network is a long one.

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  5. I drink as much Belichick “Kool -Aid” as anyone….That being said, even I agree he had a tough night last night…….but I still don’t want to read any analisis of it from the “usual suspects”….

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