BOSTON (CBS) — Anyone who has watched the Patriots play during the Bill Belichick/Tom Brady era would be hard-pressed to try to recall a performance as inefficient as the one the team put forth on Sunday.
Though the first half had the Patriots making a number of plays and opening up a 10-point lead, absolutely nothing went right in the second half. The Dolphins outscored the Patriots 23-0 in the final 26 minutes of the game to win 33-20, and the Patriots walked away lacking any answers as to what exactly happened.
“You can’t play the way we played today and think we’ll win a game this season. There’s nothing positive to take away from the things we were doing,” quarterback Tom Brady said. “This was a good example of if you do the things that we did today, you’ll get beat. We played a good football team at home, we had a decent first half, but you have to put a good 60 minutes together if you’re going to beat them.”
Brady went 19-for-29 for 187 yards and a touchdown in the first half, but things went south in the second half, when he went 10-for-27 for 62 yards while getting sacked four times and fumbling twice.
“Truthfully, I don’t think we were really jelling anywhere today,” Brady said. “There wasn’t much positive from the quarterback position, the receiver position, the tight end position, the running back position — none of us can play like that and expect to win. So all of us have to go out and do a much better job than we did today, take the coaching, understand what we need to do better and then go out and execute next week.
“We just couldn’t sustain anything. We just had too many drives where we sputtered, and certainly in the second half and the third quarter — you can’t play football that way.”
Head coach Bill Belichick, who had seen his team win its last 10 season openers, offered a similarly simplistic explanation for the loss.
“We just didn’t play well enough or coach well enough or really do anything well enough. We didn’t do anything well enough in the second half, period,” Belichick said. “They did a better job than we did. Just wasn’t good enough.”
Neither the coach nor the quarterback put any blame on any one area in particular, instead taking a holistic approach toward improving.
“We’ve got to learn from it and go back to work,” Brady said. “Nobody’s going to feel sorry for us. The guys in the room have to dig deep, and we’ll have to see if we can go out and win next week.”
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