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The Patriots are a strong team and have been to Super Bowl couple of times. Luck follows them as we look at their last couple of years.

The Patriots are a strong team and have been to Super Bowl couple of times.   Luck follows them as we look at their last couple of years.  Unlike their Super Bowl appearance two years, earlier the Patriots entered Super Bowl XXXVIII against the Carolina Panthers in
Houston as the favorite team.


After a scoreless first quarter, the Patriots struck first blood as Tom Brady found Deion Brach in the end zone with a short 5-yard pass. After the Panthers tied the game, the Patriots retook the lead in the final seconds of the first half with another short TD pass from Brady to David Givens.


The Panthers would score a quick FG as the game went into halftime with the Pats leading 14-10. After both teams went scoreless in the 3rd Quarter, the 4th Quarter turned into a shootout with the Pats extending their lead to 21-10 before the Panthers struck back with 2 quick touchdowns to take a 22-21 lead. Losing the lead seemed to wake up the Pats, as the drove right back to take a 29-22 lead on a 1 yard pass Mike Vrabel, which was followed by a successful 2-point conversion run by Kevin Faulk.


The Panthers struck right back tying the game at 29 with less the 2 minutes left. Once again, the Pats were in the final minutes of the Super Bowl with the game tied. As he did two years ago, Tom Brady who earned Super Bowl MVP honors drove the Pats into Field Goal range where Adam Vinatieri nailed a 36-yard Field Goal as time expired to give the Patriots their second Super Bowl title in 3 years.

In 2004, coming off two Super Bowl Championships in 3 years the Patriots appeared even stronger with the addition of All-Pro Running Back Corey Dillon from the Cincinnati Bengals. The Patriots got off to a quick start beating the Indianapolis Colts in a Thursday Night season opener 27-24, as Tom Brady out gunned Peyton Manning with 335 yards passing. The Pats would use that win to get off to a rocket start as they set the NFL record for consecutive wins over a two-year stretch at 21 as they topped their 15 wins at the end of 2003 with a 6-0 start.


There luck would end on Halloween as the Patriots allowed 21 points to the Pittsburgh Steelers on the way to a 34-20 loss. The loss would be a mere bump in the road for the Patriots as they won their next six games to easily capture the AFC Eastern Division.


At one point it was smooth sailing until the entire Patriots secondary was injured forcing WR Troy Brown to become a 2-way player. Brown would more then holds his own as the Patriots posted a 14-2 record for the second straight season once again led by one of the top defenses in the NFL. In the playoffs the Pats once again faced the Colts, but with the cold New England winds blowing thru Foxoboro the Colts never have a chance as the Patriots defense harassed Manning all day holding the Colts high powered offense to just 3 points in a solid 20-3 win which earned them a rematch with the Steelers in the AFC Championship Game.


Returning to one of two places the Patriots lost a game during the season, the Patriots were determined to prove that the Halloween loss to end their winning streak was a mere aberration. They would get off to a fast start leading 24-3 at halftime as Rodney Harrison returned an interception 87 yards for a TD in the waning moments of the first half. The Steelers would make a run at the Pats in the second half but the Patriots would keep them at arm length always coming up with a big play to answer any scoring done by the Steelers as they earned a trip to Super Bowl for the third time in 4 years with a 41-27 win.

Super Bowl XXXIX: Facing the Philadelphia Eagles in
Jacksonville the Patriots had a chance to official declare them a dynasty by winning their third Lombardi Trophy in 4 years. The Pats and Eagles were evenly matched as neither side could get the upper hand with the score tied after each of the first 3 quarters. In the 4th Quarter, the Patriots championship experience began to take over as Corey Dillion scored from 2-yards out to give the Patriots a 21-14 lead at the start of the quarter. The Pats defense would hold the Eagles which allowed the Pats to take a 24-14 lead on Adam Vinateiri FG. However, the Eagles would not give up as they scored a long drive to get back within a Field Goal with 1:48 left in the game. After going three and out the Patriots turned to their defense to make sure the lead stood, and wit would as Rodney Harrison interception with 9 seconds remaining sealed the 24-21 win, as the Patriots became just the second team in NFL history to win 3 Super Bowls in 4 years. Earning Super Bowl MVP honors would be WR Deion Branch who tied a record with 11 receptions several of which were on third down to keep a Patriots drive alive.


Now  in 2005, losing both coordinators is tough for any team to overcome, but losing defensive leaders like Teddy Bruschi, Ted Johnson, and Ty Law will hurt even more as the Patriots just wont be able to find the same magic and formula for the 3-peat as they even lose the division title. 



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