The Patriots were about to at least tie the game against the Bills, but Cam Newton fumbled.
The New England Patriots are losers of four straight, and to be honest this one might’ve hurt the most. Bill Belichick’s side entered this week’s matchup against the division-rival Buffalo Bills as fairly big underdogs and wanted to make a statement.
And they were doing just that, for a good portion of the game. After holding Buffalo to a field goal with four minutes remaining, the Bills’ lead was just 24-21 and Cam Newton had more than enough on the clock with three timeouts to at the very least tie this one up.
The offense was responding well. Damien Harris was running strong. Rex Burkhead was making plays. Jakobi Meyers was producing big catches. Newton was spreading the ball around and ripping off some big runs himself.
But then he fumbled deep into Bills territory, and that was it.
With under 40 seconds remaining, the Pats had a 2nd and 10 from the Bills’ 19-yard line and were looking to either punch it in or give kicker Nick Folk a chip shot to send it into overtime. But Newton didn’t protect the ball on this run play that would’ve gained New England another seven yards.
Go check out the discourse on Twitter. It’s not very nice, and certainly not appropriate. It’s also dumb, because some fans want him traded, and that’s just not happening. He wasn’t great today, but he held up against one of the league’s most talented defenses.
Then again, his return from COVID-19 has been downright ugly, and fans have a right to be upset. But guess what? Then you have to blame the defense, which got gashed all day on the ground. You have to blame the offensive line for failing to protect Newton most of the time. You have to blame the front office for putting together this awful wide receiving corps.
It’s all not solely on Newton, but this fumble was terrible timing for the former MVP, who needed one bounce to go his way to escape this nightmare of a stretch. Instead, the Patriots are now 2-5 and could be selling at the deadline.