“Now we’re going someplace warm, because I’m freezing my you-know-what off,” Brady said.
He badly missed his first two passes — he threw a total of two incompletions in 28 attempts last week in the win over Jacksonville.
A few minutes later, Brady lofted a poor toss that Quentin Jammer intercepted. Belichick talked this week about the Chargers’ “ball disruption” and turnovers certainly were a focus — San Diego led the league in takeaways, the Pats had the fewest giveaways.
San Diego turned Jammer’s pickoff into Kaeding’s 26-yard field goal with 2:55 left in the period for a 3-0 lead.
This wasn’t what the home fans expected, and they grew silent as the Chargers refused to back down, engaging in several post-play scuffles with the heavily favored Patriots. Tomlinson stepped in to calm hard-hitting former teammate Rodney Harrison after some early roughhousing.
Maroney plunged in from the 1 barely over a minute into the second quarter and, with very light flurries falling, the Patriots were ahead for good.
Brady later hit Jabar Gaffney over the middle for a 12-yard TD and a 14-6 lead, prompting several of the Patriots to celebrate. Brady merely walked off the field with his head down.
“We’re not going to get all carried away with the undefeated season,” linebacker Mike Vrabel said. “We did that in the regular season.”
Notes: This marked the first time in more than 100 years that a team in the four major pro sports opened a season with 18 straight victories. The record for wins to start a season was set in 1884 by St. Louis in baseball’s Union Association, the Elias Sports Bureau said. ... Brady threw a TD pass in his 14th straight postseason game. ... Maroney has scored a touchdown in five straight games. ... The Chargers beat the Boston Patriots 51-10 for the 1963 AFL championship at old Balboa Stadium. The Patriots played that season at Fenway Park.
PFT: Jets rookie quarterback Geno Smith said the draft process taught him an important lesson on taking criticism.
Y! Sports: Redskins fans found what appeared to be the wedding registry for Robert Griffin III and fiancee Rebecca Liddicoat, and they helped out their star QB.
Turner proud of Chargers
Jan. 20: Coach praises Rivers, all his players after loss to Patriots.
2013 SNF Schedule
Check out the 2013 Sunday Night Football schedule.
Latest from ProFootballTalk
Video: Football from NBC Sports
Chudzinski: 'Too early' to name a QB
Following Thursday's OTA, Browns coach Rob Chudzinski speaks to the media about his team’s brewing quarterback controversy. He feels the competition will aid in each QB’s progression as a passer, but he isn’t ready to name a starter for Week 1.
Check out some of the NFL cheerleaders from across the league.