Al Michaels also upset by Patriots mistakes: ‘Very strange’

Al Michaels was like all of us as he watched the Patriots do some very unpatriotic things in their 24-10 loss to the Bills on “Thursday Night Football.”

At the end of the first half, with the Patriots holding the ball and with less than a minute remaining, they faced second and first with two timeouts. However, they called two back-to-back running plays – first a transfer to Rhamondre Stevenson who was stuffed at the line of scrimmage, then a stealth QB on third down who forced Bill Belichick to burn his final timeout.

Michaels, streaming for Amazon Prime Video, was stunned.

“We are so used to seeing such judicious use of time outs by New England. It was very strange,” Michaels said. “Not like New England.”

As a result, the Patriots were forced to work wide and quarterback Mac Jones was only able to complete one more pass for four yards. They were forced to go for a 48-yard field goal, and Nick Folk hit it on the crossbar, no good.

It’s not as if the field goal made a big difference; Buffalo still ended up winning by two touchdowns. Still, Michaels was right — Belichick rarely makes those mistakes in the game.

Bill Belichick during the Patriots game against the Bills
Getty Images
Al Michaels
Al Michaels
Getty Images

New England is still having a solid season, currently 6-6 and a game away from the last wildcard spot. But maybe Belichick – who has yet to win a playoff game since Tom Brady left – is starting to lose a step.

Or, maybe he needs someone other than Matt Patricia, a former defensive coordinator and head coach, calling offensive plays. Mac Jones certainly seemed to think so.

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