New England Patriots defeat Cleveland Browns, 9-3

Halfway through the regular season, the time had come for the bruised and battered Patriots to finally catch a break.

They got it in the form of a Cleveland team whose preferred quarterback, Kelly Holcomb, has a broken right fibula -- a bleeding broken right fibula, actually -- so painful he could not start yesterday's game at Gillette Stadium, though he was pressed into action when starter Tim Couch sprained his right thumb near the end of the first half. A team withou...