Sunday was a rough day at the office for Tom Brady and the New England Patriots’ offense, which mustered nine points against a formidable Buffalo Bills defense.
New England won 16-10 at New Era Field thanks to a blocked-punt touchdown by Matthew Slater and another dominant defensive performance, but Brady found it difficult to fully enjoy the victory after posting an ugly 45.9 passer rating — his worst ever in a win — and throwing an interception in the end zone.
The Patriots went three-and-out on seven of their 11 meaningful possessions, and their running backs averaged just 3.2 yards per carry.
“I’m frustrated when we don’t play well,” Brady said Monday morning on WEEI’s “Greg Hill Show.” “I’m frustrated when we don’t score points. I’m happy when we win. It’s a lot of mixed emotions. I think when you win a game, it’s never like, ‘Man, I’m 100 percent in great spirits.’ And certainly when you lose sometimes, it’s not like I’m 100 percent negative. I’m trying to be realistic about how I felt out there, how I felt the game was going and our rhythm, so I’m just dealing with a lot of different emotions — the ups and downs, the mental grind of the game, the physical grind of the game.
“So it’s just a lot of mixed emotions. Ultimately, the goal is to win, and the defense is playing spectacular. I think the thing that hurts the most is the interception because we don’t score points. I believe that our defense is going to play really well all year, so scoring points are at a premium, even if it’s a field goal, so that one bothered me the most. But I’ve got to learn from it and not try to squeeze the ball where there’s defenders — especially against really good, playmaking secondaries — and try to score more touchdowns in the red area and kick less field goals and certainly not turn the ball over.”
Brady said the Patriots have identified particular areas that need improvement. They’ll look to address those ahead of this Sunday’s matchup with the winless Washington Redskins.
While he didn’t divulge any game-plan secrets, Brady did acknowledge some plays and concepts could be jettisoned from the playbook if the team believes they’re simply not working.
“There’s a lot of things we talk about that are things that we think we do well or things that we don’t do well,” Brady said. “I’m certainly not going to tell people that because it helps the opponent. I kind of know. I think our offense knows or Josh (McDaniels) knows and we talk about it a lot. No team is perfect this time of year. This is not the team we’re going to be in December. But to go on the road and get a win against a 3-0 team is a great feeling.
“Again, I wish we would’ve played better offensively. That would have helped us a lot. But we just didn’t execute very well in really any phase — the pass game, the run game. None of it was up to our expectation. So we’ll go in there, we’ll get coached on what we have to do better and try to go out and practice it and see if we can play better next week.”
The Patriots had not won a game while scoring 10 or fewer offensive points since Week 14 of the 2003 season.