Patriots
Bills
13 - 0 Final
  for this game

After blanking Bills, Patriots shut out of postseason

Dec 29, 2008 - 2:49 AM ORCHARD PARK, New York (Ticker) -- The New England Patriots did their job but got no help in their quest for a postseason berth.

Sammy Morris rushed for 85 yards and LaMont Jordan scored on a 2-yard run as the Patriots capped off the regular season with a 13-0 win over the Buffalo Bills at wind-blown Ralph Wilson Stadium on Sunday.

But New England (11-5) was squeezed out of the playoffs following wins by Miami and Baltimore later Sunday.

"As disappointed as we are that the season is over, I remain very proud of this team," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said.

The Dolphins defeated the New York Jets, 24-17, to claim the AFC East title, and the Ravens snagged the final wild card berth with a 27-7 victory over Jacksonville.

That made New England the first 11-win team to miss out on the postseason since the Denver Broncos in 1985.

"It's been kind of a roller coaster of emotions winning that game and getting out of the shower and having to get on the plane and wait to see what happened with the Jets game," Patriots running back Sammy Morris said. "(We were) undefeated in December. That's when playoff teams really make their push. We did our part toward the end, but that is part of having to rely on other teams."

It was the 11th consecutive win by the Patriots over the Bills (7-9), who lost nine of their final 12 games following a 4-0 start.

"I think we enjoy the win," Patriots quarterback Matt Cassel said of the team's mind-set prior to Sunday's late-afternoon results. "We go home and we hope the situation comes about where we get a chance to play in the playoffs. I think this team is definitely deserving. We worked to this point, hopefully things work out and we get a shot."

With howling winds gusting over 50 miles per hour, attempting to pass turned into a travesty and field goals were an adventure at both ends of the field. At one point in the second quarter, the brutal winds caused the goalposts to bend, forcing a delay to straighten then out.

"It was tough, you want to get the ball out there, find routes where you can throw in a hurry, you couldn't put any air on it," Belichick said. "As long as we could run the ball, we felt it was the kind of game you wanted to make the other team stop you in the running game."

Stephen Gostkowski converted field goals of 33 and 23 yards for the Patriots, who haven't lost to the Bills since September 7, 2003. Gostkowski almost missed a 26-yard attempt that took a complete right turn in flight.

"It was nuts, it was almost laughable," Gostkowski said. "I'm just glad it didn't have any impact on the game. I got to come back and make another one after that. Any field goal in those conditions are tough, even extra points are tough. There's no chip shot out there."

Cassel finished just 6-of-8 for 78 yards for New England, which posted its four straight win overall and 12th in a row in December.

New England, which improved to 24-2 in December since 2003, also registered its first shutout since blanking the Green Bay Packers on November 19, 2006.

"To win 11 games was a big accomplishment not only for myself but for this team and organization," Cassel said. "It showed the resiliency and also the great coaching that goes in every week."

Trent Edwards completed 14-of-24 passes for 128 yards and Fred Jackson, subbing for an injured Marshawn Lynch, rushed for 133 yards on 26 carries for Buffalo.

Trailing 3-0, the Bills made a major gaffe in the closing seconds in the first half. With 22 seconds to play and facing 3rd-and-5 at the Patriots 12, Jackson picked up three yards.

But instead of the field goal unit taking the field, players from both sides engaged in a brief scuffle and time ran out on the half.

"You run the ball, if you get the first down, then you kill it, if you don't get the first down, you run your field goal team on and kick it," Bills coach Dick Jauron said. "We had plenty of time, we had 22 seconds, we just let the clock run out on us. They never set the ball ready for a play, so it's not a question I can answer."






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    Patriots 13, Bills 0  FinalDec 29 5:17 AM
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    Patriots 13, Bills 0  FinalDec 28 5:49 PM


  • NFL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NEW ENGLAND 3 0 7 3 13
    BUFFALO 0 0 0 0 0 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NWE - FG, STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 33 YD, 11:59.
    Drive: 9 plays, 48 yards in 4:11.
    Key plays: Cassel 19-yard pass to
    Evans to Buffalo 44; Cassel 12-yard
    pass to Evans to Buffalo 21. NEW
    ENGLAND 3-

    Dec 28 3:48 PM


  • NFL
    FG NWE
    STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 23 YD
    NEW ENGLAND 13
    BUFFALO 0 10:15 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Patriots 13, Bills 0  4th - 10:15Dec 28 3:11 PM


  • NFL
    END, 3RD QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NEW ENGLAND 3 0 7 10
    BUFFALO 0 0 0 0 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NWE - FG, STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 33 YD, 11:59.
    Drive: 9 plays, 48 yards in 4:11.
    Key plays: Cassel 19-yard pass to
    Evans to Buffalo 44; Cassel 12-yard
    pass to Evans to Buffalo 21. NEW
    ENG

    Dec 28 3:02 PM


  • NFL
    TD NWE
    LAMONT JORDAN 2 YD RUN
    (STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI KICK)
    NEW ENGLAND 10
    BUFFALO 0 4:39 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Patriots 10, Bills 0  3rd - 4:39Dec 28 2:50 PM


  • NFL
    HALFTIME 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NEW ENGLAND 3 0 3
    BUFFALO 0 0 0 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NWE - FG, STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 33 YD, 11:59.
    Drive: 9 plays, 48 yards in 4:11.
    Key plays: Cassel 19-yard pass to
    Evans to Buffalo 44; Cassel 12-yard
    pass to Evans to Buffalo 21. NEW
    ENGLAND

    Dec 28 2:13 PM


  • NFL
    END, 1ST QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NEW ENGLAND 3 3
    BUFFALO 0 0 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NWE - FG, STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 33 YD, 11:59.
    Drive: 9 plays, 48 yards in 4:11.
    Key plays: Cassel 19-yard pass to
    Evans to Buffalo 44; Cassel 12-yard
    pass to Evans to Buffalo 21. NEW
    ENG

    Dec 28 1:37 PM


  • NFL
    FG NWE
    STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI 33 YD
    NEW ENGLAND 3
    BUFFALO 0 3:01 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Patriots 3, Bills 0  1st - 3:01Dec 28 1:28 PM
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