The Dec. 6 MNF game between the Buffalo Bills and New England patriots was anything but ordinary. A temperature of 23-degrees, average winds of 25-29 MPH, and occasional gusts of 40-55 MPH winds added an extreme challenge to an already important game.
If New England walked away with a loss, they would have lost the #1 seed in the entire AFC, and would have also opened the door for Buffalo to reclaim the AFC East. However, an unorthodox game plan shot New England two wins above the Bills while also keeping control of the AFC, and AFC East.
This game plan consisted of 44 non-kneel-down runs and just three passing attempts for rookie QB Mac Jones. Mac jones completed 2/3 passes for 19-yards which totaled a QBR of 84%.
In a game against the No. 1 ranked defense in the NFL, the Patriots O-line and Running Back core deserve all of the credit for a huge division win. On 44 separate carries that totales 230 yards and averaged 5.2 yards per attempt, Rhamondre Stevenson had 78-yards on 24 carries, Damien Harris had 111-yards on 10 carries including a 64-yard TD run that came on 3rd-and-5, and Brandon Bolden has 28-yards on 4 carries including a 2-point conversion after New England’s only touchdown.
Patriots HC Bill Belichik was unable to hide his happiness after Monday’s win as well. While on the Greg Hill Show on WEEI Tuesday morning, Belichick was asked, “if anything from Monday night’s game can help the Pats to prepare for the rematch against the Bills in Week 16?” Belichick answered: “We can use our whole passing game. All the pass plays that we have they haven’t seen.”
Ironically, the New England Patriots became the first team to win a game with three or fewer pass attempts since 1974. The last team to accomplish this feat? The Buffalo Bills in a 16-12 win over the New York Jets.
The New England patriots go into their BYE week on top of the AFC and AFC East, with a record of 9-4 after winning seven straight games.