FOXBOROUGH, Mass. —
Now that looked like the real Tom Brady.
The two-time NFL MVP had his best game of an inconsistent season and the New England Patriots used one of the best offensive performances in their history to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers 55-31 on Sunday.
Brady threw for season highs of 432 yards and four touchdowns and Rob Gronkowski had a career-high nine receptions.
The 55 points were the most scored in an NFL game this season and the most ever scored against the Steelers (2-6).
Brady had 252 yards passing in the first half, more than he had in five of his other eight games for New England (7-2).
And 119 of those came on seven catches by Gronkowski in his third game since missing the first six recovering from surgeries on his left forearm and back.
The star tight end caught his first touchdown of the season, a 19-yarder, as the Patriots took a 14-0 lead with 4:30 gone in the second quarter.
New England piled up 610 yards, third most in team history. Pittsburgh wasted a solid performance by Ben Roethlisberger, who threw for 400 yards and four touchdowns with two interceptions.
Until Sunday, Brady had been having a mediocre season.
In fact, he threw for just 116 yards a week earlier in a 27-17 win over the Miami Dolphins.
Part of the problem was communication with his rookie receivers and the absence of Gronkowski. Brady also was uncharacteristically inaccurate on his throws.
But he was sharp all day, completing 23 of 33 passes against a defense that let receivers run free for several long receptions, including a 57-yarder to Danny Amendola that set up Stephen Gostkowski’s 20-yard field goal that made it 17-3.
Brady threw scoring passes of 34 yards to Amendola, and 17 and 81 yards to Aaron Dobson, while Stevan Ridley rushed for 115 yards and two touchdowns.
The Patriots led 24-10 at halftime before the Steelers tied it on their first two series of the third quarter on Roethlisberger’s touchdown passes to Jerricho Cotchery of 20 and 8 yards.
He added a 6-yarder to Cotchery midway through the fourth quarter that made it 41-31.
But two plays after the kickoff, Brady launched a pass down the left sideline that Dobson caught at the Steelers 40 and carried into the end zone.
LeGarrette Blount got the final touchdown on a 5-yard run with 2:41 left.
Three Patriots had more than 100 yards receiving, Gronkowski with 143, Dobson with 130 and Amendola with 122.
New England scored on its last four possessions of the first half and led 24-10 at intermission before the Steelers tied it.
Roethlisberger turned the ball over twice on his first two series when he fumbled then threw an interception to Devin McCourty that led to Brady’s scoring pass to Amendola.
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. —
Now that looked like the real Tom Brady.
Selig calls replay start ‘remarkable’
Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig says the sport’s new replay system is working well despite a few problems during its first two weeks.
While baseball began video review late in the 2008 season, it was limited to potential home runs and boundary calls. The new system that began March 30 vastly expands the types of plays that managers and umpires can ask to be reviewed at a replay center in New York.
Cardinals roll to a sweep of Eagles
The match only lasted three games, but Logan Herzberger still found the time to post a double-double, notching 14 kills and 18 digs while the Cochranton volleyball team swept Conneaut 25-22, 25-16, 25-18 during Region 1 action on Tuesday.
Unbeaten Panthers need five games to top Bulldogs
Through the first four games, there was no telling which team was undefeated and which team had only one win entering Monday night’s Region 1 volleyball clash between Meadville and Saegertown.
By the fifth and deciding game, the cream rose to the top.
Ogwumike goes No. 1
It was a busy draft night for the Connecticut Sun.
Minutes after taking Chiney Ogwumike with the top pick in the WNBA draft Monday night, the Sun made a blockbuster deal to trade 2012 MVP Tina Charles to the New York Liberty.
Watson pulls away at Augusta to win second green jacket
One of golf’s most exciting players squeezed most of the drama out of the Masters on Sunday. That’s just fine with Bubba Watson.
All he cared about was slipping into that green jacket.
Instead of hitting a 40-yard hook out of a forest of Georgia pines — the signature shot in his playoff victory two years ago — the final act Sunday at Augusta National took place on the 18th green. Watson had a three-shot lead and consulted with his caddie on a 15-foot birdie putt.
Harvick survives shootout for win at Darlington
Kevin Harvick used one of the few weekend missteps to pull out his first Darlington victory.
Harvick was among several veteran drivers fighting for the Nationwide Series win Friday night when rookie Chase Elliott used fresher tires and a strong machine to move from the back of the pack to first place over the final two laps.
Spezza lifts Senators to SO win over Penguins
Jason Spezza scored in the shootout to help the Ottawa Senators beat the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday night and finish the season on a five-game winning streak.
The teams were tied 2-2 after two periods and didn’t score in the third or overtime.
Brewers sweep Pirates, win ninth straight
Kyle Lohse was eager to top his Milwaukee teammates.
He sure came close.
Lohse came within an out of a complete game, and the Brewers won their ninth straight with a 4-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday.
Ramirez lifts ChiSox over Indians
Alexei Ramirez came up to the plate, ready to swing.
Ramirez hit a two-run homer on the first pitch he saw from John Axford in the ninth inning, rallying the Chicago White Sox over the Cleveland Indians 4-3 on a rainy Sunday.
Watson surges to Masters lead following birdie spree
Bubba Watson won the Masters two years ago with his brand of “Bubba golf,” producing shots of raw skill and wild imagination. His strategy now is to keep it simple, and he is halfway to another green jacket.
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