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AFC East Report: Week 3

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After three weeks of regular season action, the Patriots find themselves in a familiar place: alone atop the AFC East.

Poor kid.
Poor kid.
Steven Ryan-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots head into their bye week with a 3-0 record after blowing out the visiting Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday. Due to their perfect record, the team will remain in a spot they are all too familiar with until week five: alone atop the AFC East.

Here's how the rest of the division fared in week three:

t-2nd: Buffalo Bills (2-1)

Week 3: win (41-14 against the Miami Dolphins, in Miami FL)

The Bills rebounded nicely from their week two loss to the Patriots by routing the Dolphins in South Florida. An efficient offense (which gained 428 yards) and a stingy defense (which recorded three interceptions) combined to take down the team's division rival. Buffalo started quick on both sides of the ball, forcing a three-and-out to open the game and subsequently drove 77 yards in five plays for its first touchdown of the day. Quarterback Tyrod Taylor (21/29, 277 yds, 3 TDs) was perfect on this drive - a sign of things to come as Taylor had his best game as a pro. He looked comfortable leading the Bills offense and, as opposed to last week, avoided mistakes. While Taylor and the entire offense did not turn the ball over, Buffalo's defense was able to come up with three takeaways. One was returned 43 yards for a touchdown by Preston Brown, who had two interceptions on the day - both in the first half, which the Bills won 27-0. Overall, the Bills delivered a near-perfect and very disciplined performance. The few blemishes (one missed 54-yard field goal attempt, seven times tackled for loss, 5.1 yds/carry given up) were never enough to change the outcome of a game clearly dominated from start to finish by the visitors from upstate New York.

To watch highlights of the game, click here.

t-2nd: New York Jets (2-1)

Week 3: loss (24-17 against the Philadelphia Eagles, in East Rutherford NJ)

Statistically, the Jets look like they were the superior team on Sunday: more yards (323-231), more time of possession (31:49-28:11), more first downs (19-18). However, a game is not won on the stat sheet but by the plays that are or are not made - and the Jets had plenty of those not go their way. Especially in the first two quarters, the team played an abysmal game in all three phases and thus found itself down 24-7 at intermission. Prior to New York's last offensive series of the first half, which ended with a 16-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick (35/58, 283, 2 TDs, 3 INTs) to Brandon Marshall (10/109 yds, 1 TD, 1 lost fumble), the Jets only gained one first down. In the meantime, the Eagles moved the ball at will both through the air and on the ground and even scored on an 89-yard Darren Sproles punt return. New York settled down in the second half and tried to come back from the 17-point halftime deficit but was unable to gain momentum due to three interceptions by Fitzpatrick, two of them late in the fourth quarter when it was a 10-point game. Overall, the Jets made too many mistakes to win the game - and the final one effectively ended it: edge defender Quinton Coples was flagged for illegal hands to the face during what would have been a critical third-down stop with 1:14 left in the game. After two kneel-downs, the Jets' first loss of the season became official.

To watch highlights of the game, click here.

4th: Miami Dolphins (1-2)

Week 3: loss (41-14 against the Buffalo Bills, in Miami FL)

One week after losing to the Jacksonville Jaguars, the Dolphins have lost their second game of the season and are now the only AFC East team with a sub-.500 record. While the game against the Patriots' week three opponent was relatively close, the one against the visiting Buffalo Bills wasn't. By the time Ryan Tannehill (26/49, 297 yds, 2 TDs, 3 INTs) found Rishard Matthews (8/113 yds, 2 TDs) for a 21-yard touchdown to give the team its first points of the day, the Bills were already up 27-0. Matthews was one of the few bright Miami spots yesterday and has been able to develop some nice chemistry with his quarterback in 2015. Outside of the four-year veteran receiver, though, the team's offense was unable to generate any rhythm or big plays. Tannehill throwing three first-half interceptions - one of which was returned for a score - certainly didn't help. While he and the entire unit were able to settle down in the last 30 minutes, it was too little too late. The same goes for Miami's defense, which improved a bit in the second half but had a horrendous overall performance. The defensive front was unable to generate consistent pressure and the secondary often found itself out of position to make plays. As a result, the Bills were able to gain 428 yards of offense, while converting 7 of 13 3rd-down-attempts. Add it all up, and a blowout loss is the result.

To watch highlights of the game, click here.