Newcomer Lee and Patriots Dominate With Physical 23-3 Victory Over Bills
Photo Credit AP/Adrian Kraus
The New England Patriots continue their dominance on the road as they defeat their division rival Buffalo Bills for their 13th straight win away from home along with their 15th straight season with 10 or more wins.
The game from the early going was a very defense-centric affair with kickers Stephen Gostkowski and Steven Hauschka doing the scoring in the first half.
Former Bills practice squad linebacker Eric Lee took it to his former team early with an interception inside the redzone as well as a sack which were the first in both categories of his career.
The Bills kept driving pulling out all the stops including a little bit of wildcat with Joe Webb taking snaps as an option quarterback. Though the gimmick formation was very useful in the early going, an overthrown pass toward the former Patriot Tavaris Cadet squandered an opportunity for a go ahead score.
The floodgates were opened with tight end Rob Gronkowski catching two passes for big gains along with running back Dion Lewis taking the Patriots to one yard line with Rex Burkhead finishing the drive.
Quarterback Tom Brady continued to go to Gronkowski with a takeaway catch and Burkhead marching it in for his second touchdown.
The Patriots barring the extracurricular activity on the offense, played very well in the second half making the adjustments needed while the Bills thought that what they had at the end of the first half would work throughout the game.
The Patriots are continuing to improve even when it seems like there’s nothing more to improve on and that alone should scare the rest of the NFL.
Top Performers: Offense – 4 Defense – 2
Rob Gronkowski: Gronkowski is healthy, therefore the Bills were in for a long day as the league’s best tight end had nine receptions for 147 yards giving his hometown team fits.
Rex Burkhead: Burkhead continues to be one of the rising stars on this offense doing everything from catching passes to running the ball as a bell cow running back. With 12 carries for 78 yards and two scores, Burkhead is part of a two-headed running back monster that will be close to unstoppable.
Dion Lewis: Lewis is the guy getting it done as he has been one of the most explosive running backs in the NFL ever since taking over as starter. Lewis another 92 yards rushing today and expect more to come down the stretch
Eric Lee: A definition of one man’s trash being another man’s treasure, Lee who just a few weeks ago was on the Bills practice squad, turned in a breakout performance against his former team with his first interception, his second career sack, and four quarterback hits. Lee will not be off this team quick like Cassius Marsh and will most likely have his role increased with injuries on the defense.
Stephon Gilmore: Gilmore had yet another great performance in his first season in a Patriots uniform with this one coming against his former team. Gilmore only allowed one reception in each half. Gilmore was targeted three times in the end zone in a Bills fourth quarter drive denying receiver Zay Jones of a touchdown on a key fourth down at the one yard line.