How open was New England Patriots receiver Chris Hogan on his 63-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter Sunday? The nearest defender was 19.23 yards away, according to NFL Next Gen Stats, which is the most yards of separation on a touchdown pass over the last three seasons.
Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels unveiled a creative design with Rob Gronkowski coming in motion from left to right to give the look of a wham block and with Julian Edelman coming in motion from right to left on a fake end-around. Meanwhile, Rex Burkhead delivered a key block to keep Tom Brady clean. Brady stepped up to see a wide-open Hogan as three defenders gravitated to Josh Gordon in the middle of the field.
It was Brady's longest touchdown pass since a 64-yard TD to Brandin Cooks in Week 11 of last season against the Raiders, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
It was tied for the second-longest TD pass Brady has thrown against the Steelers. His longest was an 81-yarder to Aaron Dobson in Week 9 of 2013, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
On Tom Brady & Chris Hogan's 63-yard TD, Hogan had 19.2 yards of separation from the nearest defender at the time of catch, the most wide open a receiver has been on any pass of the last two seasons.#NEvsPIT #GoPats pic.twitter.com/hPphxHegfq— Next Gen Stats (@NextGenStats) December 16, 2018
Contributing: ESPN Patriots reporter Mike Reiss