It has been 18 years since the New England Patriots have had a losing record through at least five games of an NFL season. On Sunday, the streak was ended.
The 2–3 mark breaks the Patriots’ NFL record 225 straight games in October or later above .500. The 2002 season was the last time New England failed to reach at least 10 wins.
Sunday’s game marked the return of quarterback Cam Newton, who had not played since Week 3 after he contracted COVID-19. In his first game back, Newton threw for two interceptions and zero touchdowns on 17 of 25 completions.
The Patriots made a late charge after scoring nine fourth-quarter points but ultimately fell short.
The Patriots practiced just once in-person this week as their facility was shut down due to COVID-19 cases amid the organization. Currently, DE Byron Cowart, OL James Ferentz, RB Sony Michel, RG Shaq Mason and DE Derek Rivers remain on the COVID-19/reserve list.
New England had its bye moved to Week 5 after Cowart tested positive for COVID-19 two days before last week’s game. The matchup against the Broncos was then rescheduled to be played in Week 6.
In addition, Sunday’s loss marks the first time the Patriots failed to record a victory when not allowing a touchdown in the Bill Belichick era (39–1). The Buffalo Bills (4-1) are atop the AFC East standings.
More from PatriotMaven: