Patriots

Takeaways from Patriots-Lions: Brady's frustration evident in one-sided loss

Takeaways from Patriots-Lions: Brady's frustration evident in one-sided loss

LIONS 26, PATRIOTS 10: Tom E. Curran's Best and Worst

DETROIT -- Here are five quick-hitting takeaways from the Patriots' one-sided loss to the Lions Sunday night . . . 

AND WINNER OF THE WORST RUN DEFENSE GOES TO...
The Lions came into Sunday as the worst-ranked run defense in football based on yards allowed per game. They were second-worst in yards allowed per carry. Know that hold-my-beer meme . . . ? The Patriots allowed the Lions to run at will in the first half, going into the locker room down 13-3 at the break. Detroit rushed for 81 yards on 15 carries, a 5.4 yards-per-carry average through two quarters. The Patriots came into the game allowing 4.7 yards per carry (25th in football) and it only got worse. They finished having allowed 159 yards on the ground, an average of 4.8 yards per carry.

ZERO TRACTION IN TRENCHES
If tough football teams are defined by their ability to run the ball and stop the run, the Patriots can't be considered a tough team at the moment. They came into the game averaging 3.7 yards per carry (25th in football) and it was more of the same in the first half against the Lions. They picked up just 15 yards on eight carries (1.9 yards per attempt), and seven of those carries -- resulting in 10 yards total -- belonged to Sony Michel. This looked like it should have been a breakout game for the rookie first-round pick, but he showed no burst and an inability to create yards on his own. His most glaringly bad carry of the first 30 minutes of Sunday night came with the Patriots running their two-minute drill and deep in Lions territory. Facing a third-and-one, Tom Brady opted to snap it quick, handing to Michel who had no chance at positive yardage. The Patriots lost two and ended up kicking a field goal.

MOVEMENT IN THE SECONDARY
With both Patrick Chung and Eric Rowe out, the Patriots started the game with Duron Harmon and Devin McCourty as their safeties. At corner, they went with Stephon Gilmore and Jason McCourty. Jonathan Jones was the first nickel back on the field. To start Detroit's third drive, rookie JC Jackson came onto the field for Jason McCourty. On his fourth play, the Lions ran a flea-flicker that drew a Jackson hold. He didn't see much action the remainder of the game. The Lions kicked a field goal to finish that drive and take a 13-0 lead. Cyrus Jones saw work on third downs as a slot defender, manning the second-level spot often taken by Chung defensively. 

BRADY FRUSTRATION EVIDENT
Tom Brady completed a beauty of a touchdown pass to James White in the third quarter -- stepping up to avoid the rush and throwing to open space with White blanketed by a defender -- but those moments of brilliance were short-lived at Ford Field. More common, signs of frustration from the Patriots quarterback, such as when Brady had to call timeout early in the third quarter on a first-down snap with the Patriots driving or when Michel dropped a second-down pass late in the same quarter. Against one of the worst defenses in football through two weeks, Brady must have felt like he had to be perfect. He didn't crack 100 yards passing until there were 12 minutes left in the game. 

YOUNG DEFENDERS' BRIEF MOMENTS OF COMPETENCY
Players often say plays will come in bunches. It didn't happen for the Patriots defense nearly often enough on Sunday night, but briefly, at the start of the the third quarter, that unit caught a gust of momentum. Deatrich Wise stuffed LeGarrette Blount for a loss of one and on the following play, Ja'Whaun Bentley picked a Matthew Stafford pass thrown deep down the middle of the field. That led to the drive capped by Brady's touchdown pass to White. Wise later had a sack, giving him 2.5 on the season. 

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Patriots re-sign DT Danny Shelton, release center Jake Eldrenkamp

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USA TODAY Sports

Patriots re-sign DT Danny Shelton, release center Jake Eldrenkamp

The New England Patriots have bolstered their front seven by re-signing veteran defensive lineman Danny Shelton, the team announced Monday.

Financial details of Shelton's contract were not revealed by the team. The Pats also released center Jake Eldrenkamp to make room for Shelton on the roster.

Shelton tallied 21 total tackles with one QB hit and one tackle for a loss in 13 games (one start) for the Patriots in 2018. He played in two playoff games, including New England's 13-3 win over the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII.

It was his first season with the Patriots after spending the first three years of his NFL career on the Cleveland Browns. The 25-year-old defensive tackle is listed at 6-foot-2 and 345 pounds.

Here's how Shelton's return impacts the Patriots' defensive tackle depth chart.

Lawrence Guy
Mike Pennel
Adam Butler
Frank Herron
Ufomba Kamalu
David Parry
Byron Cowart
Danny Shelton

Click here for Phil Perry's latest 53-man roster projection>>>

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Tom Brady has perfect reply to Julian Edelman's latest Instagram caption

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USA TODAY Sports

Tom Brady has perfect reply to Julian Edelman's latest Instagram caption

Julian Edelman knows a thing or two about getting a uniform dirty.

The New England Patriots wide receiver plays the type of gritty, hard-nosed football that doesn't exactly keep a jersey clean. That style was the subject of Edelman's latest Instagram post Monday, and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had a solid retort in the comment section.

It's hard to argue with Brady on that one.

The Patriots offensive line, to its credit, deserves a ton of praise for keeping the 41-year-old quarterback off the ground throughout the 2018 season. Pro Football Focus ranked the Pats' o-line as the fourth-best group in the NFL during the regular season, and in the playoffs New England allowed only one sack of Brady through three games.

Brady has been pretty active on social media this month, whether it's tweeting photos/videos, posting on Instagram or commenting on posts from other accounts.

It's providing a solid amount of offseason entertainment for Patriots fans who still have many more months to wait before the six-time Super Bowl champion gets back on the field for his first meaningful game action post-Super Bowl LIII.

Patriots re-sign DT Danny Shelton>>>

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.