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Redskins have no answer for Vrabel

10/29/2007

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Fittingly, Patriots linebacker Mike Vrabel was unstoppable when the media tried to stop him after Sunday's 52-7 victory over the Redskins. Heaven knows the Redskins couldn't do anything with him.

Vrabel had three sacks and forced three fumbles. He had 11 tackles and two assists. For the 10th time in his career, he caught a touchdown pass in a goal-line situation.

"I've got a lot to say about Vrabel," Patriots defensive end Richard Seymour said. "He's just a guy who comes to work and puts his hard hat on. You put him anywhere, and he'll just go out and play. He's out there like a coach on the field. We always joke at the end of the game, [and] he says, 'At the end of the game, we'll hand them back their playbook.'"

Vrabel really handed it to Redskins QB Jason Campbell. He stripped him of the football on three sacks. One was picked up by linebacker Rosevelt Colvin, who ran it back 11 yards for a touchdown. Two fumbles were recovered by defensive end Ty Warren.

"I can't remember when," Warren said in trying to recall a game like Sunday's. "I know I had a lot of one-fumble recoveries, but two … wow. It was like I was out there Easter egg hunting or picking up a golden egg. You just have to continue to play, and sometimes the ball might literally bounce in your direction."

What few can believe is how Vrabel keeps doing it on offense. Brady is 10-for-10 in his career throwing to him as a tackle eligible. On a 2-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter, no one covered Vrabel.

"Mike was pretty open," Brady said. "I think it was a good sell job by the offensive line. He just slipped out there, and another touchdown catch for him. I just try to throw to the guys who are open."

After the game, Vrabel wanted to see his kids. The media looked like the Redskins in trying to stop him. They couldn't.

John Clayton, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame writers' wing, is a senior writer for ESPN.com.