NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (7-3) at NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (10-0)
Monday, Nov. 30, 2009 - Louisiana Superdome (68,000) - 8:30 p.m. EDT
The New England Patriots will face the 10-0 New Orleans Saints on Monday Night Football from the Louisiana Superdome this week. It will be the second time in three weeks that the Patriots will face an undefeated opponent on national television after facing the 8-0 Colts on Nov. 15th in Indianapolis. The last NFL teams to face two games against teams that were 8-0 or better in the same season were Kansas City and San Diego in 1998 when both faced Denver twice. The Broncos won their first 13 games to start the season that year.
The Patriots have won 17 consecutive games against the NFC with the last loss coming in Week 2 of the 2005 season when Carolina beat the Patriots, 27-17 (9/18/05). New England is 2-0 against NFC teams so far in 2009.
TELEVISION: This week's game will be nationally televised by ESPN and can be seen in Boston on WCVB-TV Channel 5. Mike Tirico, Ron Jaworski and Jon Gruden will call the game. Suzy Kolber and Michele Tafoya will be the sideline reporters.
NATIONAL RADIO:This week's game will be broadcast to a national audience by Westwood One. Kevin Harlan and Boomer Esiason will call the game. Mark Malonewill be the sideline reporter.
RADIO: 98.5 FM, The Sports Hub, is the flagship station for the Patriots Radio Network. A complete listing of the network's 36 stations can be found here. Play-by-play broadcaster Gil Santos is in his 33rd season as the voice of the Patriots and will call the action along with Patriots Hall of FamerGino Cappelletti. Santos and Cappelletti are celebrating their 26th season as a tandem.
STRONG IN THE SECOND HALF
The Patriots have traditionally stepped things up a notch as the calendar has flipped to November. Since 2001, New England has done a remarkable job of finishing the season strong, compiling a 72-18 (.800) record after Nov. 1, including playoff games. Additionally, since 2001, the Patriots are 52-10 (.839) in games played after Thanksgiving Day and are 23-4 (.852) in games played after Christmas.
The Patriots will square off with the New Orleans Saints in the regular season for the first time in four years. The last time the teams tangled in the regular season was on Nov. 20, 2005 when the Patriots beat New Orleans 24-17 in the Saints first regular-season visit to Gillette Stadium.
This week's game marks the first time the Patriots will travel to New Orleans for a game against the Saints since the 1998 season. It will be New England's first trip to New Orleans since the Super Bowl XXXVI victory over St. Louis (2/3/02).
The inter-conference foes will meet for just the third time in the last 10 seasons, with the Patriots riding a three-game winning streak after capturing contests in 1998, 2001 and 2005. The series dates back to 1972, when the Patriots claimed a 17-10 victory at Tulane Stadium as Jim Plunkett threw a pair of touchdowns and the Patriots defense intercepted Saints signal caller Archie Manning three times.
Record in Foxborough, 4-3
- Record at Schaefer/Sullivan/Foxboro Stadium, 3-3
- Record at Gillette Stadium, 1-0
Record in New Orleans, 4-0
- Record at Tulane Stadium, 1-0
- Record at Louisiana Superdome, 3-0
Total Points in the Series, Patriots 253, Saints 214
Bill Belichick vs. New Orleans, 2-1 (2-0 with New England)
Sean Payton vs. New England, 0-0
Tom Brady vs. New Orleans, 2-0
Drew Brees vs. New England (while with SD), 2-0
PATRIOTS IN NEW ORLEANS
The Patriots have played in three Super Bowls in New Orleans at the Louisiana Superdome. New England has reached the Super Bowl three of the last four times the game has been played in New Orleans. The 1985 Patriots qualified for the first Super Bowl in team history, but lost to the Chicago Bears, 46-10, in Super Bowl XX. In the 1996 season, the Patriots reached their second Super Bowl in the Crescent City and fell to the Green Bay Packers, 35-21, in Super Bowl XXXI. New England returned to the Big Easy following the 2001 season for Super Bowl XXXVI and defeated the St. Louis Rams, 20-17, to claim the first NFL title in team history. The next Super Bowl scheduled for New Orleans will be Super Bowl XLVII played on Feb. 3, 2013.
- Patriots LB Rob Ninkovich was a member of the New Orleans Saints in 2006 and 2008.
- Patriots LB Junior Seau and Saints QB Drew Brees were teammates on the San Diego Chargers from 2001-02.
- Drew Brees was also teammates with Patriots T Matt Lightat Purdue from 1997-2000.
