In the end it all came down to the Patriots' defense.
Aqib Talib broke up a fourth down pass to Roddy White in end zone with less than a minute remaining as the Patriots held on to beat the Atlanta Falcons 30-23.
Matt Bryant nailed a 25-yard field goal to help the Falcons pull within seven.
Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez caught his second touchdown pass of the night an 11-yard lob from Matt Ryan as Atlanta pulled within 10 points with a little more than four minutes remaining.
The Patriots had extended their lead to 17 points on a 49-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski capitalizing on Aqib Talib's interception of the Falcons quarterback .
Earlier rookie wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins made up for a dropped pass with an 18-yard touchdown grab.
Atlanta's Matt Bryant made his second field goal of the game just a few minutes prior connecting from 45 yards out.
LeGarrette Blount raced away for a 47-yard touchdown at the top of the fourth quarter.
Gostkowski nailed a 22-yard ...