The Patriots know that their third win of the season didn't earn them much in the way of style points. They made it difficult on themselves with 12 penalties for over 100 yards, two turnovers, three sacks allowed and over 400 yards of offense allowed.
But Tom Brady reiterated what several of his teammates said following the game: On the road, coming off a loss, they'll take a win however they can get it.
"The thing about the NFL is it's such a week-to-week league," Brady told WEEI's Kirk and Callahan show. "If we won by 50 points the other night, what does that really matter against the Jets this week? We'd all love to do that, and we'd all love to play our very best and execute at the highest level every week for four months. It's just, that's relatively unrealistic, but you're trying to win any way you can and score more points than the other team whether that's playing really well offensively or playing really well defensively."
Of all the numbers listed above, the sacks may be the one that's most concerning for the Patriots. Brady is playing at an MVP level at 40 years old, though it's fair to wonder how his body will hold up if he continues to get hit at this rate. He's on pace to be sacked 51 times (most in his career) and hit 105 times (eight more than he took in 2015 behind a banged-up offensive line).
Brady had no real explanation for the number of hit he's taken other than to say things are still a work in progress offensively.
"I think in general we're not a finished product right now," he said. "We're still trying to figure out what we're good at and what we need to do consistently to score more points. Any time you lose players, like [Rob Gronkowski] the other night, you have a plan and all of a sudden he's not available. Things shift. And then you're trying to still find ways to move the ball down the field and score points.
"No matter who's out there, the goal is still the same. It may look a little bit different based on the skill set of the players who are out there. We're making adjustments with injuries based on a season-ending injury like Julian [Edelman] and then weekly injuries, whether it's the offensive line, running backs, tight ends, receivers. Those go into the course of a long football season. It's still relatively early . . . Hopefully our best football is ahead of us."
Up next for Brady and his teammates are the Jets, who are tied with the Patriots and Bills for first place in the AFC East at 3-2.
"They're doing a lot of things really well," Brady said. "They're a tough rival. We play on the road. We gotta win by one point or more. That would be fine for me."