New England Patriots: Three Post-Bye Week Improvements the Team Needs to Make

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Sep 20, 2015; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) throws a pass tp tight end Rob Gronkowski (87) during the second against the Buffalo Bills half at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Patriots beat the Bills 40-32. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots have finished a week of self-scouting and are now preparing to play the Dallas Cowboys deep in the heart of Texas.

 

Catching a break, the Patriots will be playing the Cowboys while they are short on offensive firepower. The Cowboys will be without their top three offensive weapons in quarterback Tony Romo, wide receiver Dez Bryant, and receiving running back Lance Dunbar. Back-up wide receiver Brice Butler left the game last week with a hamstring injury after a 67 yard reception.

 

On defense, the Cowboys are getting defensive end Greg Hardy and linebacker Rolando McClain back but both may be rusty as neither has played since the preseason. The Cowboys lost their top cornerback Orlando Scandrick to injury for the season earlier in the summer.

 

Rookie defensive end Randy Gregory was explosive in week one, but has not played since suffering a high ankle sprain. Playmaking linebacker Sean Lee suffered a concussion last week and will need to be cleared of the league protocols to play against New England.

 

With an early week off to get ready to play the shorthanded Cowboys, the Patriots had some concerns of their own to figure out last week to get ready for the next three months of the regular season. Here are three areas of concern for the 3-0 Patriots to focus on in the coming months:

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