By Matt Dolloff, CBS Boston

BOSTON (CBS) — In one of the only years during the Brady-Belichick era that the Patriots felt far away from Super Bowl favorites, the 2005 season ended prematurely and in disappointing fashion when the Denver Broncos beat the Pats 27-13 ten years ago today. Despite the loss, former Patriots tight end Ben Watson made a memorable play that would have become legendary if the Patriots prevailed that day.

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Late in the third quarter with the Patriots only down 10-6, Tom Brady made one of the more ill-advised throws of his career when he went for Troy Brown in the end zone. Brown was well-covered by future Hall-of-Fame corner Champ Bailey, who intercepted the pass and ran it back 100 yards.

But preventing what looked like a sure pick-six, Watson came out of nowhere from all the way at the other end of the field to force a Bailey fumble and knock the ball out of bounds. The play only delayed a touchdown – Mike Anderson punched it in on the very next play – but at the time, Watson made an amazing play and could have caused a seismic shift in momentum if the Patriots somehow held the Broncos out of the end zone on that possession.

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If the Patriots went on to win that game and the Super Bowl that season, Watson’s tackle would be iconic. It would be right up there with Dave Roberts’ stolen base in the 2004 ALCS as one of the best “turning point” kind of plays in Boston sports history.

But alas, the 2005 season ended in disappointment, as did the next eight before Brady & Belichick finally finished the job last year. It’s still worth highlighting Watson’s memorable, would-be legendary play.

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Matt Dolloff is a writer for His opinions do not necessarily reflect that of CBS or 98.5 The Sports Hub. Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff and email him at