The New England Patriots host their AFC East Rival Buffalo Bills at Gillette Stadium on Sunday at 1 p.m.
|The Bills||The Patriots|
|Overall Record||8-7||Overall Record||12-3|
|Road Record||3-4||Home Record||7-0|
|AFC East||3-2||AFC East||4-1|
|AFC Conf||4-7||AFC Conf||9-2|
Terry McAulay is the referee for the game.
As of Thursday the line on the game from sportsbetting.ag via Yahoo Sports has the Patriots at MINUS 5. The over/under is 44.
My Prediction is Patriots 27, Bills, 20. Give the points (Patriots) and take the over. I am 10-5 against the spread and 7 of 15 on calling the over/under in 2014.
The Patriots are reporting the game as a sell out. It is the 226th consecutive sell out dating back to the 1994 season opener. The record includes preseason, regular season and playoff games.
Tickets to the game, if available, can be purchased through Ticketmaster. You can check the availability here.
After market tickets are available through the Official Patriots Ticket Exchange where season ticket holders can sell their unused seats to fans on the season ticket waiting list.
Getting to the Game
If you’re lucky enough to be going to the game in Foxboro make sure you check out the links.
Here is the up to date weather forecast from the Weather Channel for Foxboro MA.
Here’s a bunch of different tailgating recipes from Tailgating.com. There’s something there for everyone and every type of meal or snack. I’ve tried some of the recipes and they’re very good.
You can find other recipes from the team on their website. Includes Gronk’s Buffalo Chicken Dip, Carne Asada Fries, Cincinnati Chili and more.
And with tailgating many people enjoy some adult beverages. With that in mind check out Drink Nation for how to make all sorts of great drinks. You can look things up by name, ingredient(s) or theme.
Whether it’s at the game, a bar or a friend’s house moderation is always the key to a great time. Please don’t drink and drive and designate a sober driver. Remember drive sober or get pulled over.
CBS in televising the game regionally and Spero Dedes will do play by play while Solomon Wilcotts will provide the game analysis. You can look here for your local affiliate.
See if you’re getting the game courtesy of J.P. Kirby at the506.com.
The DirecTV designation is Channel 715.
Here are all the rules on NFL TV broadcasts including explaining the blackout rules; flex scheduling and commercial breaks.
The Patriots Radio Network broadcasts the game from flagship station WBZ-FM, 98.5 the Sports Hub in Boston. Bob Socci handles the play-by-play and former Patriots QB Scott Zolak will do the game analysis. It all starts with Gary Tanguay and Andy Gresh with the pregame show at 10 a.m. on the network. The post game starts after the final gun and continues for three hours along the network.
The Patriots Radio Network call is available on Sirius Channel 132, XM Channel 230 and SiriusXM Internet Channel 818.
The Bills Radio Network has John Murphy calling the game while former Bills DB Mark Kelso provide the game analysis and Sal Capaccio works the sidelines via their flagship station, WGR-AM.
Their game call is available on Sirius Channel 108 and SiriusXM Internet Channel 803.
Patriots All Access
Patriots All-Access features behind the scenes looks, interviews and breakdowns with head coach Bill Belichick and in depth features on the team. It’s hosted by Steve Burton of WBZ-TV (Boston) and airs weekly in most New England television markets.
- Boston MA on TV 38 Friday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 9 a.m.
- Providence RI on WNAC Friday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 9 a.m.
- Manchester NH on WMUR Saturday at midnight
- Portland ME on WMTW Saturday at 5 a.m.
- Hartford CT on WCTX Saturday at 5 p.m.
- Springfield MA on WFXQ Saturday at 7 p.m.
- Bangor ME on WVII Sunday at 11 a.m.
You can also watch it anytime on the team website in the media section.
The Patriots edged the Jets on the road, 17-16 to clinch a first round bye and the Bills lost to the Raiders in Oakland 26-24 to get eliminated from playoff contention.
- This is the 110th meeting between the Patriots and the Bills since they started to face each other as AFL foes in 1960.
- The Patriots lead the series 67-41-1
- The 67 wins are the most the Patriots have over any opponent.
- Patriots have won 21 of the last 22 meetings with Buffalo’s only win coming in Week 3 of the 2011 season.
- Patriots won Week 6 at Buffalo, 37-22 and will go for another season sweep of the Bills.
Patriots Team Notes
- The Patriots overall franchise record is 450-376-9. They have won three Super Bowls (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XXXIX) in seven appearances. Overall they are 25-18 in the post season.
- They last appeared in the playoffs in 2013 when they beat Indianapolis in the AFC Divisional Round 43-22 and lost at Denver 26-16 in the AFC Championship Game.
- It was the 3rd consecutive AFC Championship game appearance for the franchise and 10th overall. They are 7-3 in those AFC title games.
- The Patriots are now the defending six-time AFC East Champions. They have won the division 12 times and the conference 5 times since 2000.
- New England is the only NFL team to finish .500 or better in each of the last 14 seasons (2001-2014).
- They are the first team in the free agency era (1993) to win more than half their games in a 14-season span.
- They have 12 consecutive seasons with at least 10 wins.(2003-14)
- Since the merger just one of two franchises with at least five consecutive 12-win seasons (Indianapolis, 7).
- Since the meger they have the third most 12-win seasons with 9 (tied with Pittsburgh and Denver) and behind Dallas (10) and San Francisco (13)
- All-time the 14 consecutive winning seasons stands 5th behind Chicago (1930-44) 15 seasons, Oakland (1965-80) and San Francisco (1983-98) 16 seasons and Dallas (1966-85) 20 seasons.
- Since the merger the Patriots have 29 winning seasons.
- Have made the playoffs in 22 seasons including 12 of the last 15 years.
- The Patriots have won 17 Division Titles in franchise history, 14 in the Kraft Era.
The Kraft Family Era (1994-present):
Joined the Halas family as the quickest ownership group to 250 wins (358 games) Week 16 at NY Jets with the 17-16 win.
This is the 21st season of Patriots ownership by the Kraft family. Since Robert Kraft bought the team in 1994 they:
- Have the most Super Bowl wins, 3.
- Have the most regular season wins, 229.
- Have the most wins including playoffs, 250.
- Have the most conference titles, 6.
- Have the most division titles, 14.
- Have the most playoff wins, 21
- Have played the most playoff games, 33.
- Are tied for the most playoff seasons, 16.
- The fewest head coaches within the division, 3.
- Have drafted the most Pro Bowl players, 20.
From 1960 to 1993 the New England/Boston Patriots won a total of 225 games.
In the Belichick Era (2000-present):
- The Patriots are the top seed in the AFC for the fifth time since 2003. They were also the #1 seed in 2007, 2010 and 2011.
- With a win Sunday the Patriots will be 8-0 at home for the 7th time in franchise history. They also were 8-0 in 2003, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2013. Denver and Green Bay are the other undefeated teams at home.
- Since 2000 New England has the NFL’s best road record at 77-42.
- In Belichick’s 15 seasons Patriots are 95-24 in the second half of the season. They have gone 8-0 four times and 7-1 three times.
- Since 2000 New England is 54-9 in December games.
- They are 69-24 vs. AFC East since 2000.
- Since 2001 the Patriots are 83-21 in games played on or after Thanksgiving that’s the best record in the NFL.
- Since 2003 the Patriots have the NFL’s best record at 150-41.
- Have won 16 consecutive regular season home games. Their last loss at home was in Week 15 2012 vs. San Francisco.
- Have won 17 consecutive home games vs. AFC East opponents. The last loss was to an AFC East team at home was in Week 11 2008 vs. NY Jets.
- Have won 35 consecutive home games vs. AFC opponents. Last loss to an AFC team at home was Week 13 2008 vs. Pittsburgh.
- Have 14 consecutive seasons without a losing record.
- Have had 9 first round byes under Belichick since 2001 including 5 in a row.
- With a win Sunday will be the first head coach to have 13 or more wins in five seasons.
- First team to twice score 3 TD’s in less than a minute Week 8, 2014 vs. Chicago and Week 12, 2012 at NY Jets.
Against the Bills:
- This is the second year in a row the Patriots have finished the season at home against the Bills and 4th time in the last 7 years.
- New England has beaten Buffalo the last 13 times at home.
- The Patriots are 35-19 all time vs. Buffalo at home, they are 12-0 at Gillette Stadium, they were 17-14 at Foxboro Stadium and 6-5 in Boston venues.
- New England’s largest margin of victory in the series is 46 points set in 2007.
- The Patriots have scored 30 or more points against the Bills in 8 of the last 9 games.
- In Week 6 win at Buffalo Tom Brady threw 4 TD passes and upped his record to 19-1 when throwing 4 or more TD passes in a game.
- The Patriots had three recievers finish with over 90 yards Week 6 at Buffalo. Brandon LaFell (97), Rob Gronkowski (94) and Julian Edelman (91) all reached the mark.
- Brian Tyms had his first NFL TD a 43-yard pass from Tom Brady Week 6 at Buffalo, it’s his only catch this season.
- Rob Ninkovich had his first career 3-sack game Week 6 at Buffalo.
Last Week vs. the Jets:
- Upped their record at MetLife Stadium to 3-2 and now have a 27-28 road record all-time vs. the Jets including playoffs.
- Now lead the series overall vs. the Jets 58-53-1.
- With the win Bill Belichick is now 4th all-time with 230 wins passing Hall of Famer Curly Lambeau.
- Vince Wilfork blocked the team’s fifth kick of the year (4 FG, 1 punt).
- The five blocks in all are second most in team history and 1 behind the record set in 1975. The four blocked field goals are a new team record for most blocked FGA’s in a season.
- Jamie Collins had his second INT of the season. It was his third career INT including playoffs.
