Sunday, May 26, 2024

Did Bill Belichick hint at the Patriots’ run-heavy plan against the Bills before the game?


In a game that featured strong winds, the New England Patriots kept the ball on the ground in a 14-10 win over the Buffalo Bills on Monday night. While no one expected the contest to be a high-scoring affair, very few people could’ve predicted that Patriots quarterback Mac Jones would only throw the ball three times.

But maybe people would’ve expected that game plan if they took a closer look at Patriots head coach Bill Belichick’s facemask prior to the game.

He wore a Navy facemask when he was interviewed prior to the game. Was Belichick, whose father was once an assistant coach for the Navy football team, trying to tell everyone something?

Service academies run the ball a great deal, and Navy’s college football team is no exception. During the 2021 season, the Midshipmen led the American Athletic Conference with 2,517 rushing yards, which breaks down to 228.8 rushing yards per contest. 

On the contrary, Navy threw for just 599 yards through the air all season. Most teams throw for more yards than that in two or three games, let alone the entire campaign.

On Monday, the Patriots rushed for 222 yards (4.8 yards-per-carry) on 46 attempts. Damien Harris led the way with 111 rushing yards and a touchdown on the ground while Rhamondre Stevenson added 78 rushing yards.

Considering how gutsy those winds were in Buffalo, it’s no surprise that the Patriots did their best Navy impression.

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