Patriots vs Dolphins: Pats Second Half Offensive Woes Continue in Loss

Ryan PickardCorrespondent IDecember 6, 2009

MIAMI - DECEMBER 06:  Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots reacts after throwing an interception in the end-zone late in the fourth quarter against the Miami Dolphins at Land Shark Stadium on December 6, 2009 in Miami, Florida. The Dolphins defeated the Patriots 22-21.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Doug Benc/Getty Images

I wasn't going to write about this game until tomorrow but I have to try to blow off some steam here.

The Patriots fell to 7-5 after today's 22-21 loss to the Miami Dolphins and all of a sudden the race for the AFC East has become a lot tighter.

The one thing that stood out to me today was the Patriots offense struggling to score points in the second half. This has been a continuing trend the entire season and will end up finishing the Pats if they can't right the ship.

The Pats led 14-10 going into the locker room at half and had played pretty well. The second half though was a complete 180. The offense was able to put up just seven points and couldn't do much of anything.

After hitting Sam Aiken for an 81 touchdown just over three minutes into the third quarter the offense seemed to wilt. The one play that will stick out in minds of Patriots fans for the rest of the week was the interception by Vontae Davis in the endzone.

The Pats were driving and looking to go up nine.

Facing a second down from the seven yard line, instead of running the ball, the Pats decided to throw and Tom Brady was picked off ending a drive that may have won the game for the Pats.

Why they didn't just try to pound the ball up the middle with Sammy Morris has boggled my mind since the interception.

I know Moss can go up and catch pretty much any ball but Morris was having a good game up to that point and it just seemed logical to attempt a run on second down when you still would have had another down to throw it if you hadn't scored on second down.

Like I said earlier this has been a continuing trend all season long. The most points the Pats have put up in the second half all year long was 15 in week one against the Buffalo Bills.

Throughout the 12 games the offense has averaged just nine points in the second half including being shutout twice against the Broncos and Jets

The most shocking part about this is that this is seemingly the same Patriots team from 2007 that set plenty of offensive records.

I realize Brady is coming off an injury and obviously isn't the same player he was two years ago but it seems like the offense can only play well in the first half and then in the second half they transform into a completely different unit.

The Pats hadn't lost back to back games since week nine and ten of the 2006 season. If they had been able to win they would have all but locked up the division.

Instead, both the Jets and the Dolphins trail the Pats by just one game with four to go.

Something else to look at is that this team doesn't seem to play sixty-minute football anymore.

In years past, we saw the Pats play all game long and never stop hustling. All of a sudden it seems like they want to play for about 30 to 40 minutes and then just give up which doesn't bode well for the futre.

The offense will just have to rebound and look to have a good game next week as they host the Carolina Panthers. With four games left to go the Pats will have to win every one of them to guarantee themselves the AFC East division title and at least one home game in the playoffs.