Belichick 20/20: 2001 Divisional Playoff Win Over Oakland


For this installment of Belichick 20/20 we revisit the infamous 2001 "Tuck Rule" game. Belichick's 12-4 Patriots, led by a 25 year-old sixth round draft pick named Tom Brady would square off against Jon Gruden's 11-5 Oakland Raiders. The snowfall would halt both offenses as the Patriots would trail the Raiders 7-0 at halftime with a combined 238 total net yards from both teams. Belichick and the Patriots would come out hot to start the third quarter, going 62 yards on their first possession of the half, ending in a field goal; the Patriots would net only 21 yards for the remainder of the quarter. However, the Patriots would score 10 unanswered points in the fourth quarter, including a six-yard touchdown rush by Brady which was emphasized by his now signature spike. Then, with the Patriots trailing by 3 with two-minutes to go, Brady would be sacked by college teammate, Charles Woodson, with the initial call being a fumble and recovered by the Raiders. But, the call would be reviewed and reversed saying that Brady's arm was going forward on the play, with the call being reversed as an incomplete pass. The Patriots would take advantage of the call, hitting a field-goal to tie the game at 13 and head into overtime. The Patriots would receive to start overtime and go 61 yards on 15 plays, ending with an iconic 23-yard field-goal from Adam Vinatieri which would send the Patriots to the AFC Championship game.