With the specter of bad weather ready to invade the Meadowlands in three weeks yesterday’s games in Seattle and Foxborough gave a hint at which team may be best equipped to handle the elements. Rain and wind played a major role in the two Divisional round playoff games played. Both saw the home team come out on top.
In Seattle, the Saints were unable to reproduce the results of their first ever road playoff victory in Philadelphia last week. In sloppy rain soaked weather the Seahawks took advantage of a number of early Saints miscues, including a botched punt, two missed field goals and two failed attempts to convert on fourth down, to open a 16 – 0 lead. Each team was having a tough time moving the ball under the extremely difficult conditions. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson had his least productive day of the season passing for just 103 yards in the 23 - 15 victory.
On the east coast the New England Patriots showed an ability to adapt to the unfriendly conditions. Under heavy rain, they unleashed a potent rushing attack that amassed 234 yards and pushed the ball across the goal line six times. A new star was born as Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount grinded out 166 of those yards scoring a franchise record four touchdowns along the way. His last coming from 73 yards out. Quarterback Tom Brady was efficient; completing 13 of 25 passes as the Pats easily defeated the visiting Colts 43 – 22.
Yesterday, the Seahawks and Patriots moved themselves closer to the ultimate goal of reaching New York. Today two other teams will keep that quest alive for themselves. No one knows what the weather will be the rest of the way but one thing was shown to be true yesterday. The Patriots are well equipped to handle whatever Mother Nature is ready to provide…