Michael Dwyer/Related Press
It wasn’t the prettiest sport for the New England Patriots. Head coach Invoice Belichick will undoubtedly stroll away sad together with his group’s lack of ability to complete drives. Stephen Gostkowski’s popularity as arguably the NFL’s steadiest kicker is on shakier floor.
However a win’s nonetheless a win.
Tom Brady threw for 333 yards and the Patriots protection turned in its fourth straight strong efficiency, as New England earned a 21-13 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday.
The Patriots managed the tempo of the sport all through, holding possession for practically 37 minutes and notching 27 first downs. Brady accomplished 32 of his 47 pbades to eight completely different receivers, with operating backs James White and Rex Burkhead doing a lot of the harm out of the backfield.
A final-minute comeback try by the Chargers fell brief deep in Patriots territory when Jonathan Jones intercepted a cross supposed for Travis Benjamin.
The Chargers had an opportunity to return again largely because of the Patriots’ lack of ability to complete off drives. Gostkowski went Four-of-6 on field-goal makes an attempt, and none of these kicks have been greater than 43 yards lengthy. Heading into Sunday, the Patriots kicker hadn’t missed a number of discipline objectives in a sport since 2012.
New England was simply 1-of-Four scoring touchdowns on red-zone makes an attempt, one thing Brady had lamented coming into this weekend.
“They’re essential performs,” Brady informed reporters of red-zone performs earlier this week. “It is a small margin of error, however I feel all of us understand that. It is a tight area. There are quite a lot of tight throws. It is simply one thing we have got to do a greater job of. Scoring these additional 4 factors, clearly, are very vital. We would like to convert extra, however we simply have not carried out in addition to we’re succesful.”
The Patriots have not scored greater than 24 factors since their Week Four loss to the Carolina Panthers, though they’ve received 4 straight video games. Most of that is because of red-zone inefficiency, as Gostkowski has transformed three or extra discipline objectives in 4 of the final 5 contests.
“The query solutions itself,” vast receiver Brandin Cooks informed reporters this week. “You’d relatively stroll away with a landing than a discipline purpose. We have been working at that.”
Brady’s lone landing got here on a second-quarter cross to Rob Gronkowski, whose 73 landing receptions are essentially the most within the NFL since his rookie season in 2010.
The Chargers offense carried out comparatively properly throughout its transient time on the sector. Rivers threw for 212 yards and a rating, and his interception got here on the last-ditch play to tie the sport. Melvin Gordon rushed for 132 yards, which was highlighted by an 87-yard rating within the first quarter.
Benjamin had a team-high 64 yards and a landing on his 5 grabs.
The Patriots now head into their bye in a well-known place, sitting alone in first place within the AFC East. They’re going to return for a Sunday night time matchup with the Denver Broncos on Nov. 12.
The three-5 Chargers may even head into their bye earlier than returning Nov. 12 for a matchup with the Jacksonville Jaguars.