Tag: Denver Broncos

Revisiting Tom Brady’s Conference Championships

Tom Brady will make his NFC Championship debut this weekend with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. (PHOTO COURTESY: Charles Krupa / Associated Press/LA Times)

By Matt Noonan

By now you probably have heard that Tom Brady – yes, the former New England Patriots quarterback – is headed back to the conference championship for the ninth time in the last ten seasons. Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rallied to beat the New Orleans Saints, 30-20, last night in the NFC Divisional Round to secure a date next Sunday with Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers.

For the most part, Brady’s trips to the conference championship have resulted in trips to the “big game” – that would be the Super Bowl, to be exact – while some have ended in disappointment. But Sunday will mark the veteran signal-caller’s first appearance in the NFC Championship after appearing in 13 AFC title games.

Being a history nerd, as well as a lifelong football fan, I thought we could get ready for this weekend’s big game by revisiting all of Tom Brady’s past appearances in the conference championship round, beginning with his initial appearance against the Pittsburgh Steelers in January 2002.


January 27, 2002: Eight days after leading the Patriots past the Oakland Raiders in what has been dubbed the “snow bowl,” Brady received some help from Drew Bledsoe, who replaced the young quarterback who sustained a sprained ankle late in the second quarter. Bledsoe completed 10 of 21 passes for 102 yards and one touchdown while the defense limited Pittsburgh to just two touchdowns during the final two sessions.

New England would advance to its first Super Bowl since the 1996 season and beat the St. Louis Rams, thanks to a game-winning field goal by Adam Vinatieri.

January 18, 2004: Eight days after a dramatic win over the Tennessee Titans, Tom Brady and the Patriots outlasted Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts, 24-14.

While Brady tossed one touchdown in the win, it was the New England defense, specifically Ty Law, who highlighted the victory – the unit intercepted Manning four times while recording four sacks.

New England would advance to the Super Bowl and beat the Carolina Panthers.

January 23, 2005: Supposedly, Tom Brady was sick prior to his team’s championship meeting with the Pittsburgh Steelers, but he looked pretty good once the game commenced. Brady completed 14 of 21 passes for 207 yards while Corey Dillon led all rushers with 73 yards on 24 carries.

New England would represent the AFC in the Super Bowl two weeks later where they would beat the Philadelphia Eagles by a score of 24-21.

January 21, 2007: After scoring back-to-back wins over the New York Jets and San Diego Chargers, the New England Patriots entered the 2006 AFC Championship game with a lot of momentum. However, it slowly disappeared early in the third quarter as Indianapolis erased a 21-6 deficit to beat the Patriots, 38-34.

The Colts limited Tom Brady and the Patriots offense to just 13 points in the second half while Peyton Manning finished the game with 349 passing yards and two touchdowns (one passing and one rushing).

January 20, 2008: Tom Brady played the role of gunslinger in this particular match-up with the San Diego Chargers by completing 22 of 33 passes for 209 yards, two touchdowns, and three interceptions as the Patriots won their 18th straight contest before falling to the New York Giants two weeks later in the Super Bowl.

January 22, 2012: This was perhaps the most dramatic AFC Championship game for Tom Brady and the Patriots as they somehow edged the Baltimore Ravens, 23-20, thanks to a missed field goal by Billy Cundiff.

Tom Brady rushed for one score in the win, while BenJarvus Green-Ellis rushed for a game-high 68 yards on 15 carries.

Sadly, the dramatic win was quickly forgotten two weels later when New England lost to the New York Giants in the Super Bowl for the second time in four seasons.

January 20, 2013: Tom Brady completed 29 of 54 passes for 320 yards and one touchdown – he also threw two interceptions – but it wasn’t enough to send the Patriots past the Ravens at Gillette Stadium. Baltimore erased memories of the 2011 championship meeting with an impressive 28-13 victory, thanks to three touchdown passes from Joe Flacco.

January 19, 2014: For the second-straight season, the Patriots won 13 of 18 contests, but their final outing with the Denver Broncos concluded with a 26-16 setback. Peyton Manning completed 32 of 43 passes for 400 yards and two touchdowns while the Broncos defense limited Tom Brady to just two touchdowns – one through the air, one on the ground.

January 18, 2015: After a dramatic and exciting win over the Baltimore Ravens in the AFC Divisional Round, the Patriots scored a huge win over the Indianapolis Colts at Gillette Stadium. Tom Brady tossed three touchdowns in the win while LeGarrette Blount rushed for a game-high 148 yards on 30 carries and three scores.

New England’s defense intercepted Andrew Luck twice – they also limited Dan Herron to 51 rushing yards on 10 carries.

The Patriots returned to the Super Bowl for the first time since the 2011 season to beat the Seattle Seahawks, thanks to a late-game interception by Malcolm Butler.

January 24, 2016: Weeks after losing to the Denver Broncos in the regular season, the Orange and Blue scored their second victory of the 2015 season against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. Brady was sacked four times and picked-off twice, but he did toss one touchdown against a talented Broncos defense.

Peyton Manning concluded the game 17 of 32 for 176 yards and two touchdowns. He was also sacked three times.