- Shane Vereen’s 12-yard catch in the second quarter to set a career high for receiving yards with 433 receiving yards. He had 427 receiving yards last season.
- Chris White returned after being out a few weeks with an injury.
- Chandler Jones made his first start since his returning last week.
- Alan Branch got his first Patriots start.
- New England had 231 total yards to New York’s 307.
- Patriots had 5 penalties vs. the Jets for 38 yards.
- Six of the Jets top 10 yardage plays allowed by the Patriots were passing plays the longest being 26 yards (Geno Smith to John Conner). Their longest rush against the defense was 16 yards by Chris Ivory.
- Three of the top 10 yardage plays for the Patriots were run plays the longest being the 17-yard run by Brandon Bolden. The longest pass play to Brandon LaFell for 14 yards.
In the 2014 Season:
- With Denver’s loss at Cincinnati on Monday night the Patriots clinched the top seed in the AFC and will have home field advantage through the playoffs.
- It is their fifth consecutive first round bye they are the first team to do so.
- Since the 12-team playoff format started in 1990 they have the most first round byes (10).
- Lead NFL with most red zone points (329) having converted on 58 of 65 red zone opportunities (39 TD’s; 19 FG).
- Have 14 consecutive winning seasons by far the most currently in the NFL.
- 12th consecutive season with at least 10 wins.
- Have won 12 games for the 9th time in team history including the last five seasons.
- In last five games the Patriots have outscored their opponent 64-12 in the second half.
- The last second half TD allowed by the defense was Week 11 at Indianapolis.
- They have scored 40 or more points five times this season tying the franchise record set in 2012.
- New England has 115 penalties this season in 15 games and has been penalized 1,025 yards. This eclipses the Patriots totals for 2013 when they had 69 penalties and lost 625 yards in 16 weeks.
- New England is PLUS 11 in turnover differential they are 3rd in the NFL. They have 16 INT and have recovered 8 fumbles while they have thrown 9 INT’s and lost 4 fumbles.
- The Patriots are 1st in points scored averaging 30.6 points per game and are 8th in points allowed with 19.7 points per game.
- Had QB Tom Brady, TE Rob Gronkowski, K Stephen Gostkowski, CB Darrelle Revis and ST Matthew Slater named to the 2014 Pro Bowl.
Patriots Staff Notes
This is the link to head coach Bill Belichick’s Tuesday press conference on the Bills.
Bill Belichick notes:
- He is 26-4 vs. Buffalo. Belichick was 0-1 against the Bills as the head coach of the Cleveland Browns.
- Overall in his NFL career Belichick is 211-107 in his 20th NFL season as a head coach. He is 173-63 with New England and 36-44 with Cleveland. He is 19-9 in the playoffs, 18-8 as head coach of the Patriots in the post season. When you combine his regular season and post season records he is 230-117.
- Belichick’s 230 wins are good for 4th all-time. Passed Curly Lambeau (229) for 4th all-time Week 16 at NYJets with a 17-16 win.
- Is tied with Curly Lambeau for the second most consecutive winning seasons as a head coach with 14. Tom Landry is first with 20.
- He has won 5 conference titles; he needs one more to tied Don Shula’s record of 6.
- He is the first head coach to have had 4 teams that scored at least 500 points in a season.
- Belichick is one of five head coaches in NFL history whose father (Steve Belichick) played in the league. The others are former Kansas City head coach Todd Haley (Dick Haley), former San Francisco head coach Mike Nolan (Dick Nolan), former Cincinnati head coach David Shula (Don Shula) and former NY Jets head coach Joe Walton (Frank Walton).
- Belichick is one of just four coaches to win three Super Bowls, joining Chuck Noll (4), Joe Gibbs (3) and Bill Walsh (3). Those men are all in the Hall of Fame.
- He is the only coach in NFL history to win three championship titles in four seasons.
- No coach either as the head coach or an assistant has appeared in more Super Bowls than Belichick who has been to 8 (five as a head coach).
- With 12 Division Titles has the most of any head coach since the merger.
- He is the only coach in NFL history to have led his team to 10+ wins in 12 consecutive seasons.
- Has twelve 11-win seasons (11 with New England) in his career, only Don Shula (13) has more.
- Has nine 12-win seasons.in his career.
- He has been NFL Coach of the Year three times he and Chuck Knox are the only three time winners, while Don Shula won four times.
Other Staff/Personnel notes:
- Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia attended Vernon-Verona-Sherrill HS in Sherrill, N.Y., before going on to serve as a graduate assistant at Syracuse from 2001-03.
- Tight ends coach Brian Daboll is a Buffalo native and attended St. Francis (Buffalo) High School before graduating from the University of Rochester in 1997.
- Running backs coach Ivan Fears coached wide receivers at Syracuse University from 1980-90.
Patriots Possible Starters
- LT: Solder
- LG: Connolly
- C: Stork
- RG: Wendell
- RT: Vollmer
- TE: Gronkowski
- WR: LaFell
- WR: Amendola
- QB: Brady
- RB: Bolden
- RB: Devlin
- DE: Ninkovich
- DT: Wilfork
- DT: Chr. Jones
- DT: Branch
- DE: Cha. Jones
- LB: Collins
- LB: Hightower
- LCB: Revis
- RCB: Browner
- S: Chung
- S: McCourty
Patriots Players Notes
Tom Brady Notes:
- This is his 15th NFL season he is 23-2 vs. the Bills. in his career. The 23 wins are second most by one QB vs. one team. Brett Favre had 26 wins vs. Detroit.
- In his last game against the Bills (at Buffalo Week 6) Brady was 27/37 for 361 yards, 4 TD’s, 0 INT’s and 2 sacks.
- Has a 48-7 career record in December games best among quarterbacks with at least 20 starts. Roger Staubach is 2nd at 17-3.
- Overall he is 160-46 as a starting QB and is 18-8 in the playoffs for an overall record of 178-55. He is a 10 time Pro Bowl QB; 3 time All-Pro selection; two time NFL MVP and has won 3 Super Bowls while twice being named the games MVP. He is also listed as the 21st Greatest Player in the History of the NFL according to the NFL Network.
- Has won 12 Division Titles the most of any quarterback.
- Had his streak of multiple TD pass games for 10 consecutive games snapped Week 11 at NY Jets. In the streak he had thrown 28 TD passes in 10 games.
- It was the second streak in his career of at least 10-games with 2 or more TD passes.
- 392 TD passes in his career makes him 5th in NFL history 3 behind Drew Brees.
- 160 career wins are 3rd all-time behind only Brett Favre and Peyton Manning.
- He has thrown for 2 or more TD’s in 125 games; the team’s record is 107-18.
- Recorded his 7th season with 4,000 or more passing yards.
- Has put up 50+ points on an opponent 7 times all since 2007 and now has the most 50+ point games for a quarterback in NFL history. Len Dawson is 2nd with six games of 50+ points.
- Named to the 2014 Pro Bowl.
Rob Gronkowski notes:
- Leads team in TD’s with 12 and receiving yards with 1,124 on 82 catches (2nd on team).
- Has caught a pass in 65 consecutive games it’s the 4th longest streak currently for a tight end.
- He is the 9th tight end in NFL history to have at least two seasons with 1,000 or more receiving yards.
- Became 9th Patriots player with 300 or more career receptions.
- First TE in NFL history to have four seasons with 10 or more TD catches when he grabbed a 14-yard Tom Brady pass at San Diego Week 14. He was equaled by San Diego TE Antonio Gates Week 15 vs. Denver.
- Had 3 catches for 96 yards and 1 TD vs. Miami Week 15.
- Had 8 catches for 87 yards and 1 TD Week 14 at San Diego.
- Had 7 catches for 98 yards at Green Bay Week 13.
- Had 9 catches for 105 yards and 1 TD Week 9 vs. Denver.
- Had 9 catches for 149-yards and 3 TD’s vs. Chicago Week 8.
- Had 6 catches for 100-yards and 1 TD vs. Cincinnati Week 5.
- Named to the 2014 Pro Bowl.
Julian Edelman notes:
- Leads team in receiving with 92 catches and is 2nd with 972 receiving yards.
- Inactive Week 16 at NYJets due to a concussion.
- Had 8 catches for 141 yards an 1 TD Week 14 at San Diego it was his 5th career 100-yard game.
- Had career long 69-yard TD catch at San Diego in Week 14.
- Now has 5 career games with 10 or more catches after an 11-catch game Week 12 vs. Detroit (11 catches, 89 yards).
- Named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week for Week 9.
- Had 9 catches for 89 yards and 1 TD and an 84-yard punt return for a TD Week 9 vs. Denver for 173 total yards.
- Punt return TD vs. Denver Week 9 was his 13th punt return of 30+ yards (2nd in franchise history) and his 4th for a TD (new team record).
- Had 9 catches for 91 yards, 1 carry for 10 yards and 3 punt returns for 12 yards for 113 total yards Week 6 at Buffalo.
- Had 156 total yards Week 2 at Minnesota (81 receiving, 9 rushing and 66 on punt returns).
- Opened the season with a 95 receiving yards at Miami and added 81 yards receiving at Minnesota Week 2.
Jonas Gray notes:
- Leads team in rushing TD’s (5) and rushing yards (412).
- Had 62 yards on 11 carries, all in the 2nd half Week 15 vs. Miami.
- DNP vs. Detroit Week 12 after missing a Friday morning meeting. Returned to action Week 13 at Green Bay (2 snaps, 1 carry for 4 yards).
- Named AFC Offensive Player of the Week for Week 11.
- In Week 11 at Indianapolis had 37 carries for 201 yards and 4 TD’s.
- Gray set a franchise record with 4 TD’s Week 11 at Indianapolis. Breaking the record shared by Corey Dillon (vs. Detroit 2006), Curtis Martin (vs. Miami 1996), Mosi Tatupu (at LA Rams, 1993), Tony Collins (vs. NY Jets 1983) and Sam “Bam” Cunningham (at Buffalo, 1974) who all had 3 rushing TD’s in a regular season game.
