BOSTON (CBS) — The Patriots’ defense took the field on Sunday and didn’t have the sharpest opening drive. The unit made up for it on its second chance.

With the game tied at 7-7 after long opening drives by each team, the Browns took over at their own 29-yard line. Faced with a third-and-7, Mayfield had pressure in his face from Christian Barmore (blowing two Browns O-linemen backward) and Dont’a Hightower.

Mayfield rushed his throw to David Njoku. Second-year safety Kyle Dugger had an easy read on it and broke for the ball, picking it off at the Browns’ 42-yard line.

From there, Rhamondre Stevenson patiently waited out a well-blocked run to the left side before bursting into the end zone for the go-ahead touchdown.

Nick Folk’s extra point gave New England a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter.

Dugger — the Patriots’ top pick in 2020 — didn’t record an interception in his rookie season. But Sunday’s pick marked his third interception in 10 games this season.

CBSBoston.com Staff