New England Patriots may have saved the season with win over Chargers

New England Patriots (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
New England Patriots (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) /

It only took two weeks for the the New England Patriots to prove me wrong. Being wrong in this case is perfectly okay.

What a win over the Los Angeles Chargers. There were certainly moments in this game where it felt like the Patriots were going to give the game away just like they had done on three separate occasions this season already.

It’s hard to take a team seriously when their only victories are against the New York Jets and the Houston Texans. Now, the Patriots have finally gotten over the hump and defeated a good team.

The Patriots are very much still in the hunt for a playoff spot with a 4-4 record, and beating the Chargers means that they hold the tiebreaker in the event that the two teams finish with the same record.

How did the New England Patriots pull off the upset?

There are still things to clean up, particularly on the offensive side of the ball. Mac Jones had a rough first half but did just enough in the second half to put points on the board and ultimately secure the win late in the game.

The defense held Justin Herbert and this dynamic Chargers offense to just 17 points until a late score that didn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. Adrian Phillips was the star of the game, as he picked Herbert off twice and returned one of them for a touchdown.

As Jones and this offense go through the expected growing pains, the defense will need to continue to play at a high level, and it’s hard to see why they wouldn’t after a performance like that.

Another important note is that the Patriots won the turnover battle, which marks the second week in a row that they have done so. This team has turned the ball over at an uncharacteristically high rate this season, so it’s nice to see them continue to improve in that area.

Now just about halfway through the season, the New England Patriots are trending upwards. They have an opportunity to bolster their roster at Tuesday’s NFL trade deadline. However, it’s not clear what move they may make, if any.

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The start to the season couldn’t have gone much worse, but it’s admirable how this New England Patriots team continues to fight. They still have a long road ahead of them with more tough opponents, but you have to feel a bit better about them following a win this week.