With the Patriots set to travel to Buffalo to take on the division rival Bills, let’s take a look at how the teams stack up statistically. Provided below are where they rank overall in the NFL along with the number value. All of the stats below come courtesy of NFL.com’s team stats page.
Total Offense: Pats 2nd overall (411.7 yards per game), Bills 29th overall (273.8 ypg)
Points Per Game: Pats 6th overall (26.8), Bills 26th overall (16.5)
3rd Down Percentage: Pats 7th overall (43%), Bills 31st overall (26%)
Passing: Pats 2nd overall (293.2 ypg), Bills 29th overall (160.5 ypg)
Rushing: Pats 14th overall (118.5 ypg), Bills 17th overall (113.4 ypg)
Points Per Game: Pats 7th overall (18), Bills 15th overall (20.8)
Yards Allowed Per Game: Pats 11th overall (320.6 ypg), Bills 24th overall (359.8 ypg)
Yards Per Play: Pats 19th overall (5.4 ypp), Bills 13th overall (5.2 ypp)
3rd Down Percentage: Pats 17th overall (38%), Bills 26th overall (40%)
Passing Yards Allowed Per Game: Pats 14th overall (211.3 ypg), Bills 5th overall (189.2 ypg)
Rushing Yards Allowed Per Game: Pats 16th overall (109.3 ypg), Bills 32nd overall (170.5 ypg)
Interceptions: Pats 12th overall (14 INTs), Bills 1st overall (25 INTs)
Forced Fumbles: Pats 8th overall (15 FF), Bills 21st overall (11 FF)
Looking quickly at the stats, one could surmise that the Patriots hold a clear advantage, for the most part. However, the Bills are in the top 5 for passing defense and lead the NFL in interceptions. The passing game is the Patriots strong suite and the Bills played them tough in the season opener. The Bills can also get pressure on the quarterback with their front four, which helps their defensive backs take chances on picks and shut down passing games. However, with the running game picking up steam in recent weeks, and the Bills ranked dead last in stopping the run, the Patriots will likely look to exploit that weakness. The Pats absolutely need this win to ensure that they win the AFC East. They cannot rely on Miami losing more than they do down the stretch, especially with Chad Henne playing better and better every week.
Here are some quick notable injury/practice hits:
- Tom Brady, Ty Warren, and Vince Wilfork all did not participate in practice Wednesday due to injuries. Randy Moss also did not participate in practice, but the reason was listed as “Not Injury Related.” With all of the hoopla over Moss this week, I’m sure this will only fuel more speculation that something’s up with Moss.
- Fred Taylor had limited participation in practice due to his ankle injury, but the fact that he practiced is a good sign. Having him return to bolster the running game for the remainder of the season, especially against the Bills, will only serve to improve the Pats’ chances of winning.
- Sam Aiken, Tully Banta-Cain, Julian Edelman, Jarvis Green, Nick Kaczur, Stephen Neal, Myron Pryor, and Ben Watson were also limited in practice due to injuries. It is still early in the week and this certainly does not mean that these players won’t play Sunday.
- Jonathon Scott (tackle) and Kendall Simmons (guard) were the only Bills who did not participate in practice (both injury-related).