Patriots offense is sluggish but still gets the job done
Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
That game was ugly. There's no sugarcoating it. The Patriots played pretty well defensively, epitomizing Bill Belicheck's "Bend, Don't Break" signature and kept the Jets kicking field goals for the most part (3 FG's, 1 TD). The offense looked pretty sluggish, though. I think most of us expected the Jets to give us all we could handle early on, but I thought something would give eventually and Tom Brady would take over in the 2nd half. The offense did play slightly better in the 2nd half, putting up 10 points in the 2nd half, but it wasn't the onslaught that we saw last week against Miami.
Credit the Jets, though. They gave us all we could handle, sacking Brady 4 times and picking him off once, as well as limiting Brady to 182 yards and a touchdown in 35 pass attempts. They also kept Rob Gronkowski to 31 yards and the lone passing TD from Brady in the 1st quarter. The running game was limited to 85 yards and the killer touchdown from Jonas Gray (5 yards on 6 carries) in the 4th quarter. The Pats offense was sluggish, but it was due more to the Jets playing hard for their head coach, who could be on his way out.
In the end, though, they did enough to get the win, and that's what matters. With the win, the Patriots have officially clinched a first round bye. They could also clinch the #1 seed and home field advantage with a Denver Broncos loss tomorrow on Monday Night Football against the Cincinnati Bengals. Of course, they'll get the #1 seed if they win against Buffalo next week since they own the tiebreaker, but it would be a lot sweeter if the Broncos lose.