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New England at New York

Brady-to-Moss decimates Jets as Patriots roll in opener

CBSSports.com wire reports

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Randy Moss caught a long pass and stepped into the end zone, flashing the dominant playmaking ability that made him one of NFL's most feared wide receivers.

Looks like it's time for opposing defenses to get scared again.

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Moss caught nine passes from Tom Brady for 183 yards and a touchdown in his New England debut, leading the Patriots to a 38-14 victory over the New York Jets on Sunday. Ellis Hobbs also set an NFL record by taking the second-half kickoff 108 yards for a score.

"I was nervous before the game," Moss said. "I didn't know how much I was going to play or what might happen. I settled down after the first catch and the first hit. I don't think I ever was more anxious or more nervous. I didn't know how I would play."

Neither did anyone else, including the Patriots.

Moss, acquired from Oakland in a draft-day deal, missed most of training camp with a hamstring injury and it was unclear how much of an impact he would have with his new team, or if he'd even play against the Jets.

In the end, Moss made all the difference.

"I've been playing long enough so that I've pretty much got down catching balls and making plays after I get them," Moss said. "I've got that covered, but I've got to get my mind ready."

Moss was prepared after two miserable years with the Raiders. A perennial Pro Bowl receiver with Minnesota, he appeared rejuvenated Sunday, showing no ill effects from the missed time in camp.

"He was a great player before he got to the Patriots," Brady said. "Obviously, he's still a great player."

Brady, who faced little pressure from the Jets, was 22-of-28 for 297 yards and three touchdowns, including a 5-yarder to Benjamin Watson that was set up by catches of 22 and 33 yards by Moss. Brady continued his mastery of the Jets, improving to 7-0 against them at Giants Stadium, and 11-2 overall. Brady has thrown 17 touchdown passes and only five interceptions in his 14 appearances against the Jets.

With many fans still returning to their seats from the halftime break, Hobbs caught Mike Nugent's kickoff deep in the end zone and surprisingly ran it out.

"It was one of those deals that when he started to run, you yell: 'No! No! No! ... Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!'" Welker said.

Hobbs made a few cuts to the left sideline and took off untouched into the end zone to give New England a 21-7 lead 14 seconds into the third quarter.

"When you start going, you can feel it opening up more and more," Hobbs said. "You just want to head for that end zone. I always try to find that sixth or seventh gear, the gear they don't even make."

The previous record for longest kickoff return was 106 yards by three players, most recently by Roy Green of the St. Louis Cardinals in 1979.

The play also tied the record for longest in NFL history, matching the 108-yard missed field goal returns by Chicago's Devin Hester last season against the Giants, and the Bears' Nathan Vasher the previous season against San Francisco.

"That was tough to swallow," Jets linebacker Jonathan Vilma said. "It was tough for us to give up that."

Laveranues Coles had two touchdown catches for the Jets, who had a scare in the third quarter when quarterback Chad Pennington hobbled to the sideline with a lower right leg injury.

On second-and-12 from the Patriots 49, Pennington went back to throw and was hit hard by Jarvis Green. Pennington was slow to get up and was in obvious pain before standing up, then collapsing to the turf after taking a few steps. Pennington eventually hopped on his left leg to the sideline.

"I've never had a lower leg injury before," Pennington said. "I'm not going to lay there, I'll tell you that."

Pennington flung his helmet to the ground as he hopped over to the bench, where he was surrounded by team trainers. Kellen Clemens replaced him, but Pennington came back to start the Jets' next series with his right ankle heavily wrapped. He led the team on a scoring drive capped by Coles' 1-yard touchdown catch.

In the fourth quarter, Clemens again replaced Pennington, who decided it wasn't worth it to risk further injury. Pennington, 16-of-21 for 167 yards and the two touchdown passes to Coles, was uncertain how serious the injury is.

"The doctors are taking a look at it, and I'm sure I'll see them frequently this week and we'll go from there," he said before limping from the podium.


  • The 183 yards receiving were the third-most in Moss' career. His career high is 204 at Chicago in 1999, and he had 190 yards receiving at Green Bay in 1998.
  • Thomas Jones made his Jets debut and gained 42 yards on 14 carries.
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Randy Moss finds his old form, catching nine passes for 183 yards, including a 51-yard touchdown.
Randy Moss finds his old form, catching nine passes for 183 yards, including a 51-yard touchdown. (AP)


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Sun. Sept. 9Final
NY Jets
Scoring Summary
TDWes Welker, 11 Yd pass from Tom Brady (Stephen Gostkowski kick is good), 5:12. Drive: 12 plays, 91 yards in 5:39.
TDLaveranues Coles, 7 Yd pass from Chad Pennington (Mike Nugent kick is good), 4:15. Drive: 10 plays, 66 yards in 6:22.
TDBenjamin Watson, 5 Yd pass from Tom Brady (Stephen Gostkowski kick is good), 1:07. Drive: 9 plays, 73 yards in 3:08.
TDEllis Hobbs, 108 Yd kick return (Stephen Gostkowski kick is good), 14:46.
TDRandy Moss, 51 Yd pass from Tom Brady (Stephen Gostkowski kick is good), 7:01. Drive: 5 plays, 85 yards in 2:48.
TDLaveranues Coles, 1 Yd pass from Chad Pennington (Mike Nugent kick is good), 2:19. Drive: 9 plays, 70 yards in 4:42.
FGStephen Gostkowski 22 Yd, 6:51. Drive: 17 plays, 75 yards in 10:28.
TDHeath Evans, 1 Yd run (Stephen Gostkowski kick is good), 1:58. Drive: 8 plays, 53 yards in 4:04.
Players of the Game

L. Coles
Rec 7
Yds 59
Avg 8.4
TD 2
New England

T. Brady
Att 28
Comp 22
Yds 297
TD 3
New England
T. Brady22/2829730
L. Maroney2072011
S. Morris1154013
T. Brady1404
K. Faulk1404
H. Evans2111
M. Cassel1000
M. Gutierrez1-10-1
R. Moss9183151
W. Welker661113
D. Stallworth119019
S. Morris21106
K. Faulk1909
B. Watson2915
J. Gaffney1505
New York
C. Pennington16/2116720
K. Clemens5/103500
T. Jones1442012
L. Washington41505
C. Pennington1303
L. Coles759217
J. Cotchery657011
L. Washington330016
C. Baker229016
W. Wright111011
J. McCareins110010
T. Jones1606
Complete Player Stats
Other Games
ARI 17 Final
SF 20
BAL 20 Final
CIN 27
NYG 35 Final
DAL 45
TB 6 Final
SEA 20
CHI 3 Final
SD 14
DET 36 Final
OAK 21
MIA 13 Final
WAS 16
CAR 27 Final
STL 13
ATL 3 Final
MIN 24
TEN 13 Final
JAC 10
KC 3 Final
HOU 20
PHI 13 Final
GB 16
PIT 34 Final
DEN 15 Final
BUF 14
NO 10 Final
IND 41