|Tom Brady on D&C explains his exchange with Julian Edelman||11.12.12 at 7:58 am ET|
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, making his weekly appearance on Dennis & Callahan, said Monday morning the 6-3 Pats know they have to improve in order to accomplish their ultimate goal.
“I don’t think we’re ever satisfied where we’re at, and nor should we be. We’ve played nine games,” Brady said. “We were sitting here at 1-2 a while ago thinking we really needed to get better and we’ve won five of our last six. There’s no question we did plenty of good things yesterday, we did some things that weren’t so good. We’ve got to get back to work this week and get back on it because it doesn’t get easier.”
The Pats, clinging to a 37-31 lead in the final minute of the game, appeared to have let the game slip away when the Bills marched down the field and into the red zone on their final drive of the game. The Pats were saved when Devin McCourty intercepted a Ryan Fitzpatrick pass in the end zone.
“I always think we’re going to find a way to pull it out. I’ve thought that since the day I got here,” Brady said of the defense. “I practice against those guys in practice daily, and they’ve come up with a lot of big plays at the end. They did it against the Jets this year, they did this time — twice in the Jets game, at the end of the fourth quarter and overtime. I have a lot of confidence they’re going to be able to shut the other team down when they need to.”
Brady was seen giving receiver Julian Edelman an earful after the Pats had to punt on their opening drive of the third quarter. Brady said that his issue with Edelman had nothing to do with him being sacked on third down, but that it was simply about being on the same page. Read the rest of this entry »
|Chan Gailey had no doubt Bills ‘were going to score and win the ballgame’||11.11.12 at 9:03 pm ET|
FOXBORO — For the first time in a long time, it appeared the Bills had the Patriots right where they wanted them heading into the final minute of a game at Gillette Stadium.
The Patriots held a 37-31 advantage with just under a minute to play when the Bills took over control and began to march the ball into New England territory.
The drive began with just over two minutes to play at the Bills’ 20 yard-line. Big gains to Steve Johnson and Donald Jones brought the Bills to the Patriots’ 44 yard-line, but two injury timeouts left Buffalo with none remaining.
As running back C.J. Spiller hauled in a dump off pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick, took it 14 yards and ran out of bounds, it seemed like the Bills would steal one away from the Patriots for the first time at Gillette Stadium. All they needed was a touchdown.
“I had every idea we were going to score and win the ballgame by one,” Bills head coach Chan Gailey said after the game. “I mean, that was my total thought. I just knew we were going to do that.”
But that thought was spoiled on a miscommunication between Fitzpatrick and rookie receiver T.J. Graham, as Fitzpatrick was intercepted in the end zone by Devin McCourty with 23 seconds remaining in the game. A Patriots kneel down was all it took to rip the hearts from Bills.
Gailey said that Graham breaks the rout depending on the look the defense gives him. He chose to try and sneak behind McCourty, while Fitzpatrick threw for a rout across his face. Gailey said he’ll have to go back and look at the tape for more analysis.
With the win, the Patriots not only kept an unblemished record at Gillette Stadium against the Bills (now 11-0), but they also completed the 22nd sweep of the AFC East foe all-time in a series that began in 1960.
The Patriots have won 64 times over the Bills in history, which is the highest win total against any single opponent. And Tom Brady now has 20 regular season victories over the Bills – his most against any team in his career. Read the rest of this entry »
FOXBORO — When all was said and done at Gillette Stadium, the Patriots narrowly escaped the Bills with a win, thanks in large part to a penalty-ridden Buffalo team Sunday. The Bills racked up 14 total penalties for a total of 148 yards and still managed to gain 481 yards of offense, including 162 on the ground against the league’s eighth-best rush defense.
On the first offensive series alone for the Bills, a third-and-1 situation turned into a third-and-26 after three consecutive flags were thrown – two for a false start and one for holding. It was certainly an indication of the way things would turn out.
After the game, Bills wide receiver Steve Johnson said that some of the defensive pass interference calls against his team were “bogus,” because the same calls could have gone both ways yet it seemed like the yellow laundry didn’t fly as much for the home team.
“We’d go down and have a fade rout, and the guy’s, he’s holding me too,” Johnson said. “I’m not saying that his was a pass interference either, but if you called it on Stephon [Gilmore], you have to call it on their defensive player also.
“It’s something that we’ve got to fix as far as offsides go. We’ve got to fix that on our own. But some of the calls were pretty weak, and some of it was football.”
Gilmore said afterwards that he didn’t know what else he could do to try and defend the throw, and tried to explain the pass interference call on him.
“I don’t know what happened. I don’t know what else I can do,” Gilmore said. “On the first penalty, he ran into me, and the ball bounced off of him. On the second penalty I was running with him and he tripped on my feet, and they threw the penalty on me.”
There is no timely penalty in the NFL, but for the Bills it seemed that some of the flags thrown came at points during the game when the Patriots struggled to get offensive production. Safety George Wilson said that ultimately it came down to the fact that they put themselves in a tough position to win based on their foul trouble.
“They started calling the game real closely on their own,” Wilson said. “[The Patriots] weren’t moving the ball with offensive production. It wasn’t anything they were doing to us; we just have to be smarter and not put ourselves in that position.”
FOXBORO — Chris Price and Mike Petraglia break down the Patriots’ 37-31 win over the Bills Sunday at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots allowed a franchise record 35 first downs and 481 yards to the Bills and needed a Devin McCourty interception in the end zone to preserve the win that improved the team to 6-3, two games ahead of the Dolphins in the AFC East.
