*This article is part of a weekly Throwback Thursday Series that will feature key stat lines and short recaps of the last time the New England Patriots played their upcoming opponent.
Last Time Out…
The New England Patriots and the Buffalo Bills last met just three weeks ago in a Dec. 3 matchup that resulted in a 23-3 Patriot win.
But the game didn’t go without any drama.
Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor was carted off the sideline early in the fourth quarter after going down with a knee injury.
After Bills Tre’Davious White intercepted Tom Brady with 4:50 left in the game, Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski took his frustrations out and made a late hit on the Bills’ rookie first-round pick. Gronk was suspended for the next game, which resulted in a 27-20 loss to the Miami Dolphins.
After the late hit, Bills safety Micah Hyde and Patriots receiver Danny Amendola were in a shoving match, while Bills defensive end Jerry Hughes got flagged while making contact with an official. Gronk, Hyde and Dola were all flagged for unnecessary roughness.
Let’s hope Sunday doesn’t bring about as much drama.
The Patriots points in the game came from Rex Burkhead and Stephen Gostkowski. Burkhead scored on one and 14-yard runs on the Patriots first two drives of the second half. Gostkowski was perfect on the day, hitting three field goals and two extra points.
The Patriots won their 14th consecutive road game, which was the second-longest streak in NFL history. New England would see that streak broken in a very subpar performance against Miami the next week.
The Patriots improved to 30-5 versus Buffalo since 2000.
The Buffalo Bills had three quarterbacks enter the game at some point. Tyrod Taylor went down early in the fourth quarter, after going 9-of-18 with 65 yards and one interception. Nathan Peterman took over and went 6-of-15 for 50 yards. The Bills even used third-string quarterback Joe Webb in some wildcat formations. He went 0-for-1 passing but added three carries for 27 yards for Buffalo.
New England’s rushing efforts were led by Dion Lewis who carried the ball 15 times for 92 yards. Rex Burkhead added 12 rushes for 78 yards and two scores.
LeSean McCoy carried the ball 15 times for 93 yards for Buffalo.
Rob Gronkowski had a major day in front of his hometown friends and family. The tight end caught nine passes for 147 yards and a long of 30. Danny Amendola added two catches for 34 yards.
The Bills’ receiving efforts were widespread this game. Zay Jones, Deonte Thompson and Charles Clay added 22, 21 and 20 yards respectively.
Malcolm Butler led the way for the Patriots’ defense with eight total tackles, including seven solo. Malcom Brown and Kyle Van Noy added a half sack each, while David Harris and Eric Lee added 1.5 sacks each as well.
Micah Hyde recorded 12 total tackles and 10 solo to lead the way for the Bills. Adolphus Washington, Kyle Williams and Shaq Lawson each posted a sack each.
Eric Lee posted an interception for New England, while Tre’Davious White added one for Buffalo.
Stephen Gostkowski was three-for-three on field goals with a long of 50, while Stephen Hauschka was one-of-one at 49 yards.
New England will face off against Buffalo in a home-field matchup on Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017. Game time is set for 1pm ET at Gillette Stadium.