January 22, 2017: Tom Brady and the New England Patriots were the better team in this meeting with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Brady tossed three touchdowns, including two to Chris Hogan, who concluded the contest with nine grabs on 12 targets for 180 yards.

Two weeks after an impressive win against the Steelers, the Patriots would complete an improbable comeback against the Atlanta Falcons to secure the franchise’s fifth Super Bowl championship.

January 21, 2018: After knocking off the Tennessee Titans eight days earlier, the Patriots scored their second-straight postseason win against a member of the AFC South. New England rallied to beat the Jacksonville Jaguars, 24-20, thanks to two touchdown passes from Tom Brady to Danny Amendola.

Sadly, the exciting win against the Jaguars would follow with a disappointing setback to the Philadelphia Eagles.

January 20, 2019: Sony Michel and Rex Burkhead highlighted an overtime win against the Kansas City Chiefs by combining for 154 rushing yards and four touchdowns. Burkhead clinched the victory in overtime while Tom Brady concluded the contest with 348 passing yards and one touchdowns.

Kansas City did intercept Brady twice while Patrick Mahomes completed 16 of 31 passes for 295 yards and three touchdowns. New England would go onto capture their sixth Super Bowl with a 13-3 victory over the Los Angeles Rams.

Daily Noontime (Monday, Oct. 19, 2020)

By NoontimeSports.com

Happy Monday, everyone!

We hope everyone had a wonderful weekend and ready for a great week. And by way, it is quite chilly outside – have you stepped out the door this morning?

Enough about the chilly temps – luckily, we live in New England so we should know that it will be a bit warmer later today – so let’s instead switch the subject from weather to sports and kick off the week with a brand new ‘Daily Noontime.’

Listen to today’s Noontime Sports Podcast featuring Ryan Irwin and Patrick Maddigan from Team IMPACT on Apple Podcast and Spotify!

And let’s begin today’s ‘Daily Noontime’ with … Tom Brady looking like Tom Brady yesterday – well, maybe not the old Tom Brady from 2002-2007? – as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rolled past the Green Bay Packers by a score of 38-10.

With the win, the Buccaneers improve to 4-2 while the Packers saw their four-game winning streak snapped – ouch!

The Buccaneers did not record a single penalty during yesterday’s matchup – seriously, no flags were throw against Bruce Arians‘ team! – while Ronald Jones rushed for 100 yards (again!).

Next week, the Buccaneers will visit the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday Night Football – that should be a good game, right? – while the Packers will host the Houston Texans.

In addition to the Buccaneers winning on Sunday, the Tennessee Titans looked great against the Houston Texans, Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons snapped a five-game losing streak, and Philip Rivers and the Indianapolis Colts rallied to beat the Cincinnati Bengals.

Also, we saw a really good-looking Pittsburgh Steelers team trounce the Cleveland Browns while our hometown New England Patriots looked awful against the Denver Broncos.

Tonight – well, later today and yes, this evening – we’ll have some more football to watch with the Kansas City Chiefs visiting the Buffalo Bills while the Dallas Cowboys will entertain the Arizona Cardinals.

Let’s switch to baseball where the 2020 World Series is set to begin tomorrow evening between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Tampa Bay Rays.

Both the Dodgers and Rays needed seven games to clinch the pennant. And this is a series we – yes, we! – are interested in watching and following.

Here are some things you need to know about this particular series, courtesy of ESPN.com.

Alright, here are some more links and news from the world wide web:

Daily Noontime (Friday, October 16, 2020)

By NoontimeSports.com

Happy Friday, everyone!

We hope everyone is doing well and having a great ending to the work week.

Any fun plans for the weekend?

We know two local athletes have plans for this weekend – that would Cam Newton and Stephon Gilmore, who will be on the field Sunday when the New England Patriots host the Denver Broncos.

According to the Boston Globe yesterday, Newton’s presence on the practice field seemed to excite his teammates, including Gunner Olszewski, who told Jim McBride that he’s “fun to play with.”

With Newton on the sidelines earlier this month due to testing positive for the coronavirus, the Patriots suffered their second setback of the season to the Kansas City Chiefs, who recently signed Le’Veon Bell, per multiple reports. Yet, with why exactly did the Chiefs sign a player at a position that seems to be “replaceable” this year?

Let’s switch gears to sports betting where Turner Sports has signed some deals with both DraftKings and Fanduel. However, it does seem like DraftKings was the real winner in this big announcement.

Did you watch the end of last night’s American League Championship Series (ALCS) between the Houston Astros and Tampa Bay Rays? Well, in case you did not, the Astros won and might be poised to win the next two games after falling behind, 3-0.

Let’s go back to football for our final story and headline of the day – do you know who Arch Manning is? If not, he’s the nephew of Peyton Manning and is a pretty good high school quarterback!

That’s it for now, but you know we’ll be back for another blog post (or two) later today, so stay tuned!

Daily Noontime (Tuesday, October 13, 2020)

By NoontimeSports.com

Welcome to a very rainy Tuesday, everyone! 