- Patriots RB Fred Taylor and Saints backup QB Mark Brunellwere teammates on the Jacksonville Jaguars from 1998-2003. Brunell was also on Jacksonville with Patriots P Chris Hansonfrom 2001-03, as was Saints G Jamar Nesbit in 2003.
- Saints TE Darnell Dinkins played on the Baltimore Ravens with Patriots LB Adalius Thomas from 2004-05 and on the Cleveland Browns with Patriots CB Leigh Bodden from 2006-07.
- Saints LB Jo-Lonn Dunbarplayed collegiately at Boston College and was teammates with Patriots DL Ron Brace from 2004-07.
- Saints FB Kyle Eckel played in 12 games and scored two touchdowns for the Patriots in 2007.
- Saints FB Heath Evans played four seasons for the Patriots, from 2005-08. Evans was also teammates with Patriots CB Shawn Springs on the Seattle Seahawks from 2001-03.
- Patriots LB Tully Banta-Cain and Saints LB Scott Fujita played college football together at California from 1999-2001.
- Saints CB Randall Gaywas a New England Patriot from 2004-07. Gay and Saints WR Devrey Henderson were teammates with Patriots LB/special teamer Eric Alexander at LSU from 2000-03 and Patriots DE Jarvis Green from 2000-01.
- Patriots QB Tom Brady and Saints C Jonathan Goodwin were teammates at Michigan in 1999. Goodwin was later teammates on the New York Jets with Patriots TE Chris Bakerfrom 2002-05.
- Patriots TE Benjamin Watson and Saints DE Charles Grantwere teammates at Georgia in 2001.
- Saints CB Jabari Greerand Patriots captain Sam Aiken played together for the Buffalo Bills from 2004-08. Aiken was also teammates on the Bills with Saints DLAnthony Hargrovefrom 2006-07. Saints S Pierson Prioleau was also teammates with Sam Aiken on the Bills from 2003-04 and with Patriots RB Fred Tayloron the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2008.
- Patriots LB Jerod Mayo, Saints WR Robert Meachem and Saints LB Marvin Mitchell were teammates at Tennessee from 2004-06.
- Patriots RT Nick Kaczur and Saints WR Lance Moore were teammates at Toledo from 2001-04.
- Patriots LB Gary Guyton and Saints S Chris Reisplayed together on Georgia Tech from 2004-05.
- Patriots QB Tom Brady and Saints Head Coach Sean Payton hail from San Mateo, Calif.
- Saints TE David Thomas was originally drafted by New England in the third round of the 2006 draft and played for the Patriots until being traded to New Orleans at the end of the 2009 training camp.
PATRIOTS ON MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALLThe New England Patriots are 17-21 all-time on Monday Night Football, including a streak of six-straight wins on Monday Night dating back to a 31-21 win at the New York Jets on December 26, 2005. The Patriots are 8-8 in home Monday Night Football games and 9-13 on the road. The Patriots opened the 2009 season with a come-from-behind 25-24 win at home against the Buffalo Bills on Monday Night Football.
BRADY ON MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALLQB Tom Brady owns an 8-3 record when playing on Monday Night Football. His best statistical performance on Monday Night Football was the 2009 season opener when he went 39-of-53 for 378 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Patriots to a 25-24 win over Buffalo. He earned AFC Offensive Player of the week for his performance.
PATRIOTS VS. THE NFCThe Patriots have been successful against NFC teams in recent seasons, compiling a 30-4 (.882) regular-season record against the conference since 2001. Including the postseason, the Patriots are 33-5 (.868) against the NFC with a 3-1 Super Bowl record since 2001. During that time span, the Patriots have finished 4-0 against the NFC four times, including the last three seasons (2006-08). The Patriots have won 17 consecutive games against the NFC with the last loss coming in Week 2 of the 2005 season when Carolina beat the Patriots, 27-17 (9/18/05).
The Patriots are 2-0 so far in 2009 against the NFC following a 26-10 win over Atlanta on Sept. 27 at Gillette Stadium and a 35-7 win vs. Tampa Bay on Oct. 25 in London.
PATRIOTS VS. NFC SOUTH
The Patriots play each of the teams from the NFC South this season as part of the NFL's schedule rotation that was implemented in 2002. New England lost its first game against the division, dropping a 27-17 decision at Carolina in Week Two in 2005. Following that loss, the Patriots have not lost to an NFC team. The Patriots hold an all-time mark of 21-13 (including postseason) against the four teams that make up the NFC South.