Patriots 'Didn't Play Well, Didn't Coach Well' in Loss to Colts, Bill Belichick Says

Erin WalshDecember 19, 2021

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones reacts during the second half of an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts Saturday, Dec. 18, 2021, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)
AP Photo/Aaron Doster

The New England Patriots' seven-game win streak came to an end with a 27-17 loss to the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday night, and head coach Bill Belichick believes the team made mistakes everywhere, from offense right down to coaching. 

"We didn't do anything well enough to win," Belichick told reporters after the loss. "Didn't play well. Didn't coach well, over and over and over…at least close to dozen times."

The Colts dominated much of Saturday's game, leading 20-0 through three quarters. The Patriots went on a 17-0 run to bring them within a field goal just before Colts running back Jonathan Taylor rushed for a 67-yard touchdown to seal the win for Indy. 

While Patriots rookie quarterback Mac Jones threw for 299 yards and two touchdowns, he also tossed two interceptions in the loss and only completed 26-of-45 passes. He hadn't thrown more than one pick since a Week 3 loss to the New Orleans Saints. 

New England's leading receiver was tight end Hunter Henry, who finished with six catches for 77 yards and two scores. Kendrick Bourne, Jakobi Meyers and N'Keal Harry were mostly held in check throughout the night. In addition, the Patriots lost Nelson Agholor to a head injury in the third quarter.

From a rushing perspective, New England was down top running back Damien Harris, who was ruled out with a hamstring injury. Rhamondre Stevenson and Brandon Bolden had performed well filling in for Harris earlier in the season but were limited to just 39 yards on 14 carries against the Colts. 

The Patriots also took eight penalties for 50 yards on Sunday night, which is rather uncharacteristic for a Belichick-led squad. In addition, their top-ranked scoring defense hadn't allowed more than 20 points in a game since an Oct. 31 win over the Los Angeles Chargers. 

To cap it all off, the Patriots also struggled on special teams, having a punt blocked and returned for a touchdown. Center David Andrews summed up the performance pretty well. 

NBC Sports Boston's Patriots Coverage @NBCSPatriots

David Andrews: "8 penalties &amp; 2 turnovers in December is not going to win you a lot of football games" <a href="https://t.co/6i5cieoUst">pic.twitter.com/6i5cieoUst</a>

The Patriots dropped to 9-5 with the loss, though they still lead the AFC East. New England will host the Buffalo Bills next Sunday before a rookie quarterback duel between Jones and Trevor Lawrence in a Week 17 matchup at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

The Patriots close out the 2021 regular season on the road against the Miami Dolphins on Jan. 9.