You might not follow the NBA, but something incredible happened on Friday night: Phoenix Suns G Devin Booker became the 6th player in league history to score 70 points in a single game, but the Suns still lost 130-120 to the Boston Celtics.
That’s pretty crazy. It would be like Tom Brady throwing for 500 yards in a loss, or Rob Gronkowski scoring four touchdowns in a losing effort. So with Booker’s effort in mind, here are the Patriots five best performances in a losing effort under head coach Bill Belichick.
5. RB LeGarrette Blount score 3 touchdowns in 2016 Week 10 vs Seattle Seahawks
We kick off the list with a recent game, as Blount rushed for 69 yards and 3 touchdowns in a 31-24 losing effort to the Seahawks this past season. Blount probably should have score four touchdowns, but some questionable playcalling at the end of the game cost him the chance.
The Patriots had marched down the field to the 2-yard line with 43 seconds left in the game for a first-and-goal situation. Instead of letting Blount, who had three scores on the day, try to run the ball in, the Patriots decided to only let Blount run once, favoring two QB Tom Brady sneaks and a fade pass to TE Rob Gronkowski.
4. WR Randy Moss gains 179 yards and 2 touchdowns in 2009 Week 10 vs Indianapolis Colts
In the infamous Fourth-and-Two game, the Patriots wasted an incredible performance by Randy Moss and blew a 34-21 lead with just 4:17 left in the game. Moss gained 179 yards and 2 touchdowns on 9 receptions, including a score to give the Patriots a 31-14 lead at the start of the fourth quarter.
The Colts came back to win 35-34 on a Peyton Manning touchdown pass to Reggie Wayne with 16 seconds left in the game.
3. QB Tom Brady picks up 4 touchdowns in 2015 Week 15 loss vs Philadelphia Eagles
Brady threw two interceptions as the short-handed Patriots lost to the Eagles 35-28, but his overall performance was extremely notable, and that’s why he makes the list. Brady threw for 312 yards and 3 touchdowns, rushed for another 17 yards and 1 touchdown, and added a 36-yard reception. This versatility helps him make the list that celebrates ridiculous performances in a loss.
Brady threw a pick-six at the goal line and his other interception led to another Eagles touchdown, so Brady basically helped both teams equally.
2. WR Wes Welker gains 217 yards and 2 touchdowns in 2011 Week 3 vs Buffalo Bills
Losing to the Bills has been rare for the Patriots under Belichick, so it was notable for the Patriots to blow a 21-0 lead to lose to the Ryan Fitzpatrick-led Bills 34-31.
Welker gained 217 receiving yards and 2 touchdowns on 16 receptions and added 19 yards on a run. TE Rob Gronkowski could have also made the list with 109 yards and 2 touchdowns on 7 receptions. But Brady threw four interceptions and the Patriots were unable to keep their lead.
1. QB Matt Cassel throws for 400 yards, runs for 62 in 2008 Week 11 vs New York Jets
The Patriots lost 34-31 to the Jets in overtime, but Cassel put on one heckuva show. Cassel threw for 400 yards and 3 touchdowns, and rushed for 62 more yards. Cassel led a 62-yard game-tying drive with 1:04 left in the game that was capped off with a 16-yard touchdown pass to WR Randy Moss, but the Jets received the ball to start overtime.
QB Brett Favre led the Jets on a 13-play, 64-yard drive to open up overtime and chewed up 7:45 of clock, before New York settled for a game-winning 34-yard field goal. Cassel put up a statline for the ages, but it wasn’t enough to secure a Patriots victory.