In homage to the game’s location, Gronkowski mimicked marching like a palace guard before his trademark spike. He scored again in the fourth quarter and now has seven TDs for the season.
Gronkowski credited his teammates for his being so open on many of his game-high eight catches.
“We were just doing a great job running the ball and that was a play-action pass,” he said of his second touchdown.
“When you’re running the ball well things happen, things open up. Just together as a whole, as an offense if everyone is playing well there is going to be areas that are open. That’s what’s great about working together as a team.”
The Rams had a chance to score before the half, on a long Greg Zuerlein field goal, but the snap to punter Johnny Hekker was bad, and Hekker could do nothing with the ball.
New England went into halftime with a 28-7 lead and got the ball to start the second half. It meant the fifth touchdown of the day, another end zone pass to Lloyd.
The defense did well to pester Bradford, and also kept the running back duo of Steven Jackson and Daryl Richardson in check. Jackson had just 23 yards on seven carries.
Givens, who briefly left the game with a foot injury, returned, but his final two catches went for a total of 13 yards.
The rookies on defense had standout plays, with Chandler Jones getting a third-down ankle sack of Bradford in the third quarter to force a punt, and both Alfonzo Dennard and Wilson pulling in fourth-quarter interceptions — Dennard on a pass that proved to be Bradford’s last snap of the game, and Wilson on backup Kellen Clemens on the Rams’ next possession.
New England was ahead by so much late in the game that backup quarterback Ryan Mallett got his first NFL snaps.
The Patriots had at least 350 yards of total offense (473) for the 17th straight regular-season game, breaking an NFL record set by the Rams in 1999-2000.
Brady, like other members of the Patriots, was relieved to win in big fashion.
“It feels good,” he said. “We’ve been close a few times but haven’t closed the deal. We were playing the team today that beat two of the teams we lost to. They got off to a good start [but] we countered and never looked back.”
Shalise Manza Young can be reached at email@example.com.