The Patriots made a statement on Sunday afternoon when they defeated the New York Jets 54-13 at Gillette Stadium. This is the Pats' first win at home in the 2021 campaign.
Jets QB Zach Wilson was injured early on and did not return, so backup QB Mike White played most of the game for New York.
The Patriots offense looked hot right out of the gate and it never slowed down. Their 54 points scored was the 7th most in team history and the first time the team has scored over 50 since Sept. 27, 2015 when the team defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 51-17.
One of the main criticisms of the team so far is that the offensive play calling has been too conservative. Caution was thrown to the wind however as the first drive of the game for the Patriots was capped off with a touchdown pass from Kendrick Bourne, who threw to teammate Nelson Agholor.
Mac Jones shined as he surpassed the 300 yard mark for the first time in his young career, going for 307 yards and 2 touchdowns on 24/36 attempts. Brian Hoyer took over late in the game going 3/4 for 79 yards, including a big play to N'Keal Harry.
The running game could not be stopped as Damien Harris ran straight through the Jets defense on 14 carries for 106 yards and two scores. JJ Taylor also ran for 21 yards on 9 attempts for two TDs.
Eleven different Patriots caught passes Sunday and Brandon Bolden led the squad with 6 receptions for 79 yards and a touchdown. Kendrick Bourne was right behind him with 4 catches for 68 yards. Hunter Henry also caught a touchdown, extending his streak to four games.
Unfortunately for the Patriots, defensive back Jonathan Jones was put on IR, keeping him out for the rest of the season as he recovers from shoulder surgery. If the Pats are willing to make a move this trade deadline, they must look to improve the secondary.
New England advances to 3-4 as they continue to chase the playoffs. The Patriots will play the Chargers, who recently were blown out by the Ravens before their Week 7 Bye week, on Halloween at 4:05. If the Patriots can win in Los Angeles against the Chargers, a 4-4 record going up against the struggling Panthers can give them the momentum they need to make a playoff push.