With a nod to Patfanken's "Idle Thoughts" thread, some observations coming off of the big win against Jacksonville. 1. I thought this was by far the most balanced offensive attack we have had all year. 197 yards rushing with Brady 23/26 for 267 yards (and 4 TDs/0 INTs) is just about as perfect as you can get. I'd much rather have that kind of balance than a 400 yard passing performance from Brady. 2. I thought it was Brady's best ball distribution since the Indy game. He's much more effective when he spreads the ball around. 3. I thought Maroney was clearly in the end zone when he fumbled, and it should have been a TD. But I'm glad BB benched him - it sends a clear message to the team about not tolerating screw ups in the red zone, and the team responded. 4. I thought the catch of the day was Chris Baker's TD reception. Baker was deadly in the red zone for us in preseason, and we haven't take advantage of that all year. 5. Light-Mankins-Koppen-Neal-Vollmer is one heck of an OL. 0 sacks and 197 yards rushing. Brady had lots of time to find the open receiver. The Pats are a legitimate SB contender with that kind of offensive line performance. 6. Best performance of the year from Jerod Mayo. He's finally looking back to form. 7. In the 10 years under BB, the Pats have only once had a pass rusher with more than 10 sacks in a season - 12.5 by Mike Vrabel in 2007, when the Pats were often up big and could let loose the pass rush. Tully Banta-Cain has 9.5 sacks with a game to go. Who would ever have believed it when we picked up Banta-Cain in free agency last year? 8. The secondary seems to have finally recovered from it's post-Indy funk. The addition of James Sanders has been huge. I can't figure out what happened to McGowan, who was arguably out best defender through 10 games, but Sanders and Springs have done a lot to stabilize the secondary. Meriweather looks like he is back on his early season form, after going through a bad stretch for several games. 9. Best drive of the game resulted in 0 points - the 12:12 74 yard drive in the 4th quarter. 20 plays (almost 1/3 of the 62 plays on offense for the Pats), 17 of them runs. Only 1 play went for more than 10 yards. 2 successful 4th down conversions. The Pats run 13 consecutive running plays. We haven't had a drive like that all season. At that point in the game, points were meaningless. But to be able to sustain that kind of drive will be huge for the Pats in the playoffs. It reminded me of the good old days with Corey Dillon in 2004. It took 15 games to finally see a Pats team play for a full 60 minutes, and what a difference it made. Can we sustain it, against better teams? That's the big question right now.