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Tom Brady Throws 500th Touchdown Pass in Patriots’ Win

Category: Other Sports,Sports

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Tom Brady reached 500 career touchdown passes as the New England Patriots put together their second straight win after a mediocre start to the season, beating Indianapolis 38-24 on Thursday night.

Brady’s 500th went to Josh Gordon, who was recently acquired from Cleveland, where he was essentially unavailable because of N.F.L. suspensions for all but five games over the past three seasons. But Brady spread the wealth, too, hitting running back James White 10 times for 77 yards, and greeting the return of Julian Edelman by completing seven for 57 yards to him.

Brady also tied Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri, a former teammate, for most N.F.L. victories, with 226.

Brady started off with a pass to Edelman, who was wide open for 9 yards. That drew the first of many loud cheers for the 10th-year veteran receiver in his first game since the 2017 preseason, when he tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his knee. Edelman was also suspended for the first four games this year for violating the N.F.L.’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs.

That was the first of three receptions, totaling 28 yards, for Edelman on the opening, 75-yard touchdown drive, which Brady capped with a 1-yard toss to Cordarrelle Patterson.

The Colts (1-4) had a drive deep into New England (3-2) territory later in the first quarter, but the usually reliable Vinatieri missed a 38-yard field goal.

Nothing was going right for Indianapolis, particularly after Brady led a 72-yard march to his sneak from the 1 in the second quarter. He then took the Patriots 68 yards near the end of the half and hit White for a 6-yard score give New England a 21-3 lead.

Things got even worse for the Colts when Andrew Luck threw a poor pass that Patrick Chung intercepted at midfield, and Stephen Gostkowski made a 45-yard field goal for a 24-3 halftime lead for the Patriots.

Luck did extend his string of games with a touchdown pass by hitting Eric Ebron on a 14-yarder in the third quarter. Luck, who showed a strong arm despite missing all of 2017 with shoulder issues, has thrown a touchdown in 28 successive games, most of any current quarterback.

The Colts cut the deficit to 24-10 with a touchdown early in the second half, and then got the ball back when Matthias Farley intercepted a pass bobbled by Chris Hogan. But Indianapolis could do nothing with the opportunity. The rookie Jordan Wilkins had the ball stripped from his hands by Devin McCourty four plays later.

But a second pick of Brady that was not his fault — Rob Gronkowski had the ball stolen and Najee Goode wound up with it — helped the Colts get back into it for a short time.

Luck brought his team 80 yards, helped by two big third-down throws to Ebron, and Eric Swoope caught a 13-yard scoring pass to make it 24-17.

That’s when Brady took over for good, hitting the half-century mark for touchdown throws by connecting on a 34-yard pass to Gordon, the 71st player to catch a touchdown pass from Brady — also an N.F.L. record.


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