Miami has been a house of horrors for the New England Patriots during the Brady/Belichick Era, one of the few places they seem to be off their game more than normal.
Yesterday was not one of those days.
The Patriots had a dominant defensive showing, coupled with an offense that didn’t need to even do a thing, yet still scored 4 touchdowns.
Tom Brady was 20 for 28 (71.4%), threw 264 passing yards and 2 TDs, and had a passer rating of 124.7 (his second game this season with a rating above 120); oh, and he also ran for a touchdown.
New Patriot Antonio Brown caught 4 passes for 56 yards and a TD, and also had one rush for 5 yards.
It was a better day for Sony Michel, who had 21 carries for 85 yards and a TD.
In a balanced receiving attack, no player caught more than 4 passes.
Miami had an abysmal day on offense, thanks to a huge showing from the Patriots defense.
They only were able to gain 11 first downs (most in the 4th quarter) and 184 total yards.
Ryan Fitzpatrick was 11 for 21 with 89 passing yards on the day, and threw three interceptions, 2 of which were returned for touchdowns (Stephon Gilmore and Jamie Collins were the victors of these scores).
Josh Rosen was finally brought in to replace FitzMagic in the 4th quarter after Fitzy’s second INT was returned for a score.
He put a little life into Miami, but it was way too late. He also contributed to the INT party, throwing one on the last play of the game to Jamie Collins (his second of the day).
The Patriots sacked Miami’s QBs a total of 7 times yesterday, led by Adam Butler with 2, and Chase Winovich with 1.5; Jamie Collins, Michael Bennett, John Simon and Danny Shelton recorded sacks as well.
The offense will be a work in progress as the team learns how to implement Antonio Brown into the offense (assuming he stays on the field), and attempts to survive the health of their offensive line. After not having Marcus Cannon today due to an injury he suffered last week, left tackle Isaiah Wynn left yesterday’s game early as well, leading to newcomers being thrown into the fire.
But the defense… the defense has only allowed 3 points this season, and dating back to last season, during the first half of their past 7 games, they have allowed a total of 10 points; this is the foundation of the team at this time, and have shown no signs of that changing anytime soon.
Stephen Gostkowski did not have a good day, missing a total of 3 kicks (one FG, two XPs), but hopefully this was just a bad day in Miami.
Since 2016, Gostkowski has missed a total of 27 kicks (FGs and XPs) out of 314 attempts (8.6%), but 6 of those misses (22%) took place in Miami.
Overall, there just is not a lot to be concerned about if your a Patriots fan.
Next week, New England faces the New York Jets at home, a team without their starting QB, who is battling… mono.
A backup QB on the road in New England for a team that has not won a game at Gillette Stadium since the 2010 playoffs (for the regular season you have to go back to 2008)… you tell me what’s gonna happen.
After hosting the Jets, the Patriots head to Buffalo and Washington, and then have a Thursday night game against the Giants (at home).
To paraphrase Milhouse Van Houten: Everything’s coming up New England!
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