FOXBORO — The Patriots held C.J. Spiller to just 33 yards on eight carries on Sept. 30 in Western New York, a big reason why the Patriots were able to hold the Bills scoreless during a 38-0 run that helped them cruise to a 52-28 win.
Before those two games, Spiller had games of 169 and 123 yards against the Jets and Chiefs before getting injured in Week 3 against the Browns. He is averaging over seven yards a carry and has 24 catches out of the backfield at nearly 10 yards a clip.
He is the perfect complement to Fred Jackson and Tashard Choice. And the Patriots know that sweeping the season series starts with repeating their Week 4 effort when they held the Bills under 100 yards rushing and allowed a manageable 3.6 yards per carry.
“Obviously, they’re a two-headed monster, really a three-headed monster,” Jerod Mayo said this week. “Choice provides a spark off the bench as well. Anytime a guy is averaging seven yards a carry, you know they can always take it to the house so it’ll take a group effort. The front seven has to do an excellent job staying on blocks and hopefully making plays.
“His role has increased. He’s doing a lot more things for them. He catching a lot more screens, he’s breaking a lot more runs. I don’t think he was averaging seven yards a carry when we played them the first time.”
While the Patriots have been criticized non-stop for their inability to stop the pass, they’re allowing just 88 yards a game on the ground, tied for seventh in the NFL.
“Yeah, it is [satisfying] but you’re only as good as your last performance so we have to go out here and play well,” Mayo said.
|Setting the scene: Patriots-Bills||at 10:55 am ET|
FOXBORO — It will be unseasonably warm and comfortable at Gillette today as the Patriots and Bills meet for the second time in 2012. Temperatures in the mid-60s and mostly sunny skies are expected for the Veterans Day matchup.
There will be a military fly-over and a large American flag covering the field during the national anthem as service men and women are honored.
The Patriots will be without tight end Aaron Hernandez, who is again sitting out due to an ailing right ankle, initially injured against the Cardinals on Sept. 16. Hernandez missed three games and returned for games against Seattle and the Jets. His ankle, which is limiting his ability to cut on routes, flared up and kept him out of the Rams game in London. Today will be the second straight game he will be inactive.
Today could mark the debut of tight end Visanthe Shiancoe, who was activated off injured reserve on Saturday, taking the roster spot of Brandon Bolden, who was suspended Friday for four games for a violation of the NFL performance enhancing drug policy.
One thing always seems to be certain when the Patriots play the Bills, wild momentum swings at the beginning and ends of games.
And more often than not, it’s the Patriots who come out on the winning end.
On Sept. 23 in Buffalo, the Bills raced out to a 21-7 lead in the third quarter, only to have the Patriots run off 38 straight points en route to a 52-28 win.
Last year, it was the Patriots who shot out to a 21-0 lead, only to lose 34-31 on a last-second field goal in Buffalo. Then, on the final week of the season last year, it was the Bills who jumped out 21-0 only to see the Patriots run off 49 unanswered in a season-ending win.
The Patriots are 10-0 lifetime against the Bills at Gillette Stadium and have won two straight in the series since having their 13-game winning streak snapped against Buffalo in Sept. 2011.
Bill Belichick is 9-3 after the bye week, with six of those wins coming against the Bills in the last 10 seasons.
|Bill Belichick: Sunday vs. Bills ‘can’t get here soon enough’||11.10.12 at 1:43 am ET|
FOXBORO — Even Bill Belichick can get anxious to get back on the field after a week off thanks to the NFL schedule-makers.
“Seems like a month since we’ve played,” the Patriots coach admitted Friday morning. “I think everybody is excited to get back out there and get going. We have a lot of challenges here with Buffalo in all three phases of the game as a team. Hopefully we’re ready to meet those and get back out on the field and start playing again. We’ve had a lot of practice time, a lot of film time, a lot of meeting time but like I said, I think we’re excited and ready to get back out there and go. It can’t get here soon enough.”
Belichick was asked if he felt the Patriots were further ahead this week because of the extra day of practice on Tuesday. Belichick hedged, saying the Bills give the Pats more to prepare for because of their explosive offense and special teams.
“Maybe a little bit but they give you a lot to get ready for,” Belichick said. “We could probably take a month to get ready for Buffalo and still be working on something.”
What about his players? Are they extra juiced?
“I think we try to, as I said last week [for] St. Louis, I think we try to work back so we have the same schedule at the end of the week leading up to the game,” Belichick said. “So Sunday is Sunday, Saturday is Saturday, Friday is Friday, Thursday is Thursday, whether it’s a short week or a long week, at the other end of it, the days leading up to the game are consistent. So the player can get into, regardless of what happens the first or second or first four days, the last four, three, two, one days are pretty consistent for their routine so they can get into that routine leading up the game.
“I’m saying I think those days leading up to the game are pretty consistent whether it’s a Monday night game where you have an extra day or it’s a Sunday game after a Monday night game where you’re short a day. Those days at the end are kind of the same, pretty much the same, so that the player can get into that same routine so he can be at the same point weekly. It’s not one week it all peaks and then the next week you’re on the down slope and the next week it peaks. You try to have it hit that crest every game. I mean, the team’s emotional and personally is each guy the same the exact emotional state every week? I don’t know but the idea is to get to the highest point possible at that time and it’s by sequencing the final days to try to facilitate that. That’s the best way I can put it I guess.”
Here is the rest of Friday’s Q and A with reporters:
Read the rest of this entry »
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