The Patriots really wanted to send the Steelers a message. And send a message they did. After Sunday’s 39-26 rout of Pittsburgh, the Pats showed that no matter the venue they can still beat out the Steelers when it matters most. SI.com’s Don Banks explains that the Patriots were on a mission during Sunday’s matchup to show that they are in fact in contention for a spot in the Super Bowl. So what happened to the Steelers?
Well a tour-de-force performance from Tom Brady from the now 7-2 team didn’t help matters, but Pittsburgh’s problems could be a little deeper. With Max Starks, Ramon Foster, among others sidelined with injuries, the Steelers were missing the depth that it needed to put up a fight against the Patriots.
But despite the impressive win by New England, it’s not time for the team to rest on its laurels just yet – especially when it comes to their kicking. Both teams struggled mightily on the kicking front with Pittsburgh’s Max Reed and the Pats’ Shayne Graham. But tied with just two other teams for the season’s best record, Patriots kicking issue aren’t putting much of a damper on their big show hopes.
NFL aside, there is plenty going on in the NCAA and NBA to keep you entertained tonight:
Denver Nuggets vs. Phoenix Suns (9:00 p.m., ET) – Denver will be battling against history when the Nuggets take the court at US Airways Center tonight to face the Phoenix Suns. The boys from Denver gave lost in 11 straight matchups against Phoenix and have not won a game against the Suns since Carmelo Anthony’s rookie season. I’m guessing Denver is looking to change that.
Valparaiso Crusaders vs. Kansas Jayhawks (8:00 p.m., ET) – Coming off a less than stellar showing against Longwood, the Jayhawks will look to extend its 60-game winning streak they take on the Valparaiso Crusaders. The Crusaders just scored their highest-scoring game in nearly five years.
By The Numbers
15 – Lead that Denny Hamlin currently holds over fellow Chaser Jimmie Johnson heading into the championship finale at Homestead-Miami next weekend. SI.com’s Tom Bowles takes a look at a wild weekend at Phoenix in his Five Things.
22 – Number of three pointers that the Suns dropped on the Lakers during their game Sunday night. The team just missed beating the NBA’s 23 three-pointers record, but stilled managed a 121-116 win against Los Angeles.
1940 – Year of the first game ever played in Duke’s legendary Cameron Indoor Stadium. The No. 1-ranked Blue Devils crushed Princeton in a 97-60 rout Sunday night. The game turned out to be largely disastrous for the Tigers, as the team hadn’t allowed that many points since a 1968 loss against North Carolina and hadn’t had more turns since its 29 against Maryland in 1998.