New England's offense looks just fine, especially with Wes Welker back at receiver. The Falcons' defense appears to need more work.
Tom Brady threw for a touchdown, Fred Taylor ran for a score and the Patriots cruised to a 28-10 victory Thursday in an exhibition game in Atlanta.
Welker, who had 346 catches over the last three years, played for the first time since tearing up his left knee in January during the regular-season finale. Brady got him involved right away, completing passes of 6 and 14 yards on the second and third plays against the Falcons (1-1).
New England (2-0) scored on two of its three possessions with the first-team offense. Taylor had a 28-yard run, and Brady passed 4 yards to Aaron Hernandez for a touchdown.
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Atlanta has plenty of weapons on offense, but upgrading the defense is considered the key to challenging Super Bowl champion New Orleans in the NFC South.
It wasn’t exactly a fair test. Cornerback Dunta Robinson, the team’s big free-agent acquisition, missed his second straight game with an ailing hamstring. Two other potential starters, cornerback Brian Wilson and tackle Peria Jerry, also sat out.
Bills 34, Colts 21: It took four plays for rookie first-round draft pick C.J. Spiller to begin delivering on his dynamic billing, as the running back sparked Buffalo to an exhibition win over Indianapolis.
Starting in place of injured veterans Fred Jackson and Marshawn Lynch, Spiller opened the scoring on a powerful 31-yard run 3 minutes in. Drafted ninth overall out of Clemson, Spiller finished with 10 carries for 54 yards.
The Bills offense followed suit. Shaking off an inconsistent debut in last week’s 42-17 loss at Washington, quarterback Trent Edwards produced two scoring drives in five series, including a 70-yard touchdown pass to Lee Evans to put Buffalo up 21-14. Furthering his bid to reclaim the starting job he lost midway through last season, Edwards went 5 for 8 for 93 yards and the Bills (1-1) never trailed.
Peyton Manning and the high-powered Colts (0-2) scored two touchdowns in a wide-open first half in the fourth installment of Buffalo’s five-year, eight-game series in Toronto.