The Buffalo Bills played a good first half against the New England Deflatriots keeping the score close, but in the second half the game got away from them which is pretty normal when they play Bill Belicheat and his gang of rule breakers.
On the first series, something amazing happened and I'm not talking about the fact that the Bills held the ball for over 7 minutes and moved it deep into Pats territory. Tyrod Taylor hurt his leg early in the game, but rather than burn a timeout Rick Dennison and Sean McDermott had the smarts to send in Joe Webb as the QB to rush up the middle for a one-yard first down. The miraculous part of this wasn't the first down, it was that for the first time this entire season, my hatred level for Dennison actually decreased from 100/100 to 95/100 although it would rise back up as the game progressed.
On this same drive, despite running the ball well, the Bills opted to throw on first and goal from the Pats six yard line. Tyrod Taylor clearly could not see Eric Lee, either because he is too short or because he is literally the blindest person in the world. Lee, who was signed by the Patriots off the Bills practice squad 10 days earlier, easily intercepted the pass causing the Bills to come up empty despite it being the longest drive the Patriots have allowed all year.
New England would convert that interception into three points. Before the end of the first quarter, Patriots quarterback and worlds biggest baby, Tom Brady screamed at his offensive coordinator, Josh McDaniels, who made a comment about a bad throw Brady made on the drive. Way to teach those kids how to act the right way Tom!
In the second quarter, Sean McDermott made a terrible challenge on a play. Brady fell back on his own and threw the ball incomplete. McDermott challenged hoping it would be ruled that a Bills player touched Brady and was therefore a sack, or that Brady's throw was considered intentional grounding. The only way this challenge would have made sense is if McDermott thought that Mante Teo's girlfriend sacked Brady and therefore he should be ruled down by contact from an imaginary person.
On the Patriots next drive, Dion Lewis had a big run deep into Bills territory. On the play, he stiff armed Jordan Poyer so badly that I cried a little inside on behalf of Poyer. Trusty vet Kyle Williams would sack Brady on a 3rd and goal from the 5 forcing another field goal making it 6 - 0 Patriots.
The Bills would return the favor by responding with three of their own after a few decent runs and a 49 yard field goal by Steven Hauschka. With just three minutes left in half, it felt pretty good to be within three of the Patriots even though Bills offense wasn't playing great. The Patriots did what they always do though and scored on both sides of half blowing open this game and never looking back. They notched a field goal before half making it 9 to 3.
6 beers – 2 before game
Ate 15 wings before game. (Too nervous to have appetite during it.)
Moderately frustrated/Moderately happy outlook
NE 9 – BUF 3
The second half was the Rob Gronkowski show. It started off with a nice performance on the field and ended up with a thuggish like WWE move on Tre'Davious White well after the play. On their first drive after half, the Patriots connected with Gronk for three catches before Rex Burkhead ran in for the score making it 16 to 3 Patriots. I could sense where the game was about to go and so I poured myself a Jack and Coke.
Gronkowski continued on the next drive catching a pass that was chucked up from Brady. On the play Gronkowski and Tre White each had a 50-50 shot with both of their hands on the ball but Gronk out-muscled White who is much smaller and secured the 30 yard catch. Rex Burkhead would once again play the finisher role, scoring on a 14 yard run to blow open the game 23 to 3 in favor of New England.
Early in the fourth quarter, Tyrod was pulled from the game due to his injury and in came Nathan Peterman. Peterman did some nice things but also made some stupid rookie throws. None of them were intercepted though and no matter how silly that sounds, it was important for him to play an entire quarter with no interceptions.
The last noteworthy event in this game happened when the Patriots had the ball at their own 36 with under 5 minutes remaining. Tre White intercepted a pass from Brady while covering Gronk. There were flags thrown on the play but well after it, while White was lying defenseless on the ground, Gronk acted like a goon throwing his 265 pound frame onto the back of White's head giving him a concussion. It was a cowardly move by Gronk which only got him a 1 game suspension which is complete nonsense.
The end of the game came shortly after. The Bills playoff chances were deflated by the Cheatriots victory. The path ahead for Buffalo remains difficult. With just four games remaining, the Bills need to win at least three and possibly four to make the playoffs.
3 Jack and Cokes
3 Bills QB’s taking snaps
1 dirty hit by Gronk on Tre White
NE 23 – BUF 3