clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Patriots vs. Bills stats: New England runs all over its AFC East rivals in Week 13

Related: Instant analysis from Patriots’ 14-10 win over Bills

New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images

The New England Patriots survived a hostile environment to celebrate their seventh straight win. Going up against the Buffalo Bills in a pivotal AFC East matchup, the Patriots won 14-10 behind an impressive run-game outing and a defense successfully shutting down one of the most potent offenses in the game.

Let’s now take a look at some early statistics to come out of that contest.

Patriots vs. Bills: Team statistics

Team statistics

Stat Patriots Bills
Stat Patriots Bills
First downs 11 16
Third down 2-12 (16.7%) 4-12 (30.8%)
Fourth down 1-2 (50.0%) 0-1 (0.0%)
Total net yards 241 230
Net rushing yards 222 99
Net passing yards 19 131
Penalties 6-37 3-20
Turnovers 1 1
Red zone 0-1 (0.0%) 1-4 (25%)
Goal-to-go N/A 0-1 (0.0%)
Time of possession 32:01 27:59

The game between New England and Buffalo was a close affair, and the numbers reflect this. No team has a clear edge in any category, with the Bills actually more effective in earning first downs and sustaining drives.

However, the Patriots played a bend-don’t-break-type of game yet again: while they allowed their opponent to reach the red zone four times, only one of those was converted into a touchdown. In total, the Bills scored only 10 points in part due to its kicker missing a field goal attempt, and in part due to New England’s defense coming up big in crucial moments.

Patriots individual statistics

Passing statistics

Player Attempts Completions Completion rate Yards Touchdowns Interceptions Sacks Rating EPA/Play
Player Attempts Completions Completion rate Yards Touchdowns Interceptions Sacks Rating EPA/Play
Mac Jones 3 2 66.7% 19 0 0 0-0 84.0 0.01

Mac Jones’ day primarily consisted of handing the ball off to his running backs. That said, the rookie was asked to throw the ball a grand total of [checks notes] three times.

Fun fact: teams throwing the ball five or fewer times in a game are now 8-0-1 in the Super Bowl era. The last such game took place in 1982; coincidentally it was also played by the Patriots, who beat the Miami Dolphins 3-0 in the legendary Snowplow Game.

Rushing statistics

Player Carries Yards Average Touchdowns EPA/Play
Player Carries Yards Average Touchdowns EPA/Play
Rhamondre Stevenson 24 78 3.3 0 -0.25
Damien Harris 10 111 11.1 1 0.59
Brandon Bolden 4 28 7.0 0 0.24
Mac Jones 3 5 1.7 0 -0.23
Nelson Agholor 1 6 6.0 0 0.02
Kendrick Bourne 1 3 3.0 0 -0.29
Jonnu Smith 1 -1 -1.0 0 -0.76

In a game played in challenging conditions, the Patriots relied on their running game to get the job done against a talented defense. It delivered. In total, New England attempting 44 non-kneel-down carries for 230 yards and an average of 5.2 yards per attempt.

While the group had multiple important plays, the biggest came right in the first quarter: three plays after recovering a Josh Allen fumble, Damien Harris took a handoff on 3rd-and-5 64 yards into the end zone. The team then added a two-point conversion via a Brandon Bolden run.

Receiving statistics

Player Targets Receptions Yards Average Touchdowns EPA/Play
Player Targets Receptions Yards Average Touchdowns EPA/Play
Jonnu Smith 1 1 12 12.0 0 0.90
Brandon Bolden 1 1 7 7.0 0 -0.25
Nelson Agholor 1 0 0 0.0 0 -0.61

New England’s pass catchers had a quiet day in the receiving department; only two players — Jonnu Smith and Brandon Bolden — caught passes. That said, the group was heavily involved in the ground game as well: the Patriots’ wide receivers and tight ends were asked to help block for the ball-carriers essentially all day.

Front seven statistics

Player Tackles Sacks QB hits Interceptions Passes defensed Forced fumbles Recovered fumbles
Player Tackles Sacks QB hits Interceptions Passes defensed Forced fumbles Recovered fumbles
Davon Godchaux 10 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ja'Whaun Bentley 8 0 0 0 0 0 0
Dont'a Hightower 7 0 0 0 0 0 0
Lawrence Guy 4 0 0 0 0 0 1
Matthew Judon 3 1-9 2 0 0 0 0
Daniel Ekuale 2 1-5 1 0 0 0 0
Kyle Van Noy 1 0 1 0 1 0 0
Carl Davis 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Deatrich Wise Jr. 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Christian Barmore 1 0 1 1 0 0 0

New England’s front seven bounced back after giving up 271 rushing yards to the Tennessee Titans last Sunday. The group surrendered only 99 this time around, for an average of 4.0 yards per rush. While Bills quarterback Josh Allen did gain 39 yards on six rushes, he was the only ball-carrier doing serious damage on the ground.

Furthermore, the group sacked Allen two times. Matthew Judon, who entered the game with a team-leading 11.5 takedowns added another one in the fourth quarter. It was a big one: two plays later Bills kicker Tyler Bass missed a 33-yard field goal wide to the right.

Secondary statistics

Player Tackles Sacks QB hits Interceptions Passes defensed Forced fumbles Recovered fumbles
Player Tackles Sacks QB hits Interceptions Passes defensed Forced fumbles Recovered fumbles
Adrian Phillips 5 0 0 0 2 0 0
Myles Bryant 5 0 0 0 1 0 0
J.C. Jackson 2 0 0 0 1 0 0
Devin McCourty 2 0 0 0 0 0 0

Despite going up against one of the most potent passing units in the league, the Patriots’ secondary stood its ground. While Josh Allen did throw for 145 yards, he completed only 15 of 30 throws for one touchdown. In the meantime, New England’s coverage personnel made life tough on him and his receivers.

Kicking statistics

Player Field goals Extra points Punts Gross punt average Net punt average
Player Field goals Extra points Punts Gross punt average Net punt average
Nick Folk 2-2 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Jake Bailey N/A N/A 6 42.0 37.3

Despite kicking in challenging conditions, the Patriots’ personnel did its job well: Nick Folk made both of his field goal tries from 41 and 34 yards out, respectively, while Jake Bailey averaged 42 yards per punt. That being said, the third-year punter was impacted by the conditions: he had a 15-yarder in the first quarter. He also had a 71-yarder in the fourth quarter, though, even though it eventually ended as a touchback.

Return game statistics

Player Punt returns Punt return average Punt return touchdowns Kickoff returns Kickoff return average Kickoff return touchdowns Tackles
Player Punt returns Punt return average Punt return touchdowns Kickoff returns Kickoff return average Kickoff return touchdowns Tackles
N'Keal Harry 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Gunner Olszewski 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Cody Davis 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Brandon Bolden 0 0 0 0 0 0 1

The Patriots’ return game had a quiet day, with one exception: N’Keal Harry was asked to field a punt in the first quarter, but he muffed it. The Bills recovered at the New England 14-yard line and scored a touchdown on the very next play.