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Patriots slog through hard-fought win in Jacksonville

New England Patriots v Jacksonville Jaguars Getty Images

The Patriots don’t appear to be peaking as they head toward the playoffs. But after a week in which they lost a great game, they’ll take a win in an ugly game.

That’s exactly what New England got on Sunday against the Jaguars, falling behind early but then coming back to win, as the Patriots managed to escape with a victory in a much tougher game than anyone expected the Jaguars to give them.

New England’s suspect secondary had a rough time against Jaguars quarterback Chad Henne in the early going, as Henne led two scoring drives and the Jaguars jumped out to a 10-0 lead. But eventually the Patriots’ defense began to settle down, and in the second half the Jaguars couldn’t do much offensively.

The Patriots’ offense didn’t make many big plays, but they did have five different sustained scoring drives, each of them covering at least nine plays and at least 52 yards. Short passes from Tom Brady and runs from Stevan Ridley were enough.

Still, the Patriots had a hard time putting the Jaguars away: With less than five minutes remaining and New England leading 23-16, the Jaguars had a huge opportunity to tie the game, with the ball inside the 1-yard line. But tight end Zach Potter false started to move the Jaguars back five yards, and on the next play Henne was sacked, and on the play after that Patrick Chung intercepted Henne, and that stopped that opportunity. Jacksonville would then get the ball back one more time and again threaten to send the game into overtime, but the Jaguars again fell short again as Henne was intercepted in the end zone on the last play of the game.

So the Patriots got the win they needed to improve to 11-4, on a day they played just well enough to beat the 2-13 Jaguars. They didn’t play well enough on Sunday to beat a playoff team.

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16 Responses to “Patriots slog through hard-fought win in Jacksonville”
  1. jtchernak says: Dec 23, 2012 4:09 PM

    Jags were hooking the whole d line around the neck yet no calls. You fail to mention no talib spikes or dennard and mccourty had to play corner. Disgusting performance though

  2. captainvilfo says: Dec 23, 2012 4:11 PM

    I’ll take a win with an offense w/o the best TE in the NFL and 3 starters on defense. (Includes Talib who didn’t play at full strength)

  3. tokyosandblaster says: Dec 23, 2012 4:17 PM

    The Patriots sure look like the team to beat.

    lol.

  4. jrebar88 says: Dec 23, 2012 4:36 PM

    More over rated than the Falcons.

  5. binkystevens says: Dec 23, 2012 4:43 PM

    Brady pees sitting down

  6. ynot1381 says: Dec 23, 2012 4:43 PM

    The big plays and stops on defense carried New England during long stretches in the second half. Ugly? Absolutely.

  7. bostonistitletown says: Dec 23, 2012 4:56 PM

    Maybe they would have played better if they had their two starting corners playing in the game or their starting middle linebacker…guess you forgot to mention that part….

  8. patsfan13 says: Dec 23, 2012 4:58 PM

    First of all, why don’t the trolls crawl back under their rocks. No matter where teams are in the standings, they always try to give the Patriots their best shot. An ugly win counts as much as a blow-out.

  9. jrebar88 says: Dec 23, 2012 5:08 PM

    go cry about injuries to someone that cares. every team has injuries.

  10. patsfanvt says: Dec 23, 2012 5:21 PM

    they need gronk in the red zone

  11. devouredbychaos says: Dec 23, 2012 5:26 PM

    They won, that’s all that matters. And to the idiot that said they were more overrated than the Falcons, pleasw explain how. They’ve been the best franchise in the NFL for the past 10 years. Kind of hard to call that overrated kid. At least it didn’t take overtime to beat the Jags..because it took the current number 1 seed in the AFC to do that. And the Texans defense got destroyed by Henne, the Patriots D not so much.

  12. flash1283 says: Dec 23, 2012 6:31 PM

    @devouredbychaos

    He’s a Broncos fan. That would explain the stupid comment.

    He will have a big surprise coming in the playoffs if Denver plays NE.
    Denver’s defense just doesn’t match up well with NE’s offense.

    Last 3 times they played 45,45 and 31 in the last year and a half.
    And they never had an answer for Hernandez, they 31 on them this year without Hernandez.

    Still the same players on that defense, and please it’s a Jack Del Rio defense. What a joke!

  13. CKL says: Dec 23, 2012 8:47 PM

    patsfan13 says:
    Dec 23, 2012 4:58 PM
    First of all, why don’t the trolls crawl back under their rocks. No matter where teams are in the standings, they always try to give the Patriots their best shot. An ugly win counts as much as a blow-out.
    __________________________________

    I know it’s funny isn’t it? Imagine what a sad life they all must lead.

    I’m making no excuses here, it was a terrible uninspired performance (that part makes me angrier than the poor execution especially coming off a loss like they did) and I don’t care WHO was out there. Reminds me of how they played against SF in the last game of the 04 season or against Mia in 05. It drives me crazy but it’s how BB does things when their seed is pretty much locked. He experiments with guys at different positions plays it vanilla and holds out any injured guys. All I can tell from that game is I hope they aren’t limited to any of those DB lineups in the postseason. UGH.

  14. alskdh says: Dec 23, 2012 9:30 PM

    Bradys teammates by allow that kickoff return last week, not only cost him a game, but also his mvp chances.

  15. mgavin78 says: Dec 24, 2012 1:35 AM

    Go jags!!!

  16. wildbillsrodeo says: Dec 24, 2012 10:28 AM

    Gronk will play next week as a tuneup for the playoffs, and come January order will be restored in the AFC

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