- Gray’s 201 yards rushing (Week 11 at Indianapolis) are third most in team history behind Jim Nance (208, 1966 vs. Oakland) and Tony Collins (212, 1983 vs. NY Jets).
- Had 86 yards on 17 carries in his second NFL game Week 8 vs. Chicago.
Tim Wright notes:
- Had 5 catches for 36 yards including 2 for TD’s vs. Detroit Week 12.
- Had 7 catches for 61-yards and a TD vs. Chicago Week 8.
- Has TD catches in 4 of the last 6 games Week 5 vs. Cincinnati, Week 6 at Buffalo, Week 8 vs. Chicago and Week 11 at Indianapolis.
Brandon LaFell notes:
- Has career high’s in receptions (70), yards (883) and TD’s (7).
- Had 5 catches for 38 yards and 2 TD’s Week 13 at Green Bay. It was his second 2 TD game of the year and third of his career.
- Had 9 catches for a team high 98 yards Week 12 vs. Detroit.
- Had 6 catches for 53 yards and 1 TD Week 9 vs. Denver.
- Had 11 catches for 124 yards (both career highs) and 1 TD vs. Chicago Week 8.
- Had 4 catches for 97 yards and 2 TD’s at Buffalo Week 6 it was his 2nd two TD game of his career. It was the last time Buffalo allowed 2 TD’s to one receiver in a game.
Shane Vereen notes:
- Set new career high for receiving yards with 433 receiving yards Week 16 at NY Jets.
- Has 390 rushing yards for the season, second on the team.
- Caught his 48th pass of the season to set a new career high vs. Miami Week 15.
- Became 4th Patriots player with 2 rushing TD’s in a game this season Week 15 vs. Miami.
- Had 43 rushing yards on 11 carries and 5 catches for 71 yards and 2 TD’s for 114 total yards from scrimmage Week 7 vs. New York.
- Had 90 rushing yards on 9 carries and 3 catches for 18 receiving yards for 108 yards from scrimmage Week 5 vs. Cincinnati.
- Set franchise record with receptions (12) and receiving yards (153) by a running back in a single-game Week 14 (2013) vs. Cleveland.
- Became just fourth NFL running back to post 150 receiving yards in a single-game in the last 10 seasons.
LeGarrette Blount notes:
- Since returning to Foxboro has 50 carries for 219 yards and 3 TD’s.
- Inactive Week 16 at NYJets with a shoulder injury.
- Ran for 78 yards and 2 TD’s on 12 carries in his Patriots return vs. Detroit Week 12. The 2 TD game was the 4th of his career and 2nd as a Patriot.
- Returns to Foxboro after being released by Pittsburgh after Week 11. Signed a two-year deal at veteran minimums.
- Had 266 yards rushing with 2 TD’s on 65 carries for the Steelers this year. Also caught 6 passes for 36 yards.
Stephen Gostkowski notes:
- Holds franchise record for most points (1,170). He set the record previously held by Adam Vinatieri on a 35-yard 3rd quarter field goal Week 15 vs. Miami.
- Had a 15-point game vs. Chicago Week 8 with 3 field goals and 6 XPT’s.
- Missed his first field goal attempt of 2014 in first quarter, Week 6 at Buffalo.
- Had a 19-point game vs. Cincinnati Week 5 with 5 field goals and 4 XPT’s. The five field goals were a new career high.
- Missed on a 4th quarter field goal for first time in 34 attempts Week 13 at Green Bay.
- Has not missed an extra point since Week 17 2006 at Tennessee in his rookie season.
- Lead NFL in scoring in both 2012 and 2013.
- Has scored at least 1 point in 119 consecutive games a franchise record.
- Has team record of 13 career field goals of 50+ yards.
- Named to the 2014 Pro Bowl.
Vince Wilfork notes:
- Had 9 tackles (4 solo) and blocked a field goal attempt Week 16 at NYJets.
- Had a pass defensed vs. Miami Week 15.
- Was in on 6 tackles (2 solo) Week 6 at Buffalo.
- Had his 3rd career INT vs. Oakland Week 3. He is the first Patriots lineman to have 3 career INT’s.
- Has 7 fumbles recoveries since 2010 the second most in the NFL in that span behind teammate Rob Ninkovich.
Darrelle Revis notes:
- Leads team with 14 passes defensed.
- Had 4 passes defensed Week 12 vs. Detroit.
- Has 23 career INT’s and is one of the top shutdown corners in the NFL.
- Got his 2nd INT of the year at the end of half Week 8 vs. Chicago.
- Had his first forced fumble of the year Week 5 vs. Cincinnati.
- In Patriots debut Week 1 at Miami had 1 tackles, 2 passes defensed and recovered a fumble.
- Had his first Patriots INT Week 2 at Minnesota against Matt Cassel. Also had 3 tackles and 1 pass defensed.
