The New England Patriots are down to their 3rd string quarterback and are facing a 2015 playoff team in prime time. It’s going...pretty well, actually.
The Patriots won the coin toss for the first time all season and elected to defer the decision to the second half.
The Houston Texans offense were forced into two third down scenarios on their opening drive before punting to the Patriots. The Patriots responded with a three-and-out of their own.
The Patriots defense was trying to entice the Texans into running the ball and Houston had a fair bit of success running up the middle. Fortunately for New England, they were able to force another punt and rookie QB Jacoby Brissett and the Patriots offense marched down to the Texans 6 yard line before stalling and settling for a field goal.
On the ensuing kick off, Patriots RB Brandon Bolden forced a fumble on the Texans kick returner and New England recovered. Brissett immediately scrambled 27-yards for a touchdown and a 10-0 lead.
The Texans failed to cross midfield all half, thanks to an interception by LB Jamie Collins and some fantastic punting by Ryan Allen, who pinned the Texans on the 11-, 10-, and 10-yard lines.
The Texans offense consists of having RB Lamar Miller pick up yards on early downs (65 yards from scrimmage) and then having WR DeAndre Hopkins make catches that can’t be defended (3 receptions, 40 yards). It’s been a pretty good half by the Patriots defense.
Patriot RB LeGarrette Blount has a mere 11 yards on 7 carries so he will have to step up in the second half. Brissett is 5 of 8 for 59 yards on the day, with passes to four different receivers.
New England leads 10-0 and receives the ball after half time.