The 2019 NFL season is over for the New England Patriots after a stunning 20-13 loss last night at Gillette Stadium against the Tennessee Titans.
Coming into the season, the expectations were sky-high that the Patriots would be the last team standing.
Fast forward to now, and they are the second team sent home on Wild Card Weekend, thus beginning a long offseason filled with a lot of uncertainty.
But that is a story for a different time, as now it is time to reflect on the disappointing end to what was once a promising season that could’ve resulted in a seventh Super Bowl title.
During the Bill Belichick era, New England had only played in 3 Wild Card games before last night (bringing the total to four), and they now have a .500 record in those games. This was also the first time in 10 years that they came into the playoffs without a first-round bye, and they still have never made it to and/or won the Super Bowl without that coveted bye.
That unfortunate trend will continue after the Titans went into Foxboro and dethroned the defending champs 20-13.
The New England Patriots came into this game at 12-4 and were winners of the AFC East, while the Tennessee Titans were the No. 6 seed at 9-7 after finishing second in the AFC South. Playing at home has always been an advantage for the Patriots, and it looked like the Gillette Stadium magic was going to bail them out one more time.
Throughout the game, both the Titans and Patriots were neck-and-neck from start to finish. New England put points on the board first with a field goal, but Tennessee quickly answered to take the lead back 7-3.
Then Julian Edelman scored a rushing touchdown to put the Patriots back on top 10-7, then added to their lead with a field goal to go up 13-7.
Those would be the last points they would score in the game, however. The Titans scored to end the first half and take the lead, 14-13. Brady threw a pick-six at the end of the fourth quarter to make the game 20-13.
Now, it is time to take a look back at my four keys – or 4 Downs – that would either help the New England Patriots extend their 2019 season or start the offseason quicker than expected.