Landover, Md. – In a wild one in Washington today, the Patriots outlasted the surprising Redskins and came away with a 34-27 win at FedEx Field.
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had another outstanding game, finishing 22 for 37 for 357 yards with three touchdown passes and one interception.
The receiving star for New England was once again Rob Gronkowski, who set an NFL season record for TD catches by a tight end with No. 14 in the first quarter, and added to his record by catching No. 15 in the third. Gronkowski finished with 160 yards receiving, running over Redskins defenders almost at will.
Wes Welker had the other touchdown catch for the Patriots, who improved to 10-3 with the win and are now tied with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Houston Texans for the best record in the AFC.
The live blog game summary follows:
0:22 4th quarter: Game over. Interception by Jerod Mayo at the 7-yard line seals the deal. Mayo appeared to get some help from the ground on the interception but after review, the play stands and the Patriots win. Prior to the pick, the ball went back to the NE 15-yard line after Santana Moss caught a pass in the end zone, but was called for pushing off Julian Edelman. Earlier in the final drive by Washington, Rob Ninkovich and Brandon Deaderick teamed up to make a big stop after a 4-yard gain by Helu.
2:00 4th quarter: It’s a first and goal from the NE 9-yard line after Redskins RB Roy Helu pounds the ball on two consecutive runs. We’ll see if Washington has what it takes to get the ball into the end zone to tie it up again after the two-minute warning.
3:09 4th quarter: Just when you think Rex Grossman is done for the day, he comes up with a big play to keep the drive alive. Grossman hit a wide-open Jabar Gaffney for 23 yards to the NE 21. First down.
3:29 4th quarter: We’re set up for a huge third-and-2 play for the Redskins from the Patriots 44-yard line.
6:30 4th quarter: With a chance to put the game away on third and goal, Tom Brady threw his first interception in 202 attempts when Josh Wilson ripped the ball away from WR Tiquan Underwood in the end zone. Brady had a sure TD on the previous play, but he threw a bit behind an open Wes Welker. Redskins still very much in this game. Offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien got into a shouting match with Tom Brady on the sidelines after the interception. Bill Belichick was seen telling O’Brien to back off.
6:58 4th quarter: After a completion to the other tight end, a.k.a. Aaron Hernandez, gets the Patriots to the Redskins 18-yard line, the FedEx Faithful began to trickle to the gates to beat the traffic.
10:34 4th quarter: Another big hit by Devin McCourty, coupled with a killer holding penalty on a long Redskins pass play, stalls the Washington drive at their 20 and the Patriots get the ball back with a chance to extend the lead, starting at their 49-yard line. Redskins staffers are on the sidelines with cheesy signs that say “12th man” and “Louder” in an effort to get the 77,000 plus fans into the game for the home team.
12:43 4th quarter: BenJarvus Green-Ellis came up short on a third-and-1 for no gain at the NE 39-yard line and the Patriots have to kick it away. The scoring pace has finally slowed down for both teams as we enter the final quarter.
0:28 3d quarter: A big tip away by Devin McCourty and an incomplete third-down pass by Grossman results in the Redskins finally punting the ball away. New England takes over at their 18.
2:22 3d quarter: A new offensive weapon for Washington. Rookie running back Evan Royster is gaining some yards on the ground as it’s the Redskins’ turn to move the ball effortlessly down the field.
4:26 3d quarter, Patriots 34, Redskins 27: While you were blinking the Patriots scored again. This time it was Wes Welker on the receiving end of a 24-yard touchdown pass from Tom Brady. Woeful Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall burned again. Brady 8 of 10 for 141 yards and two scores in the second half.
6:58 3d quarter, Patriots 27, Redskins 27: We’ve got ourselves a shootout in Washington. The Patriots defensive backfield has more holes than a pound of swiss cheese as James Ihedigbo and Devin McCourty were caught out of position after Redskins WR David Anderson snuck into a wide open corner of the end zone to grab a 6-yard touchdown catch to tie it up again.
9:21 3d quarter: Ouch. A late shot to the back of the head on RB Evan Royster by Vince Wilfork results in a 15-yard penalty and puts the fast-moving Redskins on the NE 18-yard line. Helu has gone over 100 yards rushing for the third consecutive week for Washington.
12:05 3d quarter, Patriots 27, Redskins 20: Gronkowski does it again, a touchdown catch for the tight end touchdown king, No. 15 on the season. Brady connected with Gronk on a 37-yard TD pass over the middle of the field where the Patriots tight end ran right over rookie outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan. After the TD, Gronk jumped into the first row seats into the arms of a Patriots fan. The Washington fans didn’t seem to get a kick out of the playfulness. That’s five catches for 155 yards and two touchdowns for Gronkowski.
0:00 half time, Patriots 20, Redskins 20: A wild first half has just concluded with the Patriots unable to get the touchdown after being first and goal following the Fletcher foul. But Gostkowski hit a 24-yard field goal to tie it up. The drive: 8 plays, 75 yards, in 2:13. Stay tuned for some quick hits from the Globe’s Greg Bedard shortly.
