Pats continue dominance over Bills, win for 27th time in past 30 meetings
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Tom Brady was a buzzkill in Buffalo once again.
In silencing a raucous crowd and exposing Bills coach Rex Ryan’s brash talk for bluster, Brady threw three touchdowns and 466 yards passing — the second-most of his career and most by any player against Buffalo — in leading the New England Patriots to a 40-32 win Sunday.
And when it came time to have the last word, Brady shrugged by saying he could have done even better.
"We had a lot of good plays, but I think we left a lot of plays out there," Brady said. "But it’s great to be 2-0."
It was an all-too-familiar performance from a quarterback who has feasted on the Bills during a 15-year run of dominance. Brady improved to 24-3 against Buffalo, while the Patriots are now 27-3 in the past 30 games against their AFC East rivals.
Ryan might be the Bills new coach, but he’s seen this type of performance from Brady before.
"I’ve been on the wrong end of it a few times when the kid gets hot, and Brady was hot," Ryan said, before turning his attention to Patriots coach Bill Belichick. "It’s on my shoulders. Belichick outcoached me. No question about it."
Ryan then used a profanity in explaining how poor of a job he did.
The Bills had a scare when starting safety Aaron Williams was loaded into an ambulance on the field and taken to the hospital after sustaining a neck injury late in the third quarter. The team announced Williams was released from the hospital after undergoing a series of tests.
The Patriots (2-0) took control by scoring three touchdowns in less than six-minutes spanning the first and second quarters. And then they hung on after the Bills (1-1) mounted a 19-point fourth-quarter rally that eventually fell short.
The Bills’ final drive ended when Tyrod Taylor was intercepted a third time after his pass glance off the fingers of receiver Sammy Watkins and into the arms of Logan Ryan.
Julian Edelman had 11 catches for 97 yards and two touchdowns. Tight end Rob Gronkowski scored his fourth TD of the season — and 10th against Buffalo — on a 2-yard catch. And don’t forget running back Dion Lewis, who had 40 yards rushing and a touchdown, and added six catches for 98 yards.
It didn’t matter much to Lewis that Ryan didn’t know his name before the game — or after.
"Winning motivates me," Lewis said.
The Bills looked nothing like the team coming off a 27-14 season-opening win over Indianapolis.
They began unraveling after Karlos Williams scored on a 2-yard run on Buffalo’s opening drive.
The Patriots eventually scored on three consecutive possessions before building a 37-13 lead after Stephen Gostkowski hit a 50-yard field goal in the final minute of the third quarter.
It proved to be a deficit too big to overcome for a Tyrod Taylor-led offense that managed 127 yards on its first 10 possessions — and 80 of those came on the first possession.
"We killed ourselves," said Taylor, who finished 23 of 30 for 242 yards with three touchdowns. He also threw three interceptions and was sacked eight times.
The Bills defense was hardly better in allowing 507 yards offense and 28 first downs.
"I’m embarrassed," defensive tackle Kyle Williams said. "It looks bad on our team, our fans and it reflected in the way that we played. It’s inexcusable."
Discipline was also a big problem. The Bills were penalized 14 times for 140 yards.
Brady took the air out of what began as a raucous environment at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bills fans were buzzing all week in a bid to set a record for loudest outdoor stadium. They even raised enough money to have a Guinness World Record official on hand to measure the decibel level. The results were not revealed and fans began heading for the exits in the final minute of the third quarter.
"They gave us tremendous energy," linebacker Jerry Hughes said of the fans. "We just didn’t come out and play with that energy for all four quarters."
NOTES: Bills PK Dan Carpenter missed one of three extra-point attempts. … Brady now has 399 career touchdown passes, one short of becoming the NFL’s fourth player to reach the 400-TD plateau. … Bills TE Charles Clay, WR Robert and WR Sammy Watkins caught TDs for Buffalo