NFL

Jones hails 'incredible' offensive line in windy Patriots win

By Sports Desk December 07, 2021

Quarterback Mac Jones hailed his offensive line after the New England Patriots overcame the Buffalo Bills in a tight game in tough conditions at Highmark Stadium.

In an AFC East first-place showdown, it was the Patriots who came out on top 14-10 thanks to a 64-yard rushing touchdown from Damien Harris and two Nick Folk field goals.

New England have now won seven games in a row – the franchise's longest winning streak since they celebrated eight successive games to start 2019 – and move to 9-4, having been 2-4 after six games this season.

Rookie QB Jones only threw two-for-three passing for 19 yards and no touchdowns, while tallying another five carries for minus three yards, but the 23-year-old was pleased with the overall performance of the offensive line in very windy conditions.

Bill Belichick's team ran the ball whenever they could, with Harris tallying 111 rushing yards from 10 carries, while Rhamondre Stevenson was handed the ball 24 times for a total of 78 yards.

"For the offensive line to do what they did was incredible, they deserve all the credit in the world," Jones told reporters after the win. "And [offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels] for calling the plays that he called, knowing the environment. And knowing that, we knew we were going to be able to run the ball.

"The running backs ran hard; Rhamondre, Damien and B [Brandon Bolden]. You couldn't ask for better effort from those guys.

"It was just a crazy game to be a part of. We knew if we didn't turn the ball over, we'd be good. It was just a weird day."

Harris' touchdown was the longest rushing TD by a Patriots player since Hall of Famer Curtis Martin (70 yards) in 1997.

Meanwhile, Bills QB Josh Allen, who had 15-of-30 passing for 145 yards and a TD, made no excuses, saying: "I don't know if [the weather] affected us too bad, maybe a throw here or there, but, again, that's why I'm here, to play in those types of conditions. Gotta find a way."

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