Movin' on up, on the East side...
(Photo from Boston.com)
And just like that, they're tied for first.
Maybe it's been the seeming up and down nature of the season. Maybe it's been the fact that Cassel's performance, despite the two INTs, qualifies as "good." Maybe it's that one week Randy Moss catches all the passes and the next week, he either drops them or disappears entirely. Maybe I'm making all of that up. But even with the AFC East as wide open as it is this season, I still, somehow don't think I expected to see the Patriots tied for first with Buffalo halfway through.
Because: Tom Brady.
Tom Brady's knee and the inner workings thereof have become possibly the biggest elephant in the room in New England and I still can't really talk about it without curling into the fetal position and being spoonfed applesauce. I miss him like nobody's business and want him back yesterday and might've already started researching ways to attach a robot leg from the Iron Giant to our QB, but failing that, I'm still trying my hardest to throw all my support behind Cassel. After all, it takes a village to raise a quarterback. And a good, ole' inferiority complex never hurt anyone. The Matt Cassel Confidence Camp Express continues.
That said, perhaps more than half the credit for yesterday's victory goes to Kevin Faulk. No spring chicken, surely, Faulk, the Pats' normal third down back, has been forced (or, I'm sure, asked nicely), to serve as the running back on all downs. Because, you know, you might've heard but the Pats players are dropping like flies.
Which is why I'd humbly request that they all be packed in bubble wrap and put away after use, please.
I really am being quite Zen about this season, though. Well, Zen for me. I haven't thrown anything yet and I haven't been asked to leave any local drinking establishments for arguing with anyone about Ben Roethlisberger vs. Tom Brady. (There have been a few close calls though, I'm not gonna lie). But the way I figure it, the worst has already happened. Might as well just watch some football.
The Patriots, it seems, are operating under a similar mindset as the announcers over the course of the past two weeks have been talking about how they're the "fun" team now. Frankly, I'm not sure Belichick can crack a smile without a pulley system but if the team's having fun, I'm all for it. Also: winning. Winning = fun.
Here's hoping my Zen attitude carries over through next Sunday night when the Pats take on the Colts which they are doing two days before my birthday because the Pats have to play the Colts on my birthday weekend for the billionth year in a row because the NFL hates me or something. I am calm. I am collected. I am rational.
We'll see how long that lasts.