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Patriots Maul Lions 29-0

Kyle Dugger returned a fumble for a touchdown in the first half to give the Patriots a 13-0 lead.MATTHEW J. LEE/GLOBE STAFF

The New England Patriots completed shut down the NFL’s number one offense as they shut out the Detroit Lions 29-0. It was one of, if not, the most surprising outcomes of the NFL weekend. The Patriots offense did enough under third string, rookie quarterback Bailey Zappe, and the defense came up big helping the Patriots avoid a three game losing skid.


Coming into the game, Detroit had the statistical best offense and the statistical best defense in the NFL. It looked like the Patriots’ only path to victory was to try to outscore the Lions, but the Patriots defense had a different idea. Linebacker Matthew Judon recorded a pair of sacks making him the only Patriots player to record a sack in each of the team’s first five games. Judon’s pressure forced a fumble that led to the scoop and score for Safety Kyle Dugger. Rookie cornerback Jack Jones also came up with a timely interception as New England made Detroit QB Jared Goff look like a goof en route to the shutout win.


There was a truly scary moment in the game for Detroit defensive back Saivion Smith. The rookie out of Alabama was injured after a collision with Patriots Tight End Hunter Henry. An ambulance had to be brought onto the field to transport Smith to a nearby hospital to be evaluated for neck injury. Smith’s father left the stands to accompany him to the hospital. At last check, Smith was conscious and had movement in his lower extremities. I wish Smith well in his recovery.


This outcome was exactly what the Patriots needed as they got very little help around the division. The New York Jets beat the Miami Dolphins which is good since New England lost to Miami earlier this year. The Buffalo Bills also put a hurting on Pittsburgh Steelers. At 2-3, New England continues to bring up the rears in the AFC East.


The Patriots go back on the road next week. New England hopes to get back to .500 against the Cleveland Browns. Cleveland fell to the Los Angeles Chargers Sunday on a missed field goal in the final minutes. There will be a lot of intrigue surrounding the game as questions persist about the health of starting QB Mac Jones. If Mac can’t go, Bailey Zappe will get another start.

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