The New England Patriots have fumbled or muffed the football 12 times this year, per NFL’s official statkeeping. They fumbled three times against the Cardinals and Dolphins, once against the Texans, and an astounding five time against the Bills.
To put this in context, the Patriots fumbled or muffed the football 14 times in the entire 2015 season and 13 times in 2014. The Patriots have only fumbled 15 or more times in a season once since the start of the 2010 season.
Patriots season totals of fumbles+muffs:— Rich Hill (@PP_Rich_Hill) October 3, 2016
4 games of 2016: 12
While some of the fumbles have gone out of bounds, this still isn’t a good from the Patriots. The fumbles are coming from a range of players and from all facets of the game.
Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett have combined for 5 fumbles, losing two of them. Hopefully the return of QB Tom Brady will provide better pocket awareness and ball security.
LeGarrette Blount has fumbled 2 times in the run game, losing one of them. Danny Amendola and Julian Edelman have 1 fumble apiece on offense.
Amendola and Cyrus Jones have 3 fumbles or muffs in the return game, and Jones put another ball on the ground that was called back after an official review.
Every single player on the Patriots offense needs to do a better job of protecting the football, while the returnmen need to do a better job of catching the football before turning their eyes upfield.
Head coach Bill Belichick is most assuredly aware of this problem and he’ll work to fix this moving forward.