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Best of the 2010s: The headlines that defined the New England Patriots’ decade

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We take a deep dive into the Pats Pulpit archives to pick the articles that can be used to write the story of the 2010-19 Patriots.

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No team dominated the NFL in the 2010s quite like the New England Patriots. And with the decade slowly nearing its end, we have decided to take a look back at the last 10 years and find what or who defined them for an organization that won three Super Bowls, made more headlines than any other club, and continued its dynastic reign that started in 2001.

Today, we will open the Pats Pulpit archives and look at the headlines that defined the decade for the Patriots.

April 23, 2010: What was Hoodie thinking with Devin McCourty at 27th?! Value, value, value.

“McCourty’s not only a CB — he’s a Punt Returner (the Pats need one; Welker’s hurt, remember?); Kick Returner (need one of those, too; Welker’s hurt, Tate finished 2009 on IR); and he’s a very good gunner and coverage unit man (can always have those, right?). Hoodie loves his special teamers, and McCourty will contribute on all special teams units immediately — that’s a lot of use.” — Comedic.Sans

April 23, 2010: Get to Know New England Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski

“The New England Patriots thought highly enough of new TE Rob Gronkowski to trade up two picks in the 2nd round to nab him early. Of course, tight end is a position of great need and Gronkowski is one of the best in the draft. This pick left first round talent, albeit injured product, Sergio Kindle still on the board. Substituting one injured good for another. [...] If the Patriots believe he’s healthy, he’s the best tight end fit for this team.” — Rich Hill

October 6, 2010: Randy Moss to be Traded to the Vikings for a 3rd Round Pick

“Moss has voiced his displeasure with the organization and is getting his way. He publicly stated that he wasn’t in the Patriots’ long term goals, and by doing so, he broke a top player rule of Bill Belichick’s. No one brings an internal problem to the public eye. That means the player’s history. Gone. For a third round pick.” — Rich Hill

February 6, 2012: Don’t Blame Welker

“We all know that Wes Welker should have caught that 4th quarter throw from quarterback Tom Brady that would have put the Patriots at the Giants’ 20 with a two point lead and less than four minutes to play. But Welker’s drop isn’t the “reason” the Patriots lost. Yeah, that play is going to be tough to watch for a very long time, but the Patriots had plenty of other opportunities.” — Greg Knopping

April 27, 2012: Utilizing Chandler Jones and Dont’a Hightower

“The Patriots have spent their first two draft picks on players for the defensive front seven as Bill Belichick and the front office try to improve their defense in order to be more competitive. They moved up in the draft to grab DE/OLB Chandler Jones and LB Dont’a Hightower. [...] It seems as if the Patriots spent both picks — and moved up — because they are impact-now type of players.” — Rich Hill

June 19, 2013: Aaron Hernandez Questioned, Has Home Searched after Killing

“New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez is being questioned and has had his home search in connection with the killing of a 27 year old man. [...] The Patriots have not commented on the reports. However, the situation has been described by many as fluid. More details will follow as they become available.” — Greg Knopping

November 25, 2013: Patriots vs. Broncos Final Score: What a Comeback! Pats Win 34-31

“Before you knew it, it was halftime, and the Patriots were trailing 24-0. It would be tough to recall a time they had looked so flat in the first half. It was reminiscent of the Ravens playoff game from 2009 or the 49ers game from 2012. A comeback looked improbable considering due to the strong wind. But the comeback did happen.” — Greg Knopping

October 1, 2014: On to Cincinnati: the Patriots have an opportunity for redemption

“At his press conference today, New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick was posed a question about Tom Brady’s age. Belichick, in typical Belichick fashion, deflected the question and stated ‘we’re on to Cincinnati’.” — Greg Knopping

January 10, 2015: Explaining the Patriots Four Offensive Linemen Play

“I’m still shaking from that game. What a tremendous effort all around by everyone involved. After a weird start of the game by the Patriots coaches, opting to play more soft zone on defense and falling behind quickly, New England settled down and dug deep in their play book to take on the Ravens.” — Rich Hill