1:39 2d quarter: Ho-hum, just a 50-yard pass to Rob Gronkowski from Tom Brady has the Patriots inside the Redskins 20. Later in the drive, Redskins LB London Fletcher went too close to Tom Brady’s head after a run and slide by the Patriots QB, picking up a controversial personal foul.
2:13 2d quarter, Redskins 20, Patriots 17: The Redskins couldn’t punch it in but they take the lead on a 25-yard Gano field goal. The drive: 11 plays, 71 yards, in 6:41. Redskins RB Roy Helu looks like he will go over 100 yards for the third consecutive week; he’s stepped it up on the second quarter and now has 80 yards rushing on 16 carries. In other stats, Grossman (9 for 15, 145 yards, 1 TD) is having a better day on paper than Tom Brady (8 for 18, 117 yards, 1 TD).
4:15 2d quarter: In what looks like a terrible call from here, an interception by Devin McCourty was called back after Andre Carter was called for hitting below the knee when he tried to wrap up Rex Grossman. A turnover turns into a Redskins first down at the 11-yard line.
7:43 2d quarter: Another big catch by Stallworth, who has three catches for 84 yards today. Washington moving into NE territory again, and the defensive backfield is having some problems with the Redskins’ passing game.
8:58 2d quarter, Patriots 17, Redskins 17: Some red zone mishaps for the Patriots, most notable a drop by Aaron Hernandez in the end zone on a pass that was a bit behind him. But NE did tie it up on a 23-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski. The drive: 16 plays, 72 yards, in 5:55.
10:53 2d quarter: Remember Chad Ochocinco? The seemingly forgotten wideout just pulled in a 15-yard third-down catch on his usual sideline route to get the ball to the Washington 24.
12:17 2d quarter: Patriots moving the ball. First and 10 from the Washington 39. A seemingly trapped Tom Brady scrambled around and turned and fired a tremendous 8-yard pass to old reliable Wes Welker to keep this drive going.
14:49 2d quarter, Redskins 17, Patriots 14: The old razzle-dazzle puts the Redskins on top. Grossman hands off to Helu, who gets it to wide receiver Brandon Banks, who heaved it to Santana Moss for a touchdown. Kyle Arrington was beaten on the play. The drive: 1 huge play covering 49 yards in 11 seconds. The Redskins have used big plays through the air to get themselves on top in this game.
0:00 1st quarter: Patriots forced to punt as Tom Brady was sacked for a 5-yard loss back to the NE 11 by Stephen Bowen and Barry Cofield.
5:49 1st quarter, Patriots 14, Redskins 10: Old friend Jabar Gaffney scores his fourth touchdown of the season after a crushing pass interference call early in the drive on Devin McCourty. The Redskins drive: 8 plays, 84 yards, in 4:29.
5:49 1st quarter, Patriots 14, Redskins 3: The play stands. Gronk was not out of bounds or down on contact. And what does Gronk do next? Touchdown. Gronkowski’s 14th touchdown reception of the season, and he is now in sole possession of the all-time record for tight ends in a season. The drive: 2 plays, 60 yards, in 0:53 seconds.
5:54 1st quarter: You can’t stop Rob Gronkowski and the Redskins can’t even contain him. Gronkowski caught a Brady pass and just ran over the Redskins defenders and scrambled all the way down to the 11-yard line with another highlight reel play. Washington challenges the ruling, thinking Gronk was down on contact after the catch. We’ll see if it gets overturned.
6:42 1st quarter: Another mistake by Washington as kicker Graham Gano shanks the kickoff out of bounds after the field goal. Here come the Patriots with good field position near the 40.
6:42 1st quarter, Patriots 7, Redskins 3: Redskins have to settle for the field goal and Rex Grossman looked confused, and appears a little banged up after that series. The Redskins drive: 11 plays, 75 yards, in 5:24.
8:06 1st quarter: Redskins RB Roy Helu tried twice to bust it straight in with a run but Vince Wilfork and company has stuffed the Redskins on the goal line. Now Washington has a false start and the ball will move back to the NE 6 yard line for third down.
10:47 1st quarter: Rex Grossman needed a big play and he got it. A surprising 51 yard completion down the NE 14 after Grossman heaved it downfield to Donte Stallworth. McCourty got beat on the play. The longest pass this year by the Redskins.
12:06 1st quarter, Patriots 7, Washington 0: Andre Carter hit QB Rex Grossman from the blind side as Washington attempted to get a first down from their own 5-yard line. Grossman coughed up the ball and Vince Wilfork recovers in the end zone for a Patriots touchdown. Not a good start for the Redskins if they hope to be competitive in this game.
12:58 1st quarter: The Redskins will have to go a long way to score as Zoltan Mesko and the Patriots special teams defense has pinned Washington back to their 4-yard line to start.
13:30 1st quarter: The Patriots start strong with Brady coming out with five receivers, which resulted in a 24-yard completion to Aaron Hernandez and New England was on the move to the Redskins 40. But that’s where the drive ended as Brady misfired on a couple of passes following the big gain to Hernandez.
13:52 1st quarter: The Redskins went three and out with the third-down pass nearly picked off by Devin McCourty. Vince Wilfork had a big stuff for the Patriots during the drive.
Washington will start at the 21-yard line.
The Redskins won the coin toss and will receive the ball.