New England Patriots Score 108 Points In 103 Hours; Could Reach 600

Cold, Hard Football Facts for Nov 23, 2012



The New England Patriots beat the stuffing out of the N.Y. Jets 49-19 in the primetime Thanksgiving AFC East scoring feast at MetLife Stadium.

The victory caps a holiday feeding frenzy for the Patriots: they've now scored 108 points in 103 hours, after beating the Colts 59-24 on Sunday.

That's a lot of f*ckin' points, for those of you keeping score at home.

For a little perspective, the Kansas City Chiefs have scored 152 points since the season kicked off on September 9. The Patriots have scored 108 since Sunday.

The overflowing plate of points in New Jersey would have made even portly governor Chris Christie blush at the gluttony.

And the most recent effort came after days of despair from fans in New England over the fate of the team in the wake of the injury to super-stud tight end Rob Gronksomething or other.

You figure folks would know by now that there is only one indispensible ingredient on the menu of New England victories.

That savory sizzle comes from Tom Brady, who passed for 3 TD with 0 INT for the second week in a row, while running in for a 1-yard score. The Patriots also scored on defense (Steve Gregory fumble return) and on special teams (Julian Edelman return of fumbled kick return) for the second week in a row.

The flurry of non-offensive scores followed an 83-yard Brady-to-Shane Vereen touchdown connection. They highlighted a run of 21 points in less than one minute midway through the second quarter that blew open a 28-0 lead for New England against the sloppy, overmatched Jets.

Brady connected with Edelman for a 56-yard touchdown before the half to give New England a 35-0 lead while tying a team record for points in a quarter (35).

The Patriots are scoring at a ridiculous rate (190 in their last four games) and could, if a few things go right, become the first 600-point team in NFL history.

The 2012 Patriots average 37.0 PPG, a shade ahead of the rate of the 2007 Patriots (36.8 PPPG), who hold the current NFL record for most points in a season (589). Here’s the all-time NFL scoring leaderboard:

1. 2012 Patriots – 592*
2. 2007 Patriots – 589
3. 2011 Packers – 560
4. 1998 Vikings – 556
5. 2011 Saints – 547
6. 1983 Redskins – 541
7. 2000 Rams – 540
8. 1999 Rams – 526
9. 2004 Colts – 522
10. 2010 Patriots – 518
11t. 2011 Patriots – 513
11t. 1984 Dolphins – 513
13. 2009 Saints – 510
14. 1994 49ers – 505
15. 2001 Rams – 503
16. 1998 Broncos – 501
* projected; note: the AFL's Oilers scored 513 points in the 14-game season of 1961

The Patriots have been so prolific that, as we noted this week in our Bet on It segment of CHFF TV, they’ve now single-handedly covered the game over-under line in three different contests this year:

Week

Opponent

O/U

Patriots score

12

at Jets

48.5

49

11

vs. Colts

54

59

4

at Bills

48

52

The Patriots nearly topped the game over-under one other time, scoring 45 points against the Rams in London. The over-under was 46. (Cap tip to the incredible Spreadapedia at CHFF Insider for the O/U info.)

The public still hasn’t caught up with New England’s ridiculous scoring pace: their games have hit the over in nine straight.

The 2012 Patriots vs. 2007 Patriots

The obvious comparison now for these Patriots is the record-setting Patriots of 2007. That team went 16-0, owns the current NFL record for points scored (589) and included a record 50 TD passes from Brady.

The brilliant quarterback, of course, has led the scoring charge for the Patriots. He’s now thrown 24 TDs against just 3 INT – a ridiculous 8:1 TD-INT ratio that’s even better than the 6.25:1 he put up in the epic 2007 season (50-8).

Here's a look at his 2007 and 2012 seasons side by side:

  • 2007 – 398 of 578, 68.9%, 4,896 yards, 8.3 YPA, 50 TD, 8 INT, 117.2 rating, 21 sacks, 2 rush TD
  • 2012 – 274 of 421, 65.1%, 3,299 yards, 7.8 YPA 24 TD, 3 INT, 105.0 rating, 15 sacks, 3 rush TD

Brady was more accurate and got the ball down field better in 2007, thanks largely to the impact of wide receiver Randy Moss. He connected on 15 passes for 40 yards or more in 2007, compared with just 5 so far this year, and averaged a full half-yard per attempt better in 2007 than he does in 2012.

But other than that, the 2012 team is largely more balanced than that record-setting team of 2007. And that may prove beneficial in a sport in which balance in many areas is usually more important than greatness in any one area. Here’s how the two teams scored:

  • 2007 – 17 rush TD, 50 pass TD, 2 return TD, 6 defensive TD, 21 of 24 field goals, +16 turnovers
  • 2012 – 18 rush TD, 24 pass TD, 2 return TD, 5 defensive TD, 21 of 26 field goals, +24 turnovers

Now let’s look at the numbers side by side, protected over the rest of the 2012 season:

  • 2007 – 17 rush TD, 50 pass TD, 2 return TD, 6 defensive TD, 21 of 24 field goals, +16 turnovers
  • 2012 – 26 rush TD, 35 pass TD, 3 return TD, 7 defensive TD, 31 of 38 field goals, +35 turnovers

So the 2012 Patriots are not quite as prolific on offense as the 2007 team, which scored 67 offensive touchdowns. The 2012 Patriots are on pace to produce six fewer touchdowns, 10 more field goals and two more non-offensive scores than the 2007 team.

Perhaps most notably, though, the 2012 Patriots are the more balanced team. They led the NFL with 16 rushing TD entering Week 12 and added two more on Thanksgiving. They’re also among the league leaders in rushing attempts and rushing yards. And the current +24 turnover differential is stunning.

If the Patriots can maintain that deadly two-pronged offensive attack over the final five games, continue to dominate the turnover battle and produce a couple more non-offensive scores, as they did against the Jets, we may be talking about the first 600-point team in NFL history at the end of the December.


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