Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has seen a lot of things over the course of his coaching career, but Sunday brought something new.
The Patriots were missing four starting offensive linemen and Belichick said after their 25-22 win over the Texans that the only other time he could think of that happening was when the league was using replacement players during the 1987 players strike. Belichick added, via Zack Cox of NESN, that “you can’t even count that” because of the circumstances.
Center David Andrews was flanked by left tackleJustin Herron, left guard James Ferentz, right guard Ted Karras, and right tackle Yodny Cajuste on the makeshift line and the group held up well. Quarterback Mac Jones was sacked once and hit four times while the team ran for 126 yards.
“I think the offensive line did a great job and I think it all starts with them,” Jones said, via WEEI.com. “They were doubted all week and there’s this and that, and all the noise around that. They came out and they played really hard and they played together and I think I only got hit once all game (Houston was credited with four QB hits). Shout-out to those guys and they were a big reason why it happened.”
The Patriots won’t have right tackle Trent Brown back next week because he’s on injured reserve. Left tackle Isaiah Wynn and left guard Michael Onwenu are on the COVID-19 reserve list and right guard Shaq Mason has a quad injury.