Greetings and salutations from Gillette Stadium, an edifice that rises oddly out of the part-suburban/part-rural (and I guess that makes it sub-rural) southern Massachusetts landscape, its 21st-century accoutrements clashing with the colonial-style home architecture and rustic milieu of what is otherwise a typically genteel New England hamlet.
It is an odd contrast. Norman Rockwell meets We Will Rock You, I reckon. But it is home for the Patriots, and with two championships and four winning seasons in their first quartet of seasons here, it is indeed a glorious home for them.
Tonight, the field is decorated with logos that read “China Bowl,” celebrating the Patriots’ upcoming summertime trip to Beijing to play the Seattle Seahawks next summer.
Now, when I hear “China Bowl,” I think of a piece of Mom’s dinnerware filled with Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, or — perhaps more appropriately — sweet-and-sour sauce. It will come to mean something far different next summer after the teams duel at Workers Stadium on a Wednesday night next year.
But that’s a preseason game 10 and a half months away. What’s at hand tonight is a crucial early-season game between teams that have combined to win five of the last nine Super Bowls. Each has made three straight postseason appearances; each has been to the playoffs seven times in the last decade.
Inactives and more to come.
Tags: New England Patriots