The weather at Highmark Stadium in Buffalo has been an obvious factor in Monday night’s game between the Bills and the New England Patriots. The contest quickly turned into a ground battle with both teams opting to run the ball as often as possible.
However, the Patriots took that methodology to a new level.
New England went into the halftime locker room having attempted just one pass. That lone attempt was a completion from rookie quarterback Mac Jones to Jonnu Smith late in the first quarter.
The Patriots ran on their other 23 offensive plays in the first half.
Needless to say, New England’s lack of pass attempts was a historic mark. According to Elias Sports Bureau, the Patriots had the fewest first-half passing attempts by a team since at least 1978.
The NFL world was locked into the windy weather AFC game on Monday night. Fans and media members were particularly fascinated by the Patriots playcalling and wondered if they would be able to keep up for the rest of the contest.
Via @EliasSports: The Patriots have the fewest first-half passing attempts (1) by a team since at least 1978.
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) December 7, 2021
The Patriots game plan so far pic.twitter.com/V57m2he6u3
— #RingerNFL (@ringernfl) December 7, 2021
Patriots playbook tonight pic.twitter.com/0MsLBYInNx
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) December 7, 2021
Mac Jones is gonna throw six times this whole game
— Drew Magary (@drewmagary) December 7, 2021
The Patriots pounding the rock tonight pic.twitter.com/mSEZIYDJ6r
— The 617 (@The617_) December 7, 2021
Even the Patriots official Twitter account openly acknowledged the team’s unique first half gameplan.
First half ran by. pic.twitter.com/14CTtHlvt3
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) December 7, 2021
It’s difficult to question Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels, but it’s hard to believe that the Patriots can continue to keep the ball on the ground and come out on top on Monday night. Even with the horrible weather, New England may need to mix in a couple pass attempts to keep the Bills on their toes.
The second half of Patriots-Bills is currently airing on ESPN. New England holds a narrow lead.