January 19, 2015: DeflateGate Bolsters the Patriots Haters

“I’m trying to make sense of all of this and how this is even a thing, but I just can’t. If both teams submit their game balls to the refs hours before the game, the balls are all inspected and then marked, and are then kept with an official member of the staff as the game goes on, I just can’t figure out when or how the Patriots would be able to deflate footballs during the course of the game. I don’t know, maybe they did, or maybe there is something I’m missing here. But to be honest, at this point, what the NFL discovers is completely irrelevant; the storyline has been created and is fully and deeply embedded in the psyche of every single Patriots hater on the planet.” — Alec Shane

February 1, 2015: Super Bowl XLIX Final Score: Patriots Win Super Bowl 28-24

“It was ten years in the making, but the New England Patriots have their fourth Super Bowl title of the Tom Brady-Bill Belichick-Robert Kraft era. What. A. Game. It was the greatest 4th quarter comeback in Super Bowl history. The Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 and are Super Bowl XLIX Champions.” — Greg Knopping

March 5, 2015: Patriots Will Not Pick Up Wilfork’s Option

“There are just too many jokes about the size of the hole Wilfork is leaving with his departure, and it’s too early in the morning, so I think I’ll just leave it at that. Thanks for everything, Big Vince. It’s been one hell of a run.” — Alec Shane

July 15, 2016: Tom Brady Will Accept Suspension, Won’t Appeal to SCOTUS

“Science and sworn testimony don’t matter. Facts and evidence don’t matter. If your team gets really good while the current CBA stands as-is, pretty much anything goes. It’s fun now, but it can turn on a dime. I really hope that you never have to deal with something like this.” — Alec Shane

February 5, 2017: Patriots mount greatest comeback in NFL history, beat Falcons 34-28 in overtime

“The Patriots score on their final five drives of the game, and six of their final seven. The defense allowed one score in the second half. QB Tom Brady earned a NFL-record 5th Super Bowl title and 4th Super Bowl MVP award Head coach Bill Belichick will need to update his boat to ‘VII Rings’. How did the Patriots win this? How did they force the comeback? I have no idea. We are all witnesses.” — Rich Hill

March 9, 2017: Patriots expect to sign former Bills CB Stephon Gilmore to 5-year mega-deal

“Only four cornerbacks are slated to receiver $14 million or more per year: Rams CB Trumaine Johnson, Washington CB Josh Norman, Cardinals CB Patrick Peterson, and Seahawks CB Richard Sherman. Does Gilmore fall into that category of player?” — Rich Hill

October 30, 2017: Patriots trade quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to the 49ers

“Trading Garoppolo signifies that the Patriots believe that Brady is capable of playing at a high level for a couple more seasons and the team will try to take advantage of a deep class of quarterbacks in the 2018 NFL Draft to give them a couple years to grow behind Brady.” — Rich Hill

February 4, 2018: Patriots vs Eagles recap: New England can’t overcome bad defense, loses 41-33

“With Tom Brady at quarterback, New England still had a chance. This chance, however, took a hard hit on the second play of the potential game-winning drive: Brady was sacked for the first time all game, lost the football and the Eagles recovered. Philadelphia ran three times in a row en route to a field goal to take a 41-33 lead with a little over one minute left. There was still a little life for the Patriots, though. Unfortunately, the team was unable to get close to the Eagles end zone and saw a last-second Hail Mary fall short.” — Bernd Buchmasser

January 20, 2019: Patriots at Chiefs game report: New England beats Kansas City 37-31 in overtime!

“The New England Patriots defeat the Kansas City Chiefs in overtime with a final score of 37-31. What an incredible ending. The Patriots will go to their third-straight Super Bowl and fourth in five years. This run is unbelievable.” — Rich Hill

February 3, 2019: Patriots win Super Bowl 53, beat Rams 13-3

“New England, after an inconsistent regular season, went on a roll in the postseason behind a stingy defense and an efficient offense — even though it was not at its best for most of the Super Bowl. Still, the Patriots made the plays when they needed to and can now call themselves world champions once again.” — Bernd Buchmasser

March 24, 2019: Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski announces his retirement

“New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski was the most dominant player at his position ever since joining the NFL as a second-round draft pick in 2010. Today, the 29-year old officially ended his career as he announced via a post on Instagram.” — Bernd Buchmasser