Foxborough, Massachusetts - The New England Patriots fell to 1-1 on the season after this Sunday's late afternoon game in Jacksonville, marking yet another moment in his career when Tom Brady lost in over eighty-seven degree heat. The victory for the Jacksonville Jaguars raised many questions for the NFL and for both teams involved. Are the Jaguars now the team to beat in the AFC? Is Blake Bortles a competent quarterback at long last? Is Tom Brady's Kryptonite playing in the heat? We may never know the answer to that last one (though, it might just be, considering he rakes in cold weather games), but the first two are most definitely yes.
Jacksonville now owns the tiebreaker over New England (like for home field advantage in the post-season, for example) and with the prowess developed by the Jaguars, it might just be crucial as the season develops. With Bortles coming into his own (he had four touchdowns in this game), a defense that stymied the innovative Patriots offense, and a coach who learned from his mistakes in last year's AFC Championship Game (which New England came back to win), the Jaguars are arguably one of the best teams in the NFL.
They defeated the Patriots 31-20 and they even did this without their star running back, Leonard Fournette. Not only did they win, but they also like indefatigable in every way, running all over the Patriots on both sides of the ball. Patriots fans would be wise to be wary about Jacksonville.
As for the positives in New England, they managed to get a fair amount of turnovers from Duron Harmon and Kyle Van Noy. Rookie running back Sony Michel also made his debut in the game and he looked very solid, especially down the stretch. He only racked up thirty-four yards on ten rushes, but he showed a lot of promising signs for things to come.
Stephen Gostkowski made two field goals, but he missed one on the Patriots' first drive. The scoring was rounded out by two touchdown receptions from Chris Hogan.
The Patriots will look to get back in the win column next Sunday night against their old defensive coordinator, Matt Patricia, and the Detroit Lions.