The Patriots pulled off a massive upset, beating the Baltimore Ravens 23-17. The rain and wind stole the show for much of the game, making catching the ball difficult. The weather only got progressively worse throughout the night, with torrential downpours making the Ravens final drive with under a minute left nearly impossible. Not many people thought the Patriots could pull off this upset, not even most Pats fans, but they found a way to win. It was a complete team performance for New England, which is exactly what fans have been waiting for.
Cam’s Outfit Check
Ok, this one is bold. And I love it. To be honest, I am not really sure what pattern that is, but I love it. And those shoes make the outfit. There is not really much to say here other than that it is bold and amazing. 9 out of 10.
RB1 Damien Harris
The star of the show on offense last night was without a doubt, Damien Harris. He ran for 121 yards on 22 carries, both career highs for the young back from Alabama. The team has always spoken glowingly of Harris, and he is starting to show why. He finds holes and hits it with power and speed.
With Sony Michel still on the injured reserve, Harris had a chance to show what he can do. And he has not looked back. Even when Sony returns, Harris will still most likely get most of the carries. As someone who has defended Michel more than most, it is unfortunate that this might be the end of his road in New England, but Harris has been so good where he cannot be replaced.
Defense Stood Up
Great games from Chase Winovich, Kyle Dugger, and J.C. Jackson helped the Patriots to slow down the potent Ravens offense. Winovich had seven tackles and was all up in Jackson’s face all game. Kyle Dugger led the team with a career-high 12 tackles and was crucial in the defensive gameplan. The rookie has the size of a linebacker and the speed of a defensive back, something very important to covering Lamar Jackson.
J.C. Jackson is continuing to cement his place in New England. He now leads the league in interceptions with six and has one pick in each of the last five games, a franchise record. You can test him, but you are playing with fire and the undrafted free agent from 2018 is showing how good he is.
Have They Found Their Winning Formula?
The Patriots may have found how they can win games. Ball possession and pounding the rock. They were able to control the line of scrimmage and keep possession of the ball for a lot of the game. You saw a little bit of this last week, and it really showed in last night’s victory.
Running and a little bit of trickery from Josh McDaniels, who called a sensational game last night. Undoubtedly, the biggest play of the game was a 24-yard touchdown pass by wide receiver Jakobi Meyers to Rex Burkhead. Meyers was a high school quarterback and actually worked out with Cam Newton. Meyers also looked like he still has it, planting a seed right into Rex’s waiting arms. Some QBs in the league could not make that throw.
The Patriots were efficient and versatile on offense, and that proved to work out. It is definitely different from last season, but it is fun to watch.
A lot of talk leading up to this game was how Bill Belichick struggled drafting players. But last night, his drafting and ability to sign undrafted free agents showed. Damien Harris, Kyle Dugger, and Chase Winovich balled out, all drafted by Bill. Jakobi Meyers and J.C. Jackson were undrafted free agents, and boy has that worked out. Meyers is carving his role out and you have seen Jackson.
It is now time to stop talking about tanking for a quarterback and giving up. The team is now 4-5 with a shot at the playoffs. They are a couple of games back from Buffalo and Miami in the division, and they could still be in the wild card.
They found the formula in the pouring rain last night, and it looks like the evil empire in the Northeast is back on track. This team is extremely likable and you can tell they play hard for each other. Cam Newton’s smile is infectious, and the whole organization has rallied around QB1. Everything is now on the table for Cam and the Patriots. If you can get into the dance, anything can happen. On to Houston.