Patriots Week Two Recap

Max Davis, Sports Editor

Week two saw a highly anticipated AFC Championship rematch between the New England Patriots and the Jacksonville Jaguars. The game was prefaced by some juicy trash talk, Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey has had an offseason of trash talking players across the league. More recently he targeted Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, saying that he “wasn’t that good” and that he didn’t fear the all-pro tight end. The Patriots were hoping to silence all this noise when they traveled to Jacksonville for the tough week two matchup.

The game started with a missed 54-yard field goal from Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski. It only went downhill from there as the Jaguars scored three quick touchdowns in the air. The Patriots offense faltered against the star-studded Jacksonville defense and couldn’t get anything started in the first half. The score stood at 21–3 Jaguars as both teams went into the locker rooms at halftime.

The second half opened with a quick Jaguars field goal to expand their lead to 21 points. The Patriots took advantage of a couple bad Jaguars drives and marched down and scored a touchdown to cut the lead. It appeared that the tide of the game had shifted as the Jaguars’ next two possessions ended up in a punt and an interception. However, the Patriots capitalized with only one field goal. With only eight minutes left in the fourth, the Patriots needed a stop to continue a comeback. However, the defense let up a 61-yard catch and score to the Jaguars which effectively put the game out of reach. Tom Brady dished a second passing touchdown to Chris Hogan in garbage time and the Patriots lost 31–20.

The defense looked helpless all day against Blake Bortles, helping him to a 377-yard, four touchdowns, and one interception game. However, the real struggles lay in the offense. Tom Brady had a less than god-like game going 24/35 with only 234 yard and two touchdowns. He had no help from the rushing game which only managed 82 yards on 24 carries. It seemed like the offense forfeited every opportunity that they had to get back into the game.

Although this game result was unsettling, it is only the second game of the season. The Patriots are known for slow starts and making great adjustments throughout the season. The team needs to refocus and put the game behind them, instead focusing on next week. They face off with the Detroit Lions next week, led by former Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia. The game is slated for primetime on Monday night at 8:20 PM.


Things to note:

  • Rookie Patriots RB Sony Michel was surprisingly deemed active this week. He only managed 34 yards on ten carries but showed flashes of excellence on the ground. In the coming weeks, expect him to be integrated more in the offense and become the lead back the Patriots drafted him to become.
  • Patriots WR Chris Hogan was a standout star in the loss and had three receptions for 42 yards and two scores. It was a great rebound game for Hogan after a rough week one.
  • TE Rob Gronkowski was nowhere to be found in the game plan against the Jaguars. He was only targeted four times by Tom Brady and only had two catches for fifteen yards.
  • The Patriots had zero sacks in week two and the defensive line got battered by the Jaguars’ offense.
  • Patriots DEs Deatrich Wise Jr. and Trey Flowers both left the game with injuries. Flowers is reportedly going through the concussion protocol after a collision during the game. These injuries are tough for the Patriots, who are already missing DE Derek Rivers with an injury. These are the three top pass rushers for the Patriots, who have struggled with pressuring QBs as of late.
  • Patriots OL LaAdrian Waddle had a really tough week against the Jaguars pass rush. Injury prone OL Marcus Cannon should be back soon to replace him in the starting lineup. The offensive line needs to better if the Patriots are going to make a Super Bowl run this year.