- Named to the 2014 Pro Bowl.
Rob Ninkovich notes:
- Leads team with 8 sacks and has 53 tackles (44 solo) for 5th on the team.
- Week 15 vs. Miami recorded his 8th sack of the season for the third year in a row. He’s first Patriots player do that since Hall of Famer Andre Tippett did it 1985-87.
- Had 5 tackles (5 solo), 1 sack, 2 tackles for loss and 1 QB hit Week 14 at San Diego.
- Had 5 tackles (4 solo), a sack, a tackle for loss and 2 QB hits Week 11 at Indianapolis.
- Had 3 tackles (1 solo), 1 INT and 1 pass defensed vs. Denver Week 9.
- Had his 13th career fumble recovery Week 8 vs. Chicago. The 13-fumble recoveries are the most in the NFL since 2010.
- The TD return was the second of his career. He had an INT return for TD in 2011 Week 9 at NY Jets.
- Week 6 at Buffalo had 6 tackles (4 solo) and 3 sacks. It was his first career 3-sack day.
- Week 2 at Minnesota had 3 tackles, 1 sack, 1 tackle for loss and 2 QB hits.
Dont’a Hightower notes:
- Second on team in tackles with 92 (69 solo) and tied for second with 6 sacks.
- Had 9 tackles (3 solo), 1 sack, 1 tackle for loss an 1 QB hit Week 16 at NYJets.
- Had 10 tackles (4 solo), 1 sack, 3 tackles for loss and 1 QB hit Week 13 at Green Bay.
- Had 8 tackles (5 solo) and a QB hit Week 12 vs. Detroit.
- Had 6 tackles (3 solo), 2 QB hits and 1 pass defensed Week 11 at Indianapolis.
- Had 10 tackles (4 solo) vs. Chicago Week 8.
- Returned after a 2 week absence and had 13 tackles (9 solo), 1 sack, 1 tackle for loss and 1 QB hit Week 7 vs. the Jets.
- Didn’t play Week 5 vs. Cincinnati, Week 6 at Buffalo and Week 14 at San Diego due to a knee injury.
- His 5 sacks is a new career high.
- Along with Chandler Jones he led team with 8 tackles and 2 sacks Week 2 at Minnesota. He also had 2 tackles for loss, 2 QB hits and 1 pass defensed.
- Had his first career 2-sack game Week 2 at Minnesota.
Chandler Jones notes:
- Second on team with 6 sacks.
- Returned Week 15 vs. Miami from a hip injury suffered Week 7 vs. NY Jets. He had 7 tackles (4 solo), 1.5 sacks, 2 QB hits and 1 forced fumble.
- Scored his 2nd NFL TD Week 2 at Minnesota when he blocked a field goal attempt and returned it 58-yards. His first NFL TD was Week 16, 2013 at Baltimore on a fumble recovery. It was his second blocked field goal attempt (2013 Week 8 vs. Miami).
- Had the 5th blocked field goal returned for a TD in Patriots history Week 2 at Minnesota, first since 2010 when Patrick Chung returned one at Miami.
- Now has 5 career 2-sack games with a pair at Minnesota in Week 2.
- Along with Dont’a Hightower he led team with 8 tackles and 2 sacks Week 2 at Minnesota. He also had 3 tackles for loss, 3 QB hits, the blocked field goal attempt and return for TD.
Jamie Collins notes:
- Leads team with 104 tackles (71 solo), forced fumbles (3) and is tied in INT’s (2).
- Had 11 tackles (6 solo), 1 tackle for loss, 1 INT and 1 pass defensed Week 16 at NYJets.
- Had his first career 2-sack game Week 14 at San Diego and led team with 9 tackles (8 solo). Also had 3 tackles for loss and 2 QB hits.
- Led team in tackles Week 8 vs. Chicago with 11 (6 solo), Week 9 vs. Denver with 11 (10 solo), Week 11 at Indianapolis with 8 (5 solo) and Week 13 at Green Bay with 13 (7 solo).
- Had 13 tackles (7 solo), 1 sack and his 3rd forced fumble of the season at Green Bay Week 13.
- Had two tackles for loss and forced his second fumble of the year Week 11 at Indianapolis.
- Had 13 tackles (7 solo) Week 7 vs. NY Jets.
- Had 4 tackles (2 solo) and an INT Week 6 at Buffalo. It was his first NFL INT.
- Has recovered a fumble and forced 2 fumbles in 2014.
Akeem Ayers notes:
- Had a big INT Week 14 at San Diego. It was the lone Chargers turnover.
- Had 3 tackles (3 solo), 1 sack, 1 QB hit and 1 tackle for loss vs. Detroit Week 12.
- Had 5 tackles (2 solo), 1 sack, 1 QB hit and 1 tackle for loss Week 8 vs. Chicago.
- Had 3 tackles (3 solo), 1 sack, 1 QB hit and 1 tackle for loss Week 9 vs. Denver.
