The six time Super Bowl champion Patriots thundered onto the field, a new season upon them, football was back. Ironic that their opponent was the Pittsburgh Steelers, the only other team to win the big game 6 times (the only team to do so until the previous year) with their pride on the line, the Patriots were ready to show the world who was the true king of the gridiron. The Steelers differed the ball and kicked off, the game began.
Both team’s opening drives stalled and with 7:50 remaining in the 1st quarter, the Patriots knew it was imperative to score first. Quarterback Tom Brady tossed a horizontal pass to Receiver Julian Edelman (who played Quarterback in college), instead of running, Edelman fired a pass to Runningback James White, who took off downfield and made a 32 yard play thanks to excellent downfield blocking. Next play, Tom Brady hit Josh Gordon in stride for a Touchdown. The Patriots were up 7-0. After a 3 and out by Pittsburgh, the Patriots had very little time left in the 1st quarter, the final play was a strike to rookie Jakobi Meyers which got them over midfield. (7-0 New England)
The Patriots opened the 2nd Quarter with a bang! A play action fake baffled the Steelers defense and Tom Brady hit Josh Gordon for a 1st down. Two plays later, Kicker Stephen Gostkowski drilled a 25 yard field goal through the uprights, the Patriots extended their lead to 10-0. On the ensuing Steeler possession, they marched to the midfield stripe, until a clutch John Simon tackle forced a 4th and 7, as well as a Steeler punt. The Patriots started a quick drive down field, targeting Julian Edelman twice for 34 yards, ending in Tom Brady launching a 25 yard laser to Phillip Dorsett for a Patriots touchdown. The Patriots lead increased yet again, now 17-0. With just 3:37 left in the 2nd quarter, the Steelers, knew they had to put points on the board, with 2:09 left, they decided to take a chance and go for it on 4th down, leading to Donte Moncrief dropping a contested catch, a heartbreaking way to end a drive. With good field position, the Patriots were able to make a field goal to close out the 1st half, extending their already sizeable lead to 20. (20-0 New England)
Pittsburgh had the ball to kickoff the 3rd quarter, after a slow start, Steelers signal caller Ben Roethlisberger, launched a deep ball to Receiver James Washington, which placed Pittsburgh in the New England red zone. Unfortunately for Pittsburgh, the Patriots defense stood tall. On 1st down, they stuffed a run for no gain, on 2nd down, Deatrich Wise Jr. forced a fumble (while the Steelers recovered, they didn’t get the touchdown), on 3rd down, Jason McCourty broke up a pass intended for Donte Moncrief. The Steelers had to settle for a field goal, finally putting points up, but still trailing, making the score 20-3. The Patriots answered in 4 plays, first, a 17 yard dime to Julian Edelman, then 2 plays later, Tom Brady uncorked a beautiful pass to Phillip Dorsett for a 58 yard touchdown. One PAT later, the Patriots were sitting pretty with a 27-3 lead. The Steelers next drive faltered, the Patriots were able to score yet again with field goal, to end the 3rd quarter. (30-3 Patriots)
The Steelers opened with an 11 play drive, that ultimately ended with a punt. New England charged right down the field and while they didn’t score a touchdown, Stephon Gostkowski was able to drill a 39 yard field goal. Extending the lead by a gargantuan 30 points, 33-3. As the final quarter wound down, the Steelers became desperate for points, after Roethlisberger fired a deep spiral, that landed right in the hands of Patriots Safety Devin McCourty for an interception. The Patriots ran down the clock to clinch the home opener with a convincing win. (33-3 Patriots)