There is no stat that came out of Sunday’s game between the Patriots and the Bills more incredible than the one about Buffalo being the first team to not punt in a game against a Bill Belichick-coached team. That’s just ridiculous.
However, there are at least two others that might be noteworthy for Patriots fans, and neither of them are good.
The first: Sunday’s 33-21 loss at Gillette Stadium guarantees the Patriots will finish below .500 at home for the first time since 2000, Belichick’s first season as head coach in New England. The Patriots, who began the season 0-4 in Foxboro, Mass., now are 3-5 at Gillette Stadium with one home game remaining. They’ll host the Jacksonville Jaguars this Sunday.
Believe it or not, the 2020 Patriots, who finished 7-9, were 5-3 at home. Go figure.
The second stat: New England now is 2-5 in December over its last two seasons. Belichick’s team went 1-2 in its 2021 December slate, including back-to-back losses to close out the month. They went 1-3 in 2020.
In fact, in Brady’s final season in Foxboro, the Patriots went 2-3 in December. So, they’re 4-8 over their last three seasons. That simply isn’t good enough.
To bring this all together: The Patriots are 2-4 at home in December of their last three campaigns.
There are many, many things that made the Patriots so consistently dominant and dangerous during the Brady years. Near the top of the list is just how good New England almost always was both at home and in December. Opposing teams dreaded playing in Gillette Stadium, particularly at the end of the season, when Brady and the Patriots typically were playing their best football.
Now? Entering Foxboro during the holiday season and leaving with a victory apparently isn’t all that difficult.