Sep 30, 2013 at 1.30am UK at ​Georgia Dome
New England Patriots
30-23
Atlanta Falcons
FT
0
Q1
3
Mulligan (12:36)
10
Q2
7
Gonzalez (0:38)
3
Q3
0
Blount (14:26), Thompkins (9:43)
17
Q4
13
Gonzalez (4:22)

Result: New England Patriots hold off Atlanta Falcons

New England Patriots' Tom Brady in action on August 16, 2013
© Getty Images
The New England Patriots hold off a late surge from the Atlanta Falcons to move to 4-0 in their season with a victory at the Georgia Dome.

The New England Patriots have advanced to 4-0 in their season by winning an entertaining clash with the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome.

The home side started brightly and moved downfield with quarterback Matt Ryan driving them inside the Patriots' five. However, they were forced to settle for a field goal from Matt Bryant.

New England responded as they ran the ball at the Falcons' defense and had great success before they took the lead through a Tom Brady touchdown pass to tight end Matthew Mulligan on play-action.

The Patriots extended their advantage through a Stephen Gostkowski field goal as he drilled the ball over the posts from 48 yards.

However, the Falcons hit back with 38 seconds left in the half when Ryan found tight end Tony Gonzalez in the flat and he powered over Steve Gregory to reach the end zone for a 21-yard touchdown to tie the scores.

Gostkowski restored the Patriots' lead in the third quarter before LaGarrette Blount put Bill Belichick's team 10 points ahead with a 49-yard run for a touchdown.

The Falcons responded with a field goal from Bryant from 45 yards, but the Patriots went further ahead when Brady hit receiver Kenbrell Thompkins on a fade route for a 18-yard touchdown.

Ryan then threw an interception to Aqib Talib, allowing Gostkowski to kick the visitors 17 points ahead to leave the score at 30-13.

However, the Falcons mounted a comeback as Ryan quickly moved them downfield and was able to hit Gonzalez on a corner route in the end zone to bring his side within 10 points.

Mike Smith called his side for an onside kick to earn possession back and Patriots' tight end Zach Sudfeld fumbled the ball, presenting the hosts with a way back into the game.

The Patriots' defense did not allow the Falcons into the end zone and forced them into another field goal, which Bryant nailed through the posts from 22 yards.

It wasn't over then as Brady's offense looked to kill the clock but they couldn't find the elusive first down due to a poor spot of the ball, leaving the visitors to go for it on fourth down, which they failed and gave Ryan one last chance.

However, Ryan could not deliver the crucial strike as he tried to find Roddy White in the end zone for a touchdown but Talib was there again to knock the ball away to win the game for his side.

Falcons TE Tony Gonzalez celebrates a touchdown against San Francisco on January 20, 2013
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