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Game Notes: Patriots at Buccaneers

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BRANDON MERIWEATHER SCORES ON AN INTERCEPTION RETURNBrandon Meriweather scored his first NFL interception touchdown on a 39-yard interception on the first series of the game. It is the first interception returned for a touchdown for New England since Eugne Wilson scored on a five-yard interception return vs. N.Y. Jets on Dec. 16, 2007.

MERIWEATHER REGISTERS TWO INTERCEPTIONS
Meriweather had two interceptions for 70 yards, including a 39-yard touchdown return in the first six minutes of the game. He is the first Patriot to have two interceptions in a game since Asante Samual had two vs. Philadelphia on Nov. 25, 2007.

PATRIOTS FORCE TURNOVER IN 15 STRAIGHT GAMESThe Patriots have forced at least one forced turnover in 15 straight games, the longest current streak in the NFL. The Patriots had three interceptions against Tampa Bay.

SAM AIKEN SCORES FIRST CAREER TOUCHDOWN ON PATS LONGEST PLAY OF THE 2009 SEASON
Sam Aiken scored when he caught a short pass from Tom Brady and raced 54 yards down the sidelines for his first NFL touchdown to give New England a 21-0 second quarter lead. The 54-yard play is the longest play of the season for New England, besting a 48-yard pass play from Brady to Wes Welker vs. Tennessee (10/18). It was Brady's longest touchdown pass since a 65-yard touchdown pass to WR Randy Moss in the 2007 regular-season-finale at the New York Giants, Dec. 29, 2007.

MOSS MOVED UP ALL-TIME RECEPTION LISTRandy Moss entered the game ranked 12th in NFL history with 881 receptions. He added five receptions to move past Keenan McCardell (883) into 11th place on the all-time list with 886 career receptions.

FAULK BECOMES 26TH RUNNING BACK IN NFL HISTORY WITH AT LEAST 400 RECEPTIONS
Kevin Faulk entered the game needing two receptions for 400. He added two receptions against Tampa Bay and is now the 26th running back in NFL history with at least 400 receptions.

FAULK MOVES UP PATRIOTS RUSHING LIST
Faulk (3,245) needed five yards to pass John Stephens (3,249) into sixth place on New England's All-Time Rushing list. He added 19 yards to take over sixth place with 3,264 rushing yards. Don Calhoun is in fifth place with 3,391 rushing yards. Sam Cunningham is the Patriots' all-time leader with 5,453 yards.

A JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT: SEAU IS ON A WINNING STREAKLB Junior Seau has won 24 conseuctive regular-season games in which he appeared with New England, tying DT Maulty Moore of the Miami Dolphins (1972-73) for the longest personal winning streak since the merger. Seau's record stretches from two wins in November of 2006 (he finished the 2006 on IR), 16 regular-season wins in 2007, the final four games of 2008 and the wins over Tennessee and Tampa Bay in 2009. Seau had been tied at 23 with former Patriots RB Patrick Pass, who won 23 staright (2003-4).

WELKER KEEPS IT UPWes Welker finished with 10 receptions and has now caught six or more passes in 19 of the last 21 regular-season games. Welker has seven career regular-season games with 10 or more receptions. He has three games with 10 or more in 2009, with 12 vs. Buffalo and 10 vs. Tennessee. It is the first time in his career that he has had back-to-back games with 10 or more receptions.

WELKER MOVES UP ON THE ALL-TIME RECEPTIONS LIST
Welker entered the game with 259 receptions with New England and added 10 receptions against Tampa Bay to move past Tony Collins (2261) into ninth place on the Patriots' All-Time Receptions list with 269 . Jim Colclough in eighth place with 283 receptions.

WELKER GOES OVER 100 YARDS FOR SECOND STRAIGHT WEEK
Welker caught 10 passes for 107 yards. It is his 10th NFL 100-yard game and second of the 2009 NFL season after registering a career-high 150 yards receiving vs. Tennessee.

BRADY GOES OVER 300 YARDS FOR THE SECOND STRAIGHT WEEK
Tom Brady finished the game 23-of-32 for 308 yards to register his 26th NFL 300-yard game, tying Drew Beldsoe (26) for the most 300-yard games in franchise history. It is Brady's third 300-yard game of the 2009 season after finishing with 378 yards passing vs. Buffalo and 380 yards passing vs. Tennessee.

BRADY SETS TEAM RECORD FOR LONGEST STRECTH BETWEEN INTERCEPTIONS
Tom Brady went 183 throws between interceptions, setting a New England record. Drew Bledsoe went 179 consecutive throws without an interception (10/23/95 – 11/26/95). Brady was intercepted in the first quarter against the Jets and was not intercepted again until the second quarter against Tampa Bay.

BRADY THROWS FOR THREE TOUCHDOWN PASSES
Brady threw for three tocuchdowns against Tampa Bay. He has thrown for two or more touchdowns in a game 66 times. He has thrown for three touchdowns 22 times and New England has a 58-8 record in those games. Brady has thrown for two or more touchdowns in a game four times so far in 2009 with two vs. Buffalo, two at Denver, six vs. Tennessee and the three against Tampa Bay. He has thrown three touchdowns in a game 22 times. The Patriots are 20-2 when he has three touchdowns in a game.

BRADY AND THE PATRIOTS ARE HOT IN OCTOBERThe Patriots improved to 25-5 in the month of October since 2003. Since 2006, Brady has a 12-1 (.923) record in October.

NEW ENGLAND IMPROVE STREAK TO 17 STRAIGHT WINS OVER NFC OPPONETS
The Patriots improved to 17 straight victories over NFC opponents. The Patriots are now 2-0 in 2009 against NFC opponents with a 26-10 win over Atlanta and the 35-7 win over Tampa Bay. Dating back to October 9, 2005, Brady is 13-0 against NFC opponents.

80 UNANSWERED POINTS
The Patriots scored 80 unanswered points, including the 59-0 win over Tennessee and accumulating a 21-0 lead in the second quarter against Tampa Bay. That stretch of scoring is the most in a single season since Buffalo had 86 in 1992. The 80 is the most in Patriots' history.

BRANDON TATE MAKES NFL DEBUT
Third-round draft pick WR Brandon Tate made his NFL debut and gained 11 yards on an end-around on his first play.

PATRIOTS OFF TO GOOD START
The Patriots are 5-2 in the 2009 season and have started the season with at least five wins in their first seven games for the fourth straight season.

BUTLER PICk
Darius Butler picked off a Tampa Bay pass at the end of the first half and has now had an interception in each of the last two weeks.

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