It’s going to be a VERY rainy day here in Massachusetts so it is probably best for everyone to stay inside and watch Netflix, right? 

Let’s kick-start your day with a brand new ‘Daily Noontime,’ beginning with some news about Cam Newton and our hometown New England Patriots

As of now, it seems possible that Patriots fans could see Cam Newton on the field next Sunday when the Patriots host the Denver Broncos, but as the team’s head coach Bill Belichick noted during his weekly radio appearance with WEEI‘s “Ordway, Merloni & Fauria, the veteran signal-caller “would have to go through medical clearance” before being allowed to rejoin his teammates on the practice field.   

Newton is one of four Patriots to have tested positive for the coronavirus, but according to a few reports this morning, including PatriotsWire, it seems likely that the 2015 National Football League (NFL) quarterback will be back in the huddle at some point this week, which should be considered good news for the Patriots. Additionally, fans should expect Stephon Gilmore back on the field, too – we certainly need his help on defense! 

Sticking with the football theme, the NFL will be testing players and coaches on game days, along with “some other employees of each team,” as noted in Kevin Seifert‘s piece on ESPN.com, which was posted late last night. Seifert also noted a few more tweaks to the league’s update Covid-19 protocols, which include everyone wearing masks during walk-through practices to coaches having to wear either masks or double-layered gaiters during games. 

Let’s switch gears to the Boston Red Sox, who will have the fourth pick in the 2021 Major League Baseball (MLB) Draft. The last time the Red Sox picked fourth in a draft was in 1967. 

Boston concluded its 60-game season with a 24-36 mark, which was good for a fifth-place finish in the American League East. The Baltimore Orioles, who have previously occupied the last spot in the division in previous seasons, finished fourth this year with an overall record of 25-35. 

Did you know that two of six teams in the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) were independently owned? And did you know one of those two independently owned teams happens to play in hour home state? 

Yep, the Boston Pride, which recorded the best record last year and also secured a spot in the Isobel Cup, is one of the two teams that independently owned – it appears their setup will be the model for the league’s six teams going forward, according to a recent report (and yes, story, too!) from the New York Times

And finally, make sure to read the latest Boston Cannons legend spotlight on Sean Morris, who played locally at the University of Massachusetts (Amherst) before becoming a star of the local Major League Lacrosse (MLL) franchise. It’s a great read! 

Daily Noontime (Monday, Oct. 12, 2020)

By Matt Noonan

Happy Monday, everyone! 

We hope EVERYONE is doing well while having a nice ending to a LONG weekend – crazy to think it is the 12 of October, but I guess we can say we’re now another day closer to the end of 2020. 

Let’s get after it and set the tone for the week with a brand new ‘Daily Noontime’ beginning with LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers topping the Miami Heat, 106-93, to clinch the 2020 National Basketball Association (NBA) Finals last night. 

Highlights from last night’s game are below, courtesy of the NBA YouTube channel! 

With the win, the Lakers have now captured 17 NBA Championships – our hometown Boston Celtics have also won 17 titles, too. LeBron James, who finished with a game-high 28 points, was named the Finals MVP. 

The Lakers were pegged the “way too early” favorite for the upcoming 2020-21 season, according to ESPN.com – not sure when that season will officially tip-off – while the Celtics were picked seventh on the list while the Los Angeles Clippers checked in second and the Milwaukee Bucks secured the third spot.

As you probably know by now, today’s game between the New England Patriots and Denver Broncos has been moved to next Sunday, October 18. Yesterday – Sunday, October 11, to be exact – was the Patriots bye week, as well as the Broncos. 

Monday’s game between the Patriots and Broncos was canceled yesterday due to the Patriots having a fourth member of the team (or organization?) test positive. 

As of this morning, none of the Patriots coronavirus tests came back positive, which is good news. Yet, what does that mean for Cam Newton and Stephon Gilmore remains an unknown? It is likely the duo that supposedly dined out in Boston earlier this month would be able to play next weekend against Denver, but we’ll just have to wait and see. 

Sticking with football, my other favorite team – that would be the Dallas Cowboys scored a much-needed win yesterday over the New York Giants, but suffered a major setback in the third quarter as Dak Prescott suffered a serious ankle injury that will keep him sidelined until next season. 

Andy Dalton will lead the Cowboys for the remainder of the season – let’s keep our fingers crossed for him, while wishing Dak a smooth and healthy recovery! 

Other news and links from the world wide web: 

  • The National Football League (NFL) maybe forced to add an additional week – “Week 18” – to its schedule due to the potential of more games being canceled or postponed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. 
  • The Tampa Bay Rays won the first game of the 2020 American League Championship Series (ALCS) against the Houston Astros last night. Are the Rays the new Major League Baseball (MLB) Playoff Villian Slayer?” 
  • Derek Carr and the Las Vegas Raiders handed the Kansas City Chiefs their first loss since last November yesterday
  • Things are not going well for Jimmy Garoppolo or Kyle Shanahan these days. 

We’ll be back for more later, but in the meantime make sure to stay connected with Noontime Sports on FacebookInstagramTwitter, and YouTube – have a great day, everyone!