New England Patriots

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - OCTOBER 03: Mac Jones #10 of the New England Patriots calls a play against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first quarter in the game at Gillette Stadium on October 03, 2021 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

If only the Patriots could have avoided a mistake here and there, they could have knocked off the defending Super Bowl champions. But as Tom Brady himself said after the game, these things often come down to just a few plays.

It was a valiant effort for the Patriots on the whole, coming up just short to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in a 19-17 loss that turned out to be closer than many were expecting in Tom Brady’s return to Foxborough. The Pats got some excellent efforts from certain players on both sides of the ball, but others committed untimely errors that marred what could go down as the team’s most respectable performances of the year.

Let’s get into who (and what) was “up” and “down” in the Patriots’ loss to the Bucs…

Next Ups & Downs come after the Patriots play the Houston Texans in Week 5.

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Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff and follow him on Instagram @mattydsays. You can also email him at