The New England Patriots’ Week 13 performance started fairly innocuous, but nearly everything that could have gone wrong did against the Philadelphia Eagles after two second quarter touchdowns.
The Patriots failed on two onside kicks by safety Nate Ebner. Tom Brady threw two interceptions, including a 99-yard pick six. The Patriots gave up an 83-yard punt return score to Darren Sproles after a bizarre sequence in which offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels couldn’t decide whether he wanted to kill the clock or attempt a score at the end of the first half.
The narrative after the Patriots’ loss was that head coach Bill Belichick’s decision to attempt an onside kick in the second quarter while up 14-0 angered the Eagles, changed the momentum of the game and lost it. The decision fairly can be questioned, but it took far more for the Patriots to beat themselves Sunday.
Check out this week’s advanced stats:
Jonathan Freeny: 3-3, 29 yards
Patrick Chung: 1-2, 20 yards, PBU
Logan Ryan: 2-3, 18 yards
Malcolm Butler 2-4, 14 yards, TD, PBU
Devin McCourty: 1-3, 5 yards, TD
Nate Ebner: 1-1, 2 yards
Rob Ninkovich: 0-1
Jamie Collins: 0-1, PBU
Jerod Mayo: 0-1, PBU
Jabaal Sheard: PBU
— The Patriots allowed just 120 yards passing to Eagles quarterback Sam Bradford, and many of those came in zone by the Patriots.
— Butler and Ryan performed well again, though both allowed big catches in the fourth quarter.
— McCourty slipped on the 5-yard touchdown he allowed to tight end Zach Ertz.
Chandler Jones: three hurries
Jabaal Sheard: three hurries
Malcom Brown: three hurries
Patrick Chung: QB hit, hurry
Akiem Hicks: two hurries
Jerod Mayo: sack
Jamie Collins: QB hit
Alan Branch: hurry
Rob Ninkovich: hurry
— The Patriots were able to get consistent pressure on Bradford, but they weren’t able to close. Bradford gave himself up on Mayo’s 0-yard sack. The Patriots also missed linebacker Dont’a Hightower as a pass rusher.
— Brown is continuing to improve as a pass rusher as his rookie season progresses.
— Sheard has made a big impact as a pass rusher since coming back from an ankle injury and has passed Ninkovich on the season pressures list
Sebastian Vollmer: two sacks, two QB hits, five hurries
Josh Kline: sack, four QB hits, hurry
Marcus Cannon: two QB hits, three hurries
Tre’ Jackson: two QB hits, two hurries
Shaq Mason: QB hit, hurry
Bryan Stork: QB hit, hurry
Tom Brady: sack
— Vollmer had a tough time with Eagles pass rusher Brandon Graham.
— Josh Kline had his worst game of the season as a pass protector. He also left with a shoulder injury.
— Brady tripped and fell backward on the sack he allowed to himself.
2. Thrown wide to Brandon Bolden, off his hands
5. Drop by Keshawn Martin
7. Drop by Scott Chandler
8. Pass breakup
9. Drop by Danny Amendola
11. Thrown into double coverage, interception
13. Drop by Martin
14. Brandon LaFell doesn’t keep running, interception
15. Drop Chandler
16. Low throw to Amendola
18. Thrown behind LaFell
19. Drop by Martin
21. Pass breakup
22. Overthrow to LaFell
25. Drop by LaFell
26. Drop by Amendola
27. Drop by Martin
— Drops killed the Patriots. The Patriots had nine total in the game. The Patriots final drive ended with three consecutive drops. Brady clearly missed receiver Julian Edelman and tight end Rob Gronkowski.
— Brady was inaccurate on just eight of his 27 incompletions.
— Pressure caused four errant throws by Brady. He also had two throwaways.
Thumbnail photo via Stew Milne/USA TODAY Sports Images