(Photo courtesy of TomsGuide.com) Quarterbacks Mac Jones on the left and Justin Herbert on the right
The New England Patriots pulled away with a narrow win against the Los Angeles Chargers, the final score was 27-24.
The Sunday afternoon matchup saw an incredible rematch between the two teams. In 2020, the Patriots pulled off an incredible 45-0 blowout over the Chargers and their second year quarterback Justin Herbert.
The Patriots returned to SoFi Stadium in LA facing a new Chargers team. First year head coach Brandon Staley with sophomore quarterback Justin Herbert have helped lead the Chargers to a solid 4-2 start.
The Chargers started their first drive strong, moving downfield and scoring quickly with running back Austin Ekeler.
Despite this, the Patriots offense responded fast. On the first drive, wide receiver Nelson Agholor caught a 44-yard bomb from quarterback Mac Jones. To end the drive, running back Damien Harris charged into the endzone for a one-yard rushing touchdown.
By the start of the second quarter, the game was tied 7-7 and the Chargers started another offensive drive. At their 14 yard line, Chargers running back Justin Jackson, took a handoff and ran left, before suddenly finding an opening in the Patriots defense and rushing for 75-yards
Despite the blow, the Patriots returned a few highlights of their own. Tight end Jonnu Smith converted a first down after causing a missed tackle and stiff arming another defender as he dove for a first down.
Tight end Hunter Henry later caught a 33-yard pass to bring the Patriots into the red zone and onto the Chargers four-yard line.
Despite the great plays, the Patriots were unable to score and failed on fourth down. However, the Chargers were unable to convert on their downs, and punted the ball away the following drive.
For the rest of the second quarter, both teams’ defenses held each other’s offenses short. The Patriots defense came up with a big interception with a minute left in the half, as a tipped pass from running back Ekeler fell into the hands of safety Adrian Phillips.
Despite this, the Patriots were only able to get a field goal. The score going into halftime was 14-13 with the Chargers narrowly ahead.
The game continued to be a defensive battle into the second half, as both offenses settled for field goals. However, by the start of the fourth quarter, the Patriots defense would come away big.
After a miscommunication, a wayward pass by Herbert was intercepted by safety Phillips again. He returned it into the endzone for a pick-six. The Patriots then scored on the two-point conversion, bringing their score up to 24.
The Patriots would kick one more field goal later in the game, bringing their score up to 27. With a ten-point deficit and 47 seconds left in the game, the Chargers sent up a prayer. Wide receiver Josh Palmer answered that prayer, catching a huge 24-yard touchdown pass and bringing them within a field goal to tie.
However, despite the great play, the Chargers were unable to recover their onside kick. Poetically, tight end Hunter Henry, a former Charger, would secure the kick for the Patriots, sealing the victory.
Quarterback Mac Jones finished the game throwing 18/35 for 217 yards and no touchdowns. Quarterback Justin Herbert also finished throwing 18/35 for 223 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions.
Week eight started off on Thursday night with a powerhouse matchup between the undefeated Arizona Cardinals and the 6-1 Green Bay Packers. The Packers ultimately won, the final score 24-21.
Packers Quarterback Aaron Rodgers finished the game throwing 22/37 for 184 yards and two touchdowns. Meanwhile, quarterback Kyler Murray for the Cardinals finished throwing 22/33 for 274 yards and two interceptions.
Despite falling to a 7-1 record, the Arizona Cardinals still narrowly lead in the NFC West division over the 7-1 Los Angeles Rams.
The New Orleans Saints pulled off an impressive win against their divisional rival Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Despite Jameis Winston going down in the second quarter and being out for the season with a torn ACL, the Saints still came out with a 36-27 victory.
Quarterback Tom Brady finished the game throwing 28/40 for 375 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions in the loss. Meanwhile, backup quarterback Trevor Siemian ended throwing 16/29 for 159 yards and one touchdown.
The New York Jets pulled off a massive upset win over the Cincinnati Bengals , the final score 34-31.
Quarterback Joe Burrow ended the game throwing 21/34 for 259 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. Meanwhile, backup quarterback Mike White threw a very impressive 37/45 for 405 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions.
The Patriots now elevate to a 4-4 record, second in the AFC East Division. They continue their tough stretch of games as they now fly back east to Charlotte to face the 4-4 Carolina Panthers.