Kyle Arrington notes:
- Was inactive Week 16 at NYJets with a hamstring injury.
- Had his second career blocked field goal return for a TD Week 15 vs. Miami.
- Had his 4th career TD (2 on blocked FGA, 2 on INT’s) Week 15 vs. Miami.
- Has a sack, 4 passes defensed and 2 forced fumbles this season.
General Team news:
Roster moves/transactions this week:
- Released CB Dax Swanson from the practice squad.
- Signed DE/OLB Cam Henderson to the practice squad.
Patriots team captains for 2014:
- QB Tom Brady
- G/C Dan Connolly
- WR Matthew Slater (special teams)
- DT Vince Wilfork
- LB Jerod Mayo (IR)
- S Devin McCourty (replaces Mayo)
Former Bills on the Patriots:
- LB Chris White
- LS Danny Aiken
- DT Alan Branch
Players with New England roots:
Players with New York roots:
- TE Rob Gronkowski – Williamsville NY
- DE Chandler Jones – Rochester NY
Players from New England based colleges and universities:
- RB James Develin – Brown
Players from New York based colleges and universities:
- DE Chandler Jones – Syracuse
The Patriots have 6 retired numbers:
- 20 – Gino Cappelletti
- 40 – Mike Haynes
- 73 – John Hannah
- 78 – Bruce Armstrong
- 79 – Jim Lee Hunt
- 89 – Bob Dee
Bills Team Notes
- Buffalo’s all-time record is 379-439-8 they are 14-15 in the post season with their last post season appearance coming in 1999 when they lost to Tennessee in the AFC Wild Card game, best known as the “Music City Miracle”.
- They last played for a conference championship in 1993 when they beat Kansas City in the AFC Title game, 30-13. They then went on to lose to Dallas in Super Bowl XXVIII. They have never won a Super Bowl title in four appearances.
- The Bills franchise started in 1960 in the AFL and they won two AFL Championships in 1964 and 1965.
- Terry Pagula, who also owns the Buffalo Sabres of the NHL, took over as the new owner in Buffalo Week 6. It’s the first time in franchise history in which the Wilson Family does not own the team.
- Since 2001 the Bills are 27-54 vs. the AFC East. They are the only team who hasn’t won the division in that time span.
Against the Patriots:
- Most points they’ve allowed this year (37), most TD’s (4) and most passing yards (346) all came Week 6 vs. New England.
- The Bills have lost the season series to the Patriots 11 times in the last 14 seasons.
- They are trying to avoid their third sweep in a row and 14th consecutive road loss to New England. Buffalo has been swept by New England 23 times in the season series.
- Buffalo is the only division team to have never won at Gillette Stadium they come in 0-12.
- The Bills are 19-35 as the road team in the series.
- Bills have lost 26 of the last 29 games vs. Patriots dating back to 2000.
- The largest margin of victory for the Bills in the series is 35 points set in 1970.
- They have 5 of their last 6 first round draft picks still on the roster.
- Buffalo has 6 players with the surname of Williams, 2 with the surname of Brown as well as a Wood and a Woods.
- 4th in NFL in yards allowed per game (315.7).
- 3rd in NFL in passing yards allowed (209.9)
- 1st in NFL in 3rd down conversions allowed by defense (33.2%).
- Lead the NFL in sacks (50).
- Buffalo actually has a missed/failed extra point attempt this year with Dan carpenter hit the left upright at NY Jets Week 8.
- With a win Sunday they will win 9 games for first time since 2004 and have won 4 road games for first time since 2008.
- Buffalo has 45 penalties this season in five weeks and has been penalized 372 yards.
- Bills are tied for first in turnover differential (PLUS 6) with the Patriots, Packers and Chargers.
- Bills have been called for 119 penalties in 15 games and have lost 987 yards.
- Buffalo is PLUS 8 in turnover differential. They have 19 INT and have recovered 11 fumbles while they have thrown 13 INT’s and lost 9 fumbles.
- The Bills are 18th in points scored averaging 21.7 points per game and are 5th in points allowed with 18.6 points per game.
Bills Staff Notes
This is what Buffalo Bills head coach Doug Marrone had to say to the New England media about the match up.
Doug Marrone notes:
- He is in his 2nd season as a NFL head coach all with the Bills and he has a record of 14-17.
- He is 0-3 vs. New England.
- He is the 16th head coach in Buffalo Bills history.
- Was head coach for Syracuse University for four seasons (2009-12) and compiled a 25-25 record for the Orange. He was also previously the offensive coordinator for the New Orleans Saints (2006-08) and offensive line coach for the New York Jets (2002-05) and was the offensive line coach at Coast Guard in 1993 and at Northeastern in 1994.
Other Staff/Personnel notes:
- Jim Schwartz is the defensive coordinator after serving the last five seasons as the head coach of the Detroit Lions (2009-13). He was also defensive coordinator for the Tennessee Titans from 2001-08.
