There was a palpable frustration among the New England Patriots on Sunday night. The team is in a historically challenging 0-2 hole after falling to the Miami Dolphins at home on “Sunday Night Football,” and there’s at least one clear common thread tying the losses together: bad starts.
No one seemed more determined to correct the issues plaguing the Patriots than linebacker Matthew Judon, who began his postgame press conference with a lengthy comment on the team and the state of their season. He projected confidence and did his best to stop certain questions before they were asked. He could see all those dark clouds approaching in the press room.
“Before we get into the questions, we’re going to confuse everybody, we’re going to talk from a place of praise, we’re going to talk from a place of gratitude,” Judon said. “We get to play this game. I know we lost, I know it looks bad, you start [0-2]. But this is not a bad team, so don’t get to asking those types of questions. We’re going to speak matter-of-fact. But I don’t think we’re about to hang our head up here, or in the locker room.
“So, when we come back on Monday and we watch this film, we’re going to get our corrections corrected. Then we come back on Wednesday, it’s not going to be ‘How are y’all going to pull it together?’ We already know how.”
The “how” in question is as simple as starting games better. The Patriots have been outscored 19-0 in the first quarter through two games. Certainly not part of the recipe for winning.
Chief among the reasons for the bad starts have been turnovers. The offense is up to three first-quarter giveaways in two weeks, the latest of which got dynamic rookie wide receiver Demario Douglas benched on offense for the rest of the game.
The defense isn’t off the hook for Sunday night, though. They allowed 10 points on drives of 81 and 73 yards over Miami’s first two possessions. So, there was plenty of frustration to go around for the Patriots’ rocky starts to these games.
Here are the comments from Patriots players that stood out the most…