1. Go Go Gadget Gronk
This was the first moment during the season where I thought the Patriots had a legitimate chance to win it all. New England rebounded from a terrible opening quarter of the season to decimate the Bengals and Bills, and squeaked out a win against the Jets. When the Patriots hosted the Broncos, the top team of the conference at this point in time, it was meant to reveal the true character of New England.
Oh. Oh my. It turns out that the Patriots are robots sent from the future to break the heart of Peyton Manning. Rob Gronkowski had no business catching this pass in traffic, yet he does because, of course. Gronk had been back for a couple weeks, but this was back to transcendent Gronk. This was the Patriots making an emphatic statement that they were the team to beat in the AFC, and it was a title they hold to this day.
16. Rutgers 3rd Round Pick
Zero people watched this throw and felt good about it. No one did. Patriots fans hearts sank as they thought the Ravens were about to respond to the New England comeback attempts with a dagger of Baltimores Past. Ravens fans hated the decision because Joe Flacco, there's nearly two minutes left with a timeout and it's only second down, what are you thinking?!
Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith is bracketed by the Patriots two 2013 3rd round picks from Rutgers, cornerback Logan Ryan and safety Duron Harmon. Harmon was a headscratcher of a selection since he wasn't invited to the combine, but as a two-time First Team All Big East selection, it was definitely the result of oversight. Ryan had a down season after a quality rookie year.
This is a play that the Ravens would use to beat the Patriots, and one they have used multiple times, and it would always result in either a completion of a defensive pass interference call. Not today.