- Nathaniel Hackett returns for his second season as the Bills offensive coordinator. He was Marrone’s offensive coordinator for two seasons at Syracuse and 1 year he was the quarterbacks coach for the Orange.
- Linebackers coach Pepper Johnson served in several defensive coaching roles for the Patriots from 2000-13. Notably, he was the defensive line coach from 2004-11 and the linebackers coach from 2012-13.
- Bills Head Strength and Conditioning Coach Eric Ciano and Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach Hal Luther both played football at Springfield College.
- Strength and Conditioning Assistant Dan Liburd also spent time at Springfield as a graduate associate and graduated from Boston University in 2006.
Bills Possible Starters
- LT: Glenn
- LG: Urbik
- C: Wood
- RG: Pears
- RT: Henderson
- TE: Chandler
- WR: Watkins
- WR: Woods
- QB: Orton
- RB: Spiller
- RB: M. Gray
- DE: M. Williams
- DT: K. Williams
- DT: Dareus
- DE: Hughes
- LB: P. Brown
- LB: Bradham
- LB: Spikes
- LCB: Graham
- RCB: Gilmore
- S: Searcy
- S: A. Williams
Bills Players Notes
Kyle Orton notes:
- Drafted in the 4th round of the 2005 NFL Draft by Chicago out Purdue.
- He is in his 10th NFL season and has a 41-40 career record with Chicago (21-12), Denver (12-21), Kansas City (2-1), Dallas (0-1) and Buffalo (6-5). He has never appeared in the playoffs.
- He is 1-1 vs. New England in his career. In 2009 he beat the Patriots in Denver 20-17.
- Made first start of 2014 last week at Detroit in a 17-14 win. He was 30 of 43 for 308 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT.
- Needs 29 completions for the 5th 300 completion season in franchise history.
- Threw 100th career TD pass at Oakland Week 16.
- Needs 158 passing yards for 3,000.
- Has passed for 300 yards three times this season.
- He is the 5th quarterback since 1960 to have passed for 300+ yards in a game for five different teams.
Fred Jackson notes:
- Leads team in rushing with 467 yards and 2 TD’s on 123 carries.
- Has 65 catches for 497 yards and 1 TD.
- His 65 catches are tops on the team.
- Has 30 TD’s in his career.
- Third in Bills history in 100-yard rushing games (15) and rushing yards (5,588) behind O.J. Simpson (41/10,183) and Thurman Thomas (46/11,938).
C.J. Spiller notes:
- Third on team in rushing with 283 yards on 73 carries.
- Has 18 catches for 123 yards and 1 TD
- Also has a 102-yard KOR for a TD. It was the 3rd longest in Bills history.
- Has highest yards per carry in Bills history (4.97).
- Has Bills last 100-yard rushing game Week 17, 2013 at New England.
Sammy Watkins notes:
- Bills first round pick in 2014 NFL Draft out of Georgia.
- Needs 75 receiving yards for 1,000 yards as a rookie.
- Has four 100-yard receiving games this season.
- Has 62 catches (2nd on team) for team leading 925 yards and 6 TD’s.
- Has 4th most receiving yards by a rookie this season.
- Second on team in scoring with 36 points.
Robert Woods notes:
- Has 61 catches for 660 yards and 4 TD’s.
- His totals rank him 3rd in NFL among second year receivers.
- Is third on team in catches and 2nd in receiving yards and TD’s.
- Third on team in scoring with 26 points.
Brandon Spikes notes:
- First season as a Bill after 4 seasons as a Patriot.
- Drafted by New England out of Florida in 2nd Round of the 2010 NFL Draft.
- Had 8 tackles in his first career game vs. New England Week 6.
- Has started 10 of 15 games.
- Has 54 tackles (32 solo), 5 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble and 3 passes defensed.
Mario Williams notes:
- Leads team with 13.5 sacks.
- Has 42 tackles (36 solo).
- 3rd in tackles in the NFL since 2006 (448).
- Top 4 in sacks in NFL (90) since 2006.
Kyle Williams notes:
- Has registered 5.5 sacks and 1 INT this year
- The defensive end also has 3 passes defensed.
- Has 41 tackles (29 solo)
Marcell Dareus notes:
- Has 10 sacks second on the team.
- Has 1 forced fumble and 48 tackles (36 solo).
Aaron Williams notes:
- Had career high 14 tackles vs. San Diego Week 3.
- Has 72 tackles, 1 INT and 4 passes defensed this season.
- Moved from CB to S for 2014.
- Was 2nd on team in tackles (80) in 2013.
Buffalo’s team captains for 2014 are:
Former Patriots on the Bills:
Players with New England roots:
Players from New England based colleges and universities:
- WR Marcus Easley – UConn
- CB Corey Graham – New Hampshire
- LB Ikponmwosa Igbinosun (practice squad) – Southern Connecticut State
The Bills have one retired number:
12 – Jim Kelley
Up next: AFC Divisional Game vs. TBD
Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxboro MA
TV Network: CBS