LeGarrette Blount: ‘We feel like we’re the most physical team no matter who we play’
|01.12.14 at 2:13 am ET|
FOXBORO — LeGarrette Blount isn’t going to question what’s working.
On Saturday night, he continued his red-hot running that he showed in the final five weeks of the regular season, when he rushed for nearly 600 yards and nine touchdowns in the final month.
On Saturday night, he nearly matched half that touchdown total in his first career playoff game. Blount ran it into the end zone four times, surpassing Curtis Martin‘s three touchdowns of Jan. 1997 against the Steelers, and just one shy of the NFL record set by Ricky Watters for the 49ers on Jan. 15, 1994 against the Giants.
Blount led a team effort that totaled six rushing touchdowns, with the other two coming from Stevan Ridley. The six rushing touchdowns was just one shy of the seven by the Bears against the Redskins in the 1940 NFL Championship, won by Chicago, 73-0.
‘That’s what we go into the game thinking,” Blount said. “We feel like we’re the most physical team no matter who we play, and that’s how we practice, that’s how we play, and that’s our mindset.
‘We didn’t know that we [were] going to be able to dominate, but we came in, our game plan was to play tough and play physical and go out there and get a win by any means necessary, and if we weren’t able to run the ball, we always got No. 12 that’s going to put the team on his back and do great things like he’s always done in his whole career,” Blount said.
That No. 12 happens to be Tom Brady, who didn’t throw a single touchdown pass for just the fourth time in his NFL postseason career. The Patriots have won all four.
‘If you would have told me before the game, I would not have believed it at all,” Blount said.
Blount sealed the win with a 73-yard breakaway early in the fourth quarter that put the Patriots up, 36-22. He was looking at the video board while Logan Mankins raised his right hand immediately in triumph as soon as Blount broke free in the secondary.
‘I didn’t look at the big screen until I got free,” Blount said. “I looked at it to see if anybody was close to catching me, and they weren’t, and the rest is history.’
Now, after making a stunning statement in his NFL playoff debut, Blount gets to play in his first conference championship, with a chance to advance to his first Super Bowl.
‘I’m loving it,” Blount said. “[To] come out here and get this win against a great Colts team, it just shows you how good our team can be. We’ve got to go back at film, we’ve probably made some mistakes, some things that we’ve got to correct, but for the most part, our offensive line had an amazing performance. In my eyes, they’re all Pro Bowlers.
‘I think this is the third year in a row that we’ve been there, and we’ve been getting right there knocking on the door and we haven’t knocked it down yet, so we’re going to go out there and put on the game film and find out who we’re going to play tomorrow and get to work on them.’
Blount actually set a new franchise playoff rushing record at 169 yards before losing three yards on a later carry. Blount had to settle for a tie with Martin with 166 yards rushing.
‘It means a lot,” Blount said. “I’m excited that they gave me the chance to carry the ball enough times to do that, but I’ve got to say hats off to the offensive line because on a couple of those runs, I didn’t get touched.
‘I’m really confident. Like I said, those guys in front of me, they don’t get tired. I ain’t going to get tired, and if we’re going to be able to continue running the football like that throughout the playoffs then I’ll be happy with it.
‘It says a lot about that offensive line. They couldn’t have put up a better performance. They’ve been doing this throughout the whole season, and I think Logan [Mankins] has been the only one that’s got the recognition, but it’s all of those [guys] up there that contain and do awesome and make those holes for me and Shane [Vereen] and [Stevan] Rid[ley] and Brandon [Bolden].’