The Patriots ran the Dolphins out of their own stadium on Sunday, building a 42-7 halftime lead behind five touchdown passes from Tom Brady, including two circus catches from Randy Moss.
Moss made two spectacular touchdown receptions, despite being double covered by Dolphins defensive backs on both plays.
On the first touchdown, Moss went up and outfought Dolphins safety Cameron Worrell for the ball.
Worrell was beaten again, along with cornerback Renaldo Hill, on the Patriots' next possession for a 50-yard score when Moss secured the ball with one arm before bringing into his body. Two acrobatic receptions by the most feared receiver in the NFL this season, although the Dolphins knew what to expect coming in.
"Hey, he's Randy Moss. It's not like this is the first time he's had a game like this, and it won't be the last," Worrell said. "He's a great player, and he's really playing well there. He adds a lot to that offense, and you saw the results on the field today."
Moss has always been known for being a dangerous deep threat, but one of the more underrated aspects of his game is Moss' route-running. A lot of guys have great speed and can run go patterns, but Moss has a full repertoire of moves, making him almost impossible to defend at times.
"He does whatever he wants to do," Miami cornerback Will Allen said. "He's not going to just run one route. The stuff they run is option stuff off of what Moss does. If you're inside, he's going outside. If you're outside, he's going to keep running across. They're just really hard to stop. Right now, they're a well-oiled machine."
New England has struggled in Miami in recent years, but Moss and the Patriots offense put this game away early. New England racked up 336 yards in the first half and went into the intermission with a commanding 42-7 lead. Many of the Dolphins defense players had nothing but praise for the Patriots offensive juggernaut in the locker room after the game.
"He's one of the most unstoppable guys you'll ever find," cornerback Andre Goodman said about Moss. "At the end of the day, they have an offensive machine, and when they're on, they're on. You know Randy Moss. You've seen him make those plays time and time again. When you have two guys back there, you like to think the odds are on your side, but he negates those odds. It's a pretty helpless feeling."
Moss wasn't alone in ripping apart the Miami secondary. Former Dolphin Wes Welker had a happy homecoming by catching nine passes for 138 yards and two touchdowns. It's Welker's second 100-yard game in as many weeks, but his old teammates aren't surprised he's having so much success in New England.
"Wes is a perfect weapon for any team in the slot, but when you put Donte' (Stallworth) on the outside with Randy Moss, that makes him extra special," Goodman said. "He showed that today. He's a favorite target of Tom Brady, and rightfully so. We all know how good of a player Wes is, and in this offense he's able to put his talents on display and people are taking notice."
And people are starting to take notice of the Patriots' quest to go undefeated, which doesn't seem like an unreachable goal anymore.
--With Sunday's victory, the Patriots are 7-0 for the first time in team history. The previous team record for consecutive victories to start a season was six, achieved in 2004.
--The Patriots won Sunday's game by 21 points and have become the first team in NFL history to win each of its first seven games by 17 points or more. The previous record-holder was the 1999 St. Louis Rams, who won their first six games by 17 points or more and lost in their seventh game. New England has won by 24, 24, 31, 21, 17, 21 and 21 points this season.
--The Patriots scored 42 points in the first half, marking the highest point output in any half in franchise history. The previous single-half record was 41 points, achieved on Oct. 29, 1978, in the first half of the Patriots' 55-21 victory over the New York Jets at Schaefer Stadium. New England led that game 41-7 at halftime, and it led Sunday's game against the Dolphins 42-7 at the half.
--QB Tom Brady achieved a perfect passer rating of 158.3, completing 21 of 25 passes for 354 yards and six touchdowns with no interceptions. The perfect passer rating was the first of Brady's career, topping his previous career-high rating of 150.9, achieved on Sept. 23, 2007, against Buffalo. Brady's perfect passer rating is the first by a member of the Patriots since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger.
--Brady threw six touchdown passes, setting a single-game franchise record and becoming the first NFL player to throw for six touchdowns in a game since Peyton Manning did it on Nov. 25, 2004. The NFL record for most touchdown passes in a game is seven, achieved five times, most recently by Joe Kapp of the Minnesota Vikings on Sept. 28, 1969.
--"So far today we saw 23 teams play football and the Patriots play something else." -- NBC's Chris Collinsworth on the Patriots, following their win over the Dolphins.
--"One more turnover and it's a 14-point game in the middle of the fourth quarter. I was at the game." -- Coach Bill Belichick when told the score was 42-21 when he reinserted Tom Brady into the game.
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