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Patriots ‘didn’t play our best football when it mattered the most’ in loss to Raiders

New England had a chance for a comeback in Week 6 but ended up short.

NFL: New England Patriots at Las Vegas Raiders Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Just like in Weeks 1 and 2, the New England Patriots had a chance to compete for the win late in their Week 6 matchup versus the Las Vegas Raiders. The result, however, was more of the same: the team was unable to make the necessary plays, ultimately falling short.

Following a Raiders punt in the late fourth quarter, New England took possession with 2:23 left in the game. Facing a 19-17 deficit at that point, the team needed to drive around 55-60 yards to give kicker Chad Ryland a realistic shot.

But while the first play of the series was promising — a 6-yard pass to Rhamondre Stevenson — the team only went backwards from that point on. A Stevenson run on second down was negated by penalty, to move the ball back to the New England 8. An incomplete deep pass was followed by a delay of game penalty and eventually, on 3rd-and-15, a sack in the end zone for a game-clinching safety.

“Had a chance to win. Thought we competed hard all day. Didn’t play our best football when it mattered most, and just have to do a better job,” said center David Andrews.

“Excited for a chance to win. Excited for a chance to go down there and be in it at the end. Two penalties and a negative play cost us. “

The takedown of quarterback Mac Jones sealed the team’s fifth loss of the season. It also meant that the Jones-led Patriots have yet to complete a comeback attempt this season, and have fallen short on all of their come-from-behind bids since Week 5 of 2021.

“I think it’s just frustrating for everybody, just the whole team, coaching staff, everybody,” said running back Rhamondre Stevenson after the game. “I think we put ourselves in a good position to win the game. We fought hard all four quarters, so I’m happy with that about our team, but we need to find a way to win.”

Now at 1-5 and headed into back-to-back division matchups with the Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins, the Patriots continue looking up in the AFC East and the race for a playoff spot. Their inability to climb out of holes they repeatedly put themselves in is a big reason why.