The New England Patriots remain at the top of the AFC. In the division duel at the Buffalo Bills, Head Coach Bill Belichick’s team wins along – also thanks to Jakob Johnson. Mac Jones throws the ball only once.
Buffalo – The New England Patriots have maintained first place in the AFC. Head coach Bill Belichick’s men won 14-10 at the Buffalo Bills to close out Game 13.
In a strong wind at Orchard Park, the Patriots relied on their strong running game almost throughout. Thanks to blocking machine Jakob Johnson – whom the US commentators praised several times – and six O-linemen on more than 50 percent of the snaps, New England recorded 229 yards on the ground on 44 attempts.
Highlight: Damien Harris’ 64-yard touchdown run in the first quarter – the longest by a Patriots player since Curtis Martin in 1997 (70). Harris totalled 111 rushing yards and formed a powerful backfield duo with fellow running back Rhamondre Stevenson (78 yards).
Patriots quarterback Jones throws only three passes
Patriots quarterback Mac Jones threw just three passes, two of which arrived for 19 yards. Since 1974, no NFL team had so few pass attempts in a win at the end.
The Bills’ offense was a little more variable – 25 runs for 99 yards and 30 passes from Josh Allen, 15 of which found teammates for 145 yards and a touchdown – but also more flawed.
In the last quarter alone, Buffalo visited New England’s redzone twice, but made life difficult for themselves through penalties and inaccuracies – and remained without points. A missed field goal by Tyler Bass from 33 yards didn’t help either.
The win – their seventh in a row – extends the Patriots’ (9-4) lead in the AFC East over the Buffalo Bills (7-5). Next week, Jones and Co. will (finally) have their bye week. Buffalo – now only seventh in the AFC playoff picture – travels to Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay on Game Day 14.