There wasn’t much good news associated with the New England Patriots this past week after the team was shelled 24-3 on Thursday night by the Los Angeles Rams. What a difference a few days can make.
Just four days prior to the Rams’ route, the Patriots destroyed the Los Angeles Chargers 45-0 as they clicked on all cylinders. Everything went their way, including quarterback Cam Newton escaping serious injury after a dangerous hit from elite pass rusher Joey Bosa.
While Newton escaped injury on the low hit, landed on his knee and looked eerily similar to the play that cost Tom Brady his entire season in 2008, Bosa didn’t escape the NFL’s wrath on the play.
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Bosa Fined for Hit on Cam Newton
The aforementioned hit will cost Bosa $15,000, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 12, 2020
Here’s a look at the hit that drew the roughing the passer penalty and a fine.
Bosa was fined for this hit on Cam pic.twitter.com/dLl8t2uObQ
— Brian Mazique (@UniqueMazique) December 13, 2020
It should be noted, Bosa apologized for the hit immediately after. Sometimes, defensive players are put in a tough position, but this kind of hit can alter a player’s career, so the officials had to flag it.
Patriots Licking Their Wounds After Loss to Rams
The Patriots have to wish their second game at Sofi Stadium went as well as the first. Against the Chargers, Bill Belichick and company had their way in all three phases of the game. Against the Rams, the defense was manhandled by a rushing attack powered by great edge blocks from tight ends and wide receivers, and patient running from rookie Cam Akers.
The Patriots offense, however, struggled to move the ball at all, and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels handcuffed the passing game by only allowing Newton to throw the 16 times before turning to Jarrett Stidham, who didn’t play any better in relief.
While the loss all but kills the Patriots’ chances of extending its postseason streak, don’t look for defensive tackle Lawrence Guy or any other member of the team to mail it in during the last three weeks of the season. After the disappointing Week 14 loss, Guy made his intentions clear:
“We ain’t a bunch of quitters, said Guy, per the New England Patriots. “It doesn’t matter what the record is. It doesn’t matter what the outcome is. We ain’t a bunch of quitters. We’re going to go out there and play some football. We are who we are. We’re NEP, and that’s what we’re going to do — continue to fight regardless of what happens at the end of the season.”
With that approach, the Patriots still have solid leadership in place for the stretch run.
Newton Remains the Starter at Quarterback
While many are crying for the Patriots to make a change under center, Belichick has confirmed that Newton is his guy. That could change if the Patriots are mathematically eliminated at any point though.
If the Patriots can somehow maintain a position in the postseason race into the final week of the season, Newton will likely remain the starter barring injury.
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