There was plenty of hype surrounding the Las Vegas Raiders entering Week 3, and understandably so.
But a trip to Foxboro dialed back the Silver and Black buzz in a major way.
A great second half paved the way for a New England Patriots win Sunday afternoon at Gillette Stadium. Even on a day when Cam Newton was far from his best, the Patriots still managed to notch a 16-point win against the previously unbeaten Raiders, who were coming off an impressive win over the New Orleans Saints.
As they do every Monday morning throughout the season, Mike Florio and Chris Simms handed out superlatives for the latest Sunday slate during “Pro Football Talk.” Florio gave Bill Belichick and Co. the “Go Tuck Rule yourself” award for the matchup that brought Jon Gruden back to Foxboro for the first time since the memorable Patriots-Raiders divisional clash in 2001.
“…There was so much talk about, hey, the Raiders are 2-0 and they beat the Saints,” Florio said on NBC Sports. “And, ‘You better believe in the Raiders’ and ‘How are dare you not respect the Raiders?’ and, ‘You should pick the Raiders and Derek Carr is going to have a big day. You’re going to be sorry come Monday when the Raiders beat the’ — oh, 36-20, the Patriots won.
“It was that methodical, grind it out, grind it out, make you think for a while. That’s what the Patriots do. They make you think for a while that you’re actually going to have a chance to win and then you look at the scoreboard in the second half and you’re getting lapped by the Patriots. It happens all the time. They smother you, they make you think you got a chance and then, at the end of the day, you got no chance.”
It’s tough to imagine the Patriots will score a methodical victory this Sunday. New England will be hard-pressed to improve to 3-1 when it travels to Kansas City for a Week 4 matchup with the reigning Super Bowl champion Chiefs.