BOSTON (CBS) – Hours after falling just short of an amazing comeback over the San Francisco 49ers, the New England Patriots are ready to move on from their 41-34 loss and focus on the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Not too many players wanted to talk about Sunday night’s game after reporting to Gillette Stadium on Monday. In fact, all but one declined to speak to the media.
“I think we played tough,” defensive end Rob Ninkovich said of Sunday night’s loss. “I love the way that we fought the whole game, but you can’t put yourself in a hole like we did early in the game and expect to win.”
Ninkovich, who recorded his eighth sack of the season on Sunday, said the Patriots made too many mistakes early on to expect that comeback victory. While the Pats don’t want to lose games as the regular season winds down — especially at home — it’s something they hope to learn from with the playoffs right around the corner.
“You don’t want to have that feeling of a loss, but again I go back to taking this as a learning experience for us,” he said. “Just learn from it and move on.”
The loss currently puts the Patriots in the three-seed in the AFC, meaning they wouldn’t have the luxury of a first-round bye and would open the playoffs at home in three weeks. But that isn’t the focus with two regular season games remaining.
“I’m not even thinking of the playoffs right now,” said Ninkovich. “I’m just focusing in on the next two games.”
Those next two games shouldn’t be too hard compared to New England’s last two games, with a visit to Jacksonville to face the 2-12 Jaguars followed by a meeting with the 6-8 Dolphins at home to close things out.
After a quick review session of their loss to San Fran, the Patriots will shift focus to the Jaguars.
“You get the depth chart, see the guys you’re facing and I’ll probably watch some tape later in the night at home,” said Ninkovich.
With the everyone moving on, Sunday night’s loss won’t sit with Ninkovich for too long.
“Just today,” he said. “I’ll be mad today but I’ll come in tomorrow, get in my workouts.”
Tune in to Sunday’s Patriots-Jaguars game at 1pm on WBZ-TV and 98.5 The Sports Hub. Pregame coverage begins on 98.5 with Patriots Preview at 10am, followed by three hours of postgame coverage after the game. WBZ-TV kicks off their coverage at 11:30am with Patriots GameDay, followed by Bill Belichick and Tom Brady’s postgame press conferences on Patriots 5th Quarter after the game.