Patriots Crowd Out Falcons in Foxborough
If the Atlanta Falcons’ fans were hoping they’d reverse their 2017 Super Bowl defeat in Sunday night’s rematch against the New England Patriots in Massachusetts, they were disappointed. The Patriots didn’t even have to fight back from a massive deficit this time around: they led from the first and finished with a 23-7 victory.
Quarterback Tom Brady was the lynchpin on the Patriots’ attack once again, throwing two touchdowns and 249 yards in total, with some assistance from the 76 yards gained on the ground by Dion Lewis.
New England Dominate from the Start
Falcons QB Matt Ryan contributed one score and 233 yards in return, but it wasn’t enough. After a slow start, the Patriots gained the upper hand and stayed dominant throughout, going into halftime 17-0 ahead.
Atlanta made some impressive drives in the second half, but couldn’t convert them into points on the board. The Patriots, meanwhile, racked up another six points, and by the time the Falcons scored with 4 minutes and 13 seconds left in the final quarter, all the home side needed to do was run out the clock.
Patriots Top AFC East
The win puts the Patriots at the top of AFC East on 5-2, and keeps them snug in the conference playoffs berths alongside AFC North and West leaders the Pittsburgh Steelers and Kansas City Chiefs, also on 5-2, and the Tennessee Titans, who lead AFC South on 4-3.
In AFC East, the Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins are both on 4-2 with a game in hand, so they’re more of a threat to New England than the New York Jets, currently on 3-4. The Patriots play the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 8.
The defeat leaves the Falcons on 3-3, also with a game in hand after their Week 5 bye. They’re third on the NFC South ladder behind the New Orleans Saints and Carolina Panthers, and ahead of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on 2-4.
So the Falcons are still in the hunt for a playoffs wild card, but they have to overtake the Saints or the Panthers first. The Atlanta side plays the New York Jets in Week 8.
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