ANDRE TIPPETT NIGHT AND HALL OF FAME BUST
The Chargers inducted Fred Dean into their hall of fame during a ceremony at halftime of tonight's game. Dean was a member of the 2008 Pro Football Hall of Fame class that also included legendary Patriots linebacker Andre Tippett. The Patriots will also be honoring their 2008 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee. In honor of Tippett's induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the Patriots' Monday, Oct. 20 game against the Denver Broncos will be Andre Tippett Night at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots and their fans will honor the legendary linebacker in a ceremony on the field at halftime of the game. Beginning on Thursday, Oct. 16 and continuing through the weekend, Tippett's Hall of Fame bust will be on display at The Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon. It will be the only time fans can see Tippett's bust up close without traveling to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.
ROAD STREAK ENDS
Tonight's loss ended the Patriots' streak of 12 consecutive regular season road victories, dating back to a Dec. 24, 2006 win against the Jaguars in Jacksonville. The Patriots' 12-game road winning streak is the second-longest road winning streak in NFL history (San Francisco, 18, 1988-90). Three teams have won 11 straight road games (San Diego 1960-61, San Francisco 1987-88, Pittsburgh 2004-05).
FREQUENT FOESTonight's game was the Patriots' fourth meeting with the Chargers in the last 22 months. The Patriots were 3-0 in the previous three games, including two playoff victories -- a 24-21 win at Qualcomm Stadium in the 2006 Divisional Playoffs and a 21-12 victory at Gillette Stadium in the 2007 AFC Championship Game. The Patriots also won 38-14 at home against the Chargers in Week 2 last season. The Chargers are the Patriots' most frequent opponent since the beginning of the 2007 calendar year.
GOSTKOWSKI'S STREAK ENDS AT 17Stephen Gostkowski missed a 48-yard field goal attempt in the first quarter, marking his first regular-season miss since Dec. 9, 2007. Gostkowski had made 10 straight field goals to open the 2008 season and had a streak of 17 straight field goals dating back to last season. His string of 17 straight successful regular-season field goals was the third longest consecutive field goal streak in Patriots history, trailing only a 25-kick streak by Adam Vinatieri from 1996-97 and a 23-kick streak by Vinatieri in 2004. Gostkowski nailed a 47-yard boot in the second quarter to improve to 11-for-12 (91.7 percent) on the season.
Wes Welker had nine catches in tonight's game, marking the fifth straight game to open the season that Welker has had six or more catches. Welker has 36 receptions in 2008 and is averaging 7.2 catches per game this season after averaging seven catches per game in 2007, his first season with the Patriots. Welker's 112 catches in 2007 tied for the league lead and set an NFL record for most receptions by a player in his first season with a new team.
Ty Warren recovered a fumble by Jacob Hester in the fourth quarter, marking the Patriots' first defensive fumble recovery of the season. The fumble recovery was the sixth of Warren's career, and set up an 8-play, 46-yard drive that ended in a 1-yard touchdown run by Sammy Morris.
Sammy Morris scored on a 1-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to make the score 30-10. The touchdown was Morris's third rushing score of the season and was the 20th rushing touchdown of his 9-year NFL career. He also has one career receiving touchdown. Morris's three total touchdowns lead the team through five games and equal his total of three touchdowns in 2007.
MORRIS CATCHSammy Morris gained 28 yards on a pass play in the third quarter, tying the second longest reception of his career. The catch trails only his 44-yard reception on Oct. 22, 2006 while he was with the Miami Dolphins. Morris's other 28-yard reception also came that year during the Dolphins' Dec. 10 game against the Patriots. Morris's 28-yard catch tonight set the Patriots up in a first-and-goal from the 1-yard line.
- The Patriots lost a game in October for the first time since 2005, snapping a streak of 11 straight October wins. Prior to falling in San Diego, the Patriots' last loss in October came on Oct. 16, 2005, a 28-20 loss at Denver.
- Ty Warren stuffed LaDainian Tomlinson for a 1-yard loss in the second quarter and stopped him for another 1-yard loss in the fourth quarter.
- Chris Hanson had a 44-yard punt in the second quarter that was downed by Jonathan Wilhite at the Chargers' 3-yard line.
WHITE JERSEY STREAK
The Patriots wore their road white jerseys tonight for the fifth consecutive game after wearing them in each of their first four games, including two home games. The Patriots typically wear their blue jerseys at home, but home teams have the option of choosing which jersey to wear. The 2008 Patriots have yet to wear their blue jerseys.