Adrian Phillips doesn’t see huge gap between Bills and Patriots

AFC Wild Card Playoffs - New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills
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Safety Adrian Phillips signed a three-year extension with the Patriots, so he’ll be sticking around New England for a while and will be a key part of their push to reclaim the top spot in the AFC East from the Bills.

Buffalo has won two straight division titles and Saturday night’s 47-17 win was more one-sided than even a 30-point margin would suggest. The Bills scored touchdowns the first seven times they had the ball and the clock ran out during their eighth possession. The Bills also didn’t punt during a 33-21 win over the Patriots in Week 16, so there would seem to be a pretty large divide for the Patriots to close ahead of next season.

Phillips was part of the defense that couldn’t come up with a single stop on Saturday, but he doesn’t agree that the Bills are well ahead of their divisional rivals.

“They built up a nice roster, but I don’t think the gap is huge at all,” Phillips said, via Andrew Callahan of the Boston Herald. “They just made the plays that were out there to be made, and we didn’t make ours. . . . I don’t think it’s a gap at all. I will always ride with what we’ve got on this side. I think that we’re better than everybody else. We’ve just gotta go out there and prove it.”

The Patriots were in position to prove themselves at 9-4 coming out of their bye week, but they lost three of their last four regular season games before going down again in Buffalo. That leaves the team with plenty to work on this offseason if they’re going to prove Phillips right about how they stack up with the division champs.

40 responses to “Adrian Phillips doesn’t see huge gap between Bills and Patriots

  1. A noodle arm QB and 12 new starters on defense should solve your problems. 5 years of horrific drafting also doesn’t help.

  2. While I don’t think that performance was reflective of New Englands Defense. I do think Buffalo is clearly better. Pats season is general was good for success long term but Buffalo is already there. It felt like the Bills were playing madden Saturday.

  3. He’s right. Also, the 40 million dollar per year qb thingy is a problem where NE doesn’t have that for another 3-4 years.

    I am not sure why the D quit and didn’t show up, as that’s a whole other question there, but personnel talent, he’s right.

  4. “That leaves the team with plenty to work on this offseason”
    —————————-

    They got little return from the heavy investment on offense in last off-season.

    Patriots have to upgrade BOTH offense and defense. With Brady, Belichick would be able to spend all the resource on defense, but now he can’t and he will be fully exposed next season.

  5. LOL. I’m sure Coach Belichick will be thrilled to hear this kind of talk after they were thumped. Cmon man.

    Just say you think the team was better than they showed down the stretch and then leave it at that. That’s reasonable.

  6. edelmanfanclub says:
    January 18, 2022 at 9:05 am
    While I don’t think that performance was reflective of New Englands Defense. I do think Buffalo is clearly better. Pats season is general was good for success long term but Buffalo is already there. It felt like the Bills were playing madden Saturday.

    —-
    That’s a good take. The Bills window is wide open. The Patriots window is closed while rebuilding.

    They have lots of free agents and probably have to say goodbye to a lot of players and replace them. The real rebuild work will begin now and let’s see what happens.

  7. There’s a huge gap between the Patriots and the Bills now…his name is Josh Allen. The defense couldn’t stop him, let alone anyone else. The Patriots have a lot of issues to address in the offseason, and it’s not just about the Bills.

  8. Overall, I don’t disagree w/ him. The Bills were just on a mission in that game, and hitting on all cylinders. They really seem to be peaking at the right time.

    I expected a much more competitive game, based on how the Pats season went. While the winning streak had a bit of a mirage quality to it because of opposing players who missed those games, NE was competitive all season, and against good teams. It’s a good roster.

    Probably the biggest gap is at QB, but Jones is just a rookie.

    The AFC East has the potential to be an excellent conference top to bottom. All 4 teams are moving in the right direction.

  9. The Pats roster has little talent outside OLine and RB. I think the QB will be good. Not elite, but you can win with him. It has NOTHING to do with how much money they spend on which side of the ball. It’s about their drafting.

    2020: Uche LB 2nd Round. Bust, barely plays. Traded up to get him.
    AJennings LB 3rd Rnd. Bust, never plays
    DAsiasi/DKeene TEs 3rd Rnd. Busts, never play. Had to spend a fortune on FA TEs.
    2019: N’Keal Harry WR 1st Rnd. It’s all been said.
    JWilliams CB 2nd Rnd. Bust. Hardly plays. Traded up to get him.
    CWinovich 3rd Rnd. Bust. Hardly plays.
    YCajuste 3rd Rnd. Bust. Never plays.
    2018: IWynn/SMichel 1rst Rnd. Both belong in the NFL, but not even close to 1rst Rnders.
    DDawson CB 2nd Rnd. Bust, traded for a bag of balls.

    Now, it looks like the 2021 draft could be great and they’ve had a lot of success late in the draft, and with UFAs. Still, the last 4 drafts should be the heart of your team, with a few FAs sprinkled in. How can you win with that track record? Even if Brady was still here, you couldn’t.

