At New England
1:00 p.m. ET
• Buffalo Bills head coach Sean McDermott had his team ready to play, but his squad simply is too young and inexperienced to win a game like this. Nevertheless, the bills fought very hard, and McDermott had a very good defensive game plan installed that completely shut down the Patriots passing game. This game was a much closer contest than the score indicated, and that is because McDermott is building a very competitive squad.
• The Patriots defense played an excellent game, but it was not facing an elite offensive unit. They did, however, do a very good job of keeping Bills quarterback Josh Allen in the pocket for much of the day. This kind of disciplined performance will be helpful to the Patriots if they face a mobile quarterback such as Baltimore’s Lamar Jackson or Houston’s DeShaun Watson in the playoffs.
• The Patriots offense clearly is in a funk, and that is due to two Reasons. First, it is a unit that lacks explosive playmakers. Opposing defenses no longer have to honor any deep threat, and they can now crowd the middle of the field and limit quarterback Tom Brady’s options. Second, it is a unit that is committing far too many penalties. Wide receiver Julian Edelman has committed too many penalties now over several games, and the offensive line continues to struggle with penalties and pass protection.
• New England’s offense also continues to struggle in the red zone. The play calling in the red zone this entire year has been somewhat puzzling. There simply hasn’t been any aggressiveness toward attacking the end zone. To us, this is a clear indication that the Patriots admit they simply don’t have the playmakers on this year’s roster.
• Patriots head coach Bill Belichick arguably is the greatest head coach in the history of the modern NFL. However, we feel he would be the first to admit when his team did not play a very efficient game, and that the responsibility for that falls on the coaching staff. In this game, we felt that if Bills head coach Sean McDermott had more veteran players available to him, he may have won this game.