New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, center, appeals to side judge Adrian Hill, left, Sunday during the second half of an NFL football game against the Minnesota Vikings in Foxborough, Massachusetts.
But the Patriots bounced back, needing just four plays for Brady to cap a 75-yard drive with a 24-yard touchdown pass to Josh Gordon that put the Patriots back in front 17-10. After the Vikings Latavius Murray picked up the first down, New England's Patrick Chung went down as if he was injured.
Thielen could be seen yelling in the direction of the Patriots bench "that's bullcrap" after he made a decision to challenge the play. It appeared Belichick told the Vikings player to, "Shut the f-k up".
The call on the field was upheld, so Belichick ended up losing his challenge. Alright, give up 10 points on defense, turn the ball over, move the ball on offense, we played the game the way we wanted to play it, and we got the results we wanted. "I wasn't directing it towards (Belichick)", Thielen continued.
Belichick's only comment on the interaction was when he was asked whether the interaction was just a couple of guys exchanging holiday greetings. It's not cheating, because there's no rule against from a guy going down. "So for me, I just lost my emotions". "I let the emotions get the best of me", Thielen said.
"Um, yeah, obviously I gotta keep my cool", Thielen said.
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"I just thought the play was cheap", Thielen said in the Gillette Stadium visitors' locker room.
Never considered much of a mobile quarterback, it took Brady 19 years and 265 games to reach the 1,000-yard milestone - the most by a player since the merger.
With a nice balance of running and passing the ball on offense along with dominating defensive play, the Patriots extended their record to 9-3 with a statement win that could just carry them through the rest of December and into the playoffs.
"He jumped in Thielen's face", McCourty said. "I can't lose it like that". "I don't want us to go backwards anymore". "I'm gonna try to go out and do my best, and I'm gonna try to compete every play". He did score the Vikings' lone touchdown, but the Patriots' defense clearly put an emphasis on limiting the unsafe receiver on this day. Thielen entered the game averaging 8.5 receptions and 103.5 receiving yards per game, but he was only able to catch five passes for 28 yards against the Patriots.
Kirk Cousins finished 32 of 44 for 201 yards and touchdown for Minnesota, but had two late interceptions.
"Yeah, pretty much", he told reporters.