Kyle Arrington on M&M: Wes Welker ‘one of the most talented guys I’ve matched up against’
|11.25.13 at 1:32 pm ET|
After trailing 24-0 at halftime, Arrington and New England’s defense stymied Denver in the second half and paved the way for a Tom Brady-led comeback.
“We just rallied behind each other, played for each other and had confidence not only in ourselves but in our teammates,” Arrington said. “We were just battle-tested, and we’re going to fight to the very end.”
The Patriots scored 31 unanswered points to start the second half, then eventually won on a Stephen Gostkowski 31-yard field goal in overtime.
“It’s hard to play a complete 60-minute football game, but just credit our guys who just kept battling and fighting,” Arrington said. “As long as there’s time left on that clock, we’re going to battle.”
The New England offense lost three fumbles in the first quarter, putting the defense in a number of inauspicious positions.
“[There was] naturally a little frustration, because we dug ourselves quite a hole, but to come back and win it in that fashion, it’s very rewarding,” Arrington said. “To be in a hole like that, and just crawl our way out of it slowly but surely, it’s a testament to the character of the guys in our locker room.”
The defense forced the Broncos to rely on the ground game, as quarterback Peyton Manning was not sharp in the cold weather. He threw the ball 36 times but only accumulated 150 yards, and threw one interception.
“We just try to keep the die rolling on Peyton,” Arrington said. “Obviously he’s very cerebral, he’s one of the smartest quarterbacks of our generation, so you can’t just give it to him pre-snap, you’ve got to disguise it a little bit.”
Arrington often drew the assignment of covering former Patriot Wes Welker in the slot. Welker caught four passes for 31 yards and was targeted eight times.
“I can’t say enough great things about the talent he has on the football field,”said Arrington, who made five tackles and defended one pass. “He’s one of the most talented guys I’ve come across or matched up against, and also one of the hardest-working guys as well. It just equals a complete player.”