Patriots

Turning Point: Boogeymen Jamie Collins, Kyle Van Noy give Patriots breathing room with scoop-and-score

Turning Point: Boogeymen Jamie Collins, Kyle Van Noy give Patriots breathing room with scoop-and-score

FOXBORO -- It was late on Thursday when the Boogeymen slipped through a Daniel Jones screen and ruined his night. 

To be fair, his night might've already been ruined to that point. The rookie passer for the Giants had already thrown three interceptions and was generally lost as he tried to figure out the Patriots defense as his team fell, 35-14.

But it was still a one-score game with about 8:30 left when the Giants had the ball and an opportunity to tie. Three plays into their drive, New York faced a third-and-nine against the best third-down defense in football. It did not go well for them. 

For the second time in the game, linebacker Jamie Collins -- who dubbed his fellow linebackers "the Boogeymen" this season -- sniffed out a screen pass, slipped past a block, and forced running back Jon Hilliman to fumble. Linebacker Kyle Van Noy was quickly on the scene to scoop up the football and scramble toward the end zone, diving for the pylon. Initially ruled out of bounds, Van Noy was deemed to have scored upon review.

Following a Mike Nugent extra point, the Patriots had a 28-14 lead and some breathing room on a night when they became so banged up that offensively they struggled to move the football at times against one of the league's worst defenses. 

It was another dominant night from the Patriots defense, save for a 65-yard touchdown pass from Jones to Golden Tate. Van Noy had a sack, Collins had three tackles, and Dont'a Hightower had three tackles of his own before leaving the game with a shoulder injury.

The only other points the Giants scored came on a strip sack fumble return for a touchdown by Markus Golden. 

The Patriots finished with 401 yards of offense and 7.1 yards per pass attempt, but it wasn't an easy haul for them by any means. Opening the game with heavier 22-personnel packages (two backs, two tight ends) and 21-personnel packages (two backs, one tight end), they eventually had to abandon those as tight end Matt LaCosse and fullback Jakob Johnson left the game with injuries. 

That left Tom Brady to throw to Julian Edelman, Jakobi Meyers, Gunner Olszewski, Ryan Izzo and a series of backs that included James White, Sony Michel and Brandon Bolden. 

They made it work, but they got a hand from a defense that looks like it's a threat to score any time it's on the field. Scary.

Best and worst from Patriots' win over the Giants>>>

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That 617 Life Podcast: Who made who? Bill Belichick or Tom Brady

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NBC Sports Boston Illustration

That 617 Life Podcast: Who made who? Bill Belichick or Tom Brady

The people's court is now in session. The topic of debate: Who made who, Bill Belichick or Tom Brady?

The two New England Patriots greats will always be inextricably linked for the success they've had in creating the Patriots dynasty. Together, the duo has won six Super Bowl titles and has overseen the most dominant two-decade stretch in NFL history.

Still, the question of who is chiefly responsible for the team's success has long been a debate among the New England faithful. And this week, Shanda, Cerrone, and Leroy take a deeper dive into the case for both sides on the latest episode of "That 617 Life Podcast".

Cerrone kicks off the "trial" by defending Brady, arguing that his on-field play and his arrival to the team snapped the Patriots out of the funk that they were in for most of the early part of their franchise's existence.

[The Patriots] were the team that nobody wanted to use in TecmoBowl. Now, for everybody in America, you're cheating if you use Tom Brady in Madden.

Furthermore, from Cerrone:

There's teams in the NFL over the past 20 years that still haven't defeated Tom Brady. Still, over 20 seasons. There are organizations and fan bases that still have not seen a victory in front of Tom Brady.

As for the case for Belichick, Leroy laid out a simple case for Belichick and called him "possibly the greatest coach in sports history."

Hear more of the trial and thoughts on the latest Boston sports stories on the latest episode of the "That 617 Life Podcast", which drops every Friday as part of the NBC Sports Boston podcast network.

CURRAN: Are we watching Brady's final day with the Patriots?>>>

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Report: Patriots expected to re-sign Nick Folk on Saturday

Report: Patriots expected to re-sign Nick Folk on Saturday

It's no longer a mystery who will kick for the New England Patriots vs. the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.

The Patriots are expected to officially re-sign Nick Folk on Saturday, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. Folk was released by the team and replaced with Kai Forbath prior to last week's game vs. the Houston Texans after undergoing an appendectomy.

In three games with the Patriots this season, Folk has made seven of nine field goals and all three extra-point attempts. 

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