  10. billsrthefuture says:
    January 18, 2022 at 10:07 am
    Overall, I don’t disagree w/ him. The Bills were just on a mission in that game, and hitting on all cylinders. They really seem to be peaking at the right time.

    I expected a much more competitive game, based on how the Pats season went. While the winning streak had a bit of a mirage quality to it because of opposing players who missed those games, NE was competitive all season, and against good teams. It’s a good roster.

    Probably the biggest gap is at QB, but Jones is just a rookie.

    The AFC East has the potential to be an excellent conference top to bottom. All 4 teams are moving in the right direction.


    I agree. I think the days everyone would joke about the “AFC Least” are over at least for now.

  11. I think the days everyone would joke about the “AFC Least” are over at least for now.

    ——————

    Nah, will still be AFC Least next season, just different 3.

  12. Adrian – You dropped 2 of 3 and gave up 90 points in those games. I think there is more of gap than a 40-mph wind day can cover.

  13. The offense needs an automatic chain mover like Edelman, Welker, Gronk, Brown someone that gets open quickly and consistently. If the Patriots can target Alabama’s Slade Bolden in later rounds in the draft, he may be that guy. Then Patriots offense can keep up with other offenses in the AFC.

  14. He’s right. Also, the 40 million dollar per year qb thingy is a problem where NE doesn’t have that for another 3-4 years.

    I am not sure why the D quit and didn’t show up, as that’s a whole other question there, but personnel talent, he’s right.
    —-
    And the Patriots can trade Jarrett Stidham for 2 first rounders, right?

  15. I think the question mark for the Pats is where exactly did the defense go the last month? What happened? Did they get a sack in the last month at all? (Jax not included) Is it the coaches? Is it the leadership? Felt like it. Go young, go fast. Out of the old guard keep McCourty and everyone else is expendable.
    on offense, its not the QB, or the RB, but as usual with the Pats teams its the WRs. Time to spend some capitol there–but before that get in an expert WR talent evaluator. Whoever that person is in Pitt…just give him 20 million and steal him away. The WR group has been decidedly ‘meh’ for 5 years…JE11 being the sole exception. They are always just…ok. That obviously doesn’t work in today’s NFL.

  16. The New England Patriots are the second-best team in their division… The Pats draft Kirk Cousins replica with the 15th overall pick is the 1st round of the draft. Mac Jones might be smart but his intellectual abilities won’t help with his lack of arm strength or his ability to escape the pocket when under pressure. Next season will be the real test for Mac Jones because DC will have film and there’s a chance that Josh McDaniels will get an HC job this cycle. Also, we have to remember that the Bills were not at full strength on defense with at least 3 starters out.

  17. Hey touchback6. You have gotten off your medication again. The bills smoked the pats and you can’t see the writing on the wall. Always making excuses. It’s this., you get proven wrong then it’s that. Just accepts that the Bills are the dominant team in the AFCE.

  18. Fun Cheatin’ Tommy fact:
    Tommy’s career passer rating against the Patriots is 70. Even Tebow was better than that. 😂

  19. The offense needs an automatic chain mover like Edelman, Welker, Brown someone that gets open quickly and consistently.

    ——————

    Did you watch the game between Packers and Cardinals? Did you see how badly Rodgers struggled without Davante Adam?

    You are dreaming if you think Pats can find such a cheap slot receiver to move the chains with ANY other QB, even with Peyton or Rodgers.

  20. tedmurph makes a compelling case.

    During the game I texted my buddy that JWilliams is an ex-Patriot. Clearly, Bill sees Winovitch and Uche as undisciplined rushers but it wasn’t like Wise, Van Noy or Judon were maintaining the edge.

  21. Belichick needs to recruit a D coordinator. He needs to reassess his philosophy of (1) size over speed and (2) good soldiers over playmakers.

  22. There’s a disparity here, but not as wide as one game makes it seem. Let’s remember that NE’s QB was a rookie. And what would his numbers look like if he’d had James White as an outlet all season? At a glance, I’d say NE’s lack of speed in the front seven on defense is a problem. But the entire scheme for Saturday night was so passive and bizarre and inflexible that I can’t be sure the real problem isn’t the defensive staff on the sidelines.

  23. And what would his numbers look like if he’d had James White as an outlet all season?

    ——–
    Eh… Bolden did all right in his place.

  24. touchback6 says:
    January 18, 2022 at 9:21 am
    He’s right. Also, the 40 million dollar per year qb thingy is a problem where NE doesn’t have that for another 3-4 years.
    ————————————————
    They alo won’t have a star QB for 3-4 years either. And it wasn’t just the playoff game the Pats didn’t show up for. They lost 3 of their last 4, only beating the mighty Jags. And defense got ripped in the 3 losses.

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