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2017 Patriots: Twas the night before Christmas

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through Gillette

Not a creature was stirring, not a Microsoft tablet.

The stockings all hung by the chimney with care,

coach Belichick hoped home field advantage soon would be their’s.

The Patriots were nestled all snug in their beds,

while visions of Super Bowls danced in their heads.

And Bill in his hoodie and Tom is his cap,

had just settled in for a long winter’s nap.

When out on the Twitter, there arose such a clatter,

I sprang to my phone to see what was the matter.

Where at wide receiver we needed a fit,

Ian Rapaport tweets, the Pats signed Kenny Britt.

With the Bills on the schedule and some chances of snow,

it is almost assured the Bills Mafia will stay in Buffalo.

Suddenly a game that’s traditionally elementary,

could give Buffalo their first playoff game of the century.

With Dion Lewis running, so lively and fleet,

I knew in a moment the offense complete.

More rapid than the Jets, more fierce than the Bills,

Sunday is a must win for both teams, a battle of wills.

“Now, Gronkowski! now, Lewis! now, Dola and Cooks!

On, screens! On, seams! Run outs and button hooks!

To the top of the light house! To defend the wall!

Now smash away! Smash away! Smash away all!”

When rains hit the Steel City like the wild hurricane glide,

with first place and home field to win for our side.

With Bell, Ben and Brown healthy, we knew not what to do,

add in a half time deficit and our consternation did grew.

And then, on an inkling, I heard on the Heinz Field roof,

the dancing and spiking of each giant hoof.

As I drew in my head, and turned toward the sound,

released from suspension, Gronkowski came with a bound.

He was dressed for battle, in the muds and the rains,

and his clothes were all tarnished with paint and grass stains.

A gigantic 87 across the width of his back,

and he looked like Goliath taking a different tact.

His eyes-how they twinkled! His dimples how merry!

His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!

His grin was now gone, replace by a scowl.

With each ferocious block, unleashed a primal howl.

The stump of a mouth guard held tight in his teeth,

dark as coal like the eye black it’s beneath.

Offensive player of the week, 148 yards and 9 snatches.

In the end Pittsburgh knew that they had met their matches.

He is not chubby and plump, but a giant Buddy the Elf,

And he laughed at Sean Davis, in spite of himself!

The Terrible Towels no longer twirled, nor flew,

Now hung futile and limp as the Pats went for two.

The last second win in Pittsburgh, surely tested their mettle,

but the challenge continues Sunday, Buffalo has a score to settle.

Two wins in Foxboro, and the advantage of home.

The Patriots hope their next road game is at the new Metrodome.

On Christmas eve, avoid penalties and hits after the whistle,

and go into the playoffs with the ferocity of a missile.

Beat two division rivals and put first place out of sight,

A Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Sterling Pingree is a co-host of The Drive, weekdays 4pm to 6pm on 92.9fm The Ticket.

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