The Patriots’ Win Against Miami: What Went Into it
By SAMUEL BARRETT ‘21
Last Sunday, the New England Patriots faced the Miami Dolphins and won after losing the previous two games — the last time the Patriots lost two games in a row was in 2014. The Patriots finally began to work as a team again, and the rest of the season is looking up. With a strong offensive running game and a much more powerful defense, the team began to show its potential.
On Sunday, the Patriots’ offense appeared to have gotten its act together, with Sony Michel rushing over 100 yards and Cordarrelle Patterson’s 55-yard touchdown. In comparison to last week’s loss against the Lions, where the Patriots had a mere 133 passing yards and just over 60 rushing yards, this past week of practice seems to have paid off. In a post-game interview after the week 3 loss, head coach Bill Belichick stated, that “Everything [is] bad, and going into the next week we will be working hard to fix that.” We can assume that Belichick had the team working all week to prepare for Miami after its poor performance in Detroit. So, it seems that with some incentive and push from their coach, the previously inadequate offense finally worked out the early season kinks.
If you watched the game against the Lions you would’ve noticed that not only was the Patriots’ offense playing badly but also the their defense, which had recently lost 14-season veteran defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, let almost every rush go right through the defensive line and also gave up crucial stops on passing plays. In the first few games of the season, the Patriots played very poorly, barely beating the Houston Texans and losing to Jacksonville and Detroit, looking very different from the team that had made it to the Super Bowl the previous year.
In their most recent game, the team performed much better, clearly fixing many of the issues that followed them through their earlier games. Brady threw for 274 yards and Sony Michel ran for over 110 yards, in comparison to the previous week where Brady threw for 120 yards and Michel ran for only 50 yards. Along with the improved passing yards, Brady finally showed some chemistry between him and the wide receivers, throwing a beautiful pass to Cordarelle Patterson for a touchdown, and working well with James White and Phillip Dorsett for two more touchdowns. Additionally, the Patriots’ defense finally looked better and even got two sacks, compared to the one sack combined in the previous two weeks.
Major losses to the Patriot’s team prior to the season, such as losing a star defensive coordinator, Julian Edelman to a suspension, multiple other running backs, and Amendola to the Dolphins resulted in the shaky start to the 2018 season. Despite all of these struggles, the Patriots finally look good, again and going into the game against the Colts this week they will have WR Julian Edelman back and the team should look even better than it did against the Dolphins.