GAME BALLS & GOATS: Bills - Patriots

When the Patriots needed to score they did. Capitalizing on three Buffalo turnovers, the Patriots put up TDs when they needed to and ultimately put the game out of reach against a stout Buffalo defense. The Bills kept things close, and didn't appear out of the game even when they were down by two scores. Patriots Insider provides their Game Balls and Goat awards. Send us yours.





Send us your Game Balls & Goats


Here are the Patriots Insider Awards:

Grade: B-plus

The team looked like it was going to blow out the Bills early, then the third quarter showed a number of flaws with the offensive line. Brady was harrassed again when the team knew that Buffalo was going to bring pressure. Team score when they had to, so overall it was a postive grade.

Good: special teams, receivers back in the mix, and defense was stifling.
Bad: Run blocking late in the game. Some poor pass protection slips.


  • Laurence Maroney - He wasn't supposed to grab that ball on his long return, but he sure turned it into a great play 74-yard return.

  • Ben Watson - Was there ever a moment you didn't think the big tight end was going to make a play? He was making plays everywhere. 5 catches for 60 yards... Watson leads all Patriot receivers.

  • Run Defense - Willis McGahee 20 rushes for 59 yards is all you need to know. The defense focused on McGahee, and aside from that one long shovel pass, he was bottled up for less than 3 ypc.


  • Pass protection - When Brady had time he found plays everywhere. When he didn't it was ugly.

  • Playcalling - not for the whole game, but the third quarter the playcalling seemed a bit odd. In the fourth quarrter, the Patriots tried to run the clock out, but the formations weren't fooling the Bills at all. Buffalo keyed on the ball and snuffed out repeated drives.

  • TV Coverage - It took 5 minutes for the CBS TV crew to realize Brady fumbled the ball late in the game a critical time. Dierdorf commented on the play but was wrong in his first take on the call. They did go back and clean up their coverage, but overall the coverage was shoddy at times with the play continuing while the broadcasting group missed the action on the field. Much better than Randy Cross, but still a bit slow.


How do I participate?
Easy, just pick (up to) 3 things that went right and three things that went wrong in the game. Tell us the PLAYER, and your opinion of why they deserve a Game Ball or a Goat award.

Who can vote?
It's open to anyone interested in sharing their thoughts on the game, Pats fans or fans of the other team. Just remember we ask that you keep it clean.

Who can I vote for?
Any player, coach, unit (offense/defense/specials teams), the referees even the announcers are fair game. You make the call.

Where do I send in my nominations?
Send us your Game Balls for great plays the Patriots made, and your Goats for all the mistakes they made.

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