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New England Patriots > Patriots Blog > 2021 Patriots Season

15 Observations from Victory over the Buffalo Bills

Mark Morse
Mark Morse on Twitter
1 month ago at 8:57 am ET
Posted Under: 2021 Patriots Season

15 Observations from Victory over the Buffalo BillsDec 6, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; New England Patriots outside linebacker Matt Judon (9) celebrates while leaving the field following the game against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

This game was everything we thought it would be due to the horrible wind conditions. The Patriots needed to establish dominance on the line of scrimmage. They did that on both sides. I wrote in my preview that whoever could impose their will on the line would win the game.

Here are some observations from last night:

1. It started with the Offensive Line dominating the Bills’ defense. The Bills knew the Patriots wanted to run and they couldn’t stop them. The Patriots ran 46 times for 222 yards. The big blow was the 64 yard TD run by Damien Harris. That play was like Moses parting the Red Sea. The cutback hole was so wide you could drive a truck through that hole. Trent Brown continued to block the backside preventing any Bills to get back. Jakob Johnson had a great block as well. This was against a 10 man front. The Bills never picked up the Patriots tell that when N’Keal Harry is in the slot, he is down blocking!
2. Damien Harris 10 carries for 111 yards (11.1 YPC) and Rhamondre Stevenson had 24 carries for 79yards and a 3.25 YPC. Harris had a 5.2 YPC outside of the big 64 yard TD.
3. Mac Jones passed only 3 times! He ran 5 times. Jonnu Smith made a spectacular catch for 12 yards. Ten straight runs to start the game and 2 three and outs. They had 33 straight runs after the Smith completion.
4. Why was N’Keal Harry back as a punt returner. At that point in the game, the Patriots had done everything right, big run for a TD, running to set up an FG, and solid Defense when Buffalo had the wind in the 1st quarter. I went spastic after the Harry muff. Why did the coaching staff put him in that position? I was so pissed. The Pats did everything right and had taken the wind advantage away from Buffalo only to have this gift play for 7 points.
5. Gutsy call for the two-point play. That had Buffalo playing from behind the whole game.
6. I thought the McDaniels play calling was very conservative, playing not to make a mistake. I wished he had let Jones pass more often on 1st down. The conditions dictated what the Patriots were able to do.
7. Pass defense held Josh Allen to 99 yards and 15 completions on 30 attempts. Allen has the arm strength to pass through the wind. Allen also led the Bills in rushing with 39 yards on 6 carries. I thought Allen should have been utilized more in the run game.
8. Matt Judon had a pass rush where he went too far upfield and lost containment on Allen. The play resulted in a big run by Allen and put them in a position to win the game.
9. Penalty call against Myles Bryant was terrible. That was a free three-point gift from the officials. Allen was stretching for the 1st down.
10. The final play of the game was a terrific play by Myles Bryant. He was covering Cole Beasley across the middle. He was spying on Allen and broke off his man to deflect the pass.
11. Davon Godchaux had a heck of a game. The announcers were constantly calling his name. He ended up with 10 tackles.
12. The Patriots missed Kyle Dugger. Strange play with Adrian Phillips getting hurt after the pass breakup and just standing around during the TV Timeout.
13. Did you notice that Practice Squad call-up Sean Davis was out there in crunch time. That was before the Phillips injury. Also fellow Practice Squad call-up Daniel Ekuale had a sack and another tackle.
14. Nick Folk has been unbelievable all year, but kicking in these conditions he was still perfect. That 41 yarder was great.
15. Sean McDermott looks like an idiot. The challenge of the Mac Jones 1st down was stupid. McDermott was constantly barking at the officials.  He also got outcoached by Bill Belichick again.


Posted Under: 2021 Patriots Season


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