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Game Notes: Belichick coaches in 454th game to tie Tom Landry for third-most in NFL history

2020-GameNotes-PDC

TEAM NOTES

  • Bill Belichick coached in his 454th game to tie Tom Landry for third-most in NFL history
  • Two big returns on special teams led to 10 points 
  • James White has second career regular season game with 2 rushing touchdowns 
  • Nick Folk extends streak to 19 straight field goals
  • Folk has second game-winning field goal of 2020; both were 50-yard field goals

BELICHICK TIES TOM LANDRY FOR THIRD-MOST GAMES COACHED

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick coached his 454th NFL game vs. Arizona, tying Tom Landry for the third-most games coached in NFL history, behind the 526 games coached by Don Shula and the 506 games by George Halas.

PATRIOTS HAVE MOST HOME WINS AGAINST NFC OPPONENTS AMONG AFC TEAMS SINCE 2002

The Patriots victory over Arizona was their 30th win over an NFC team since Gillette Stadium opened in 2002, the most wins among all AFC teams at home against NFC teams.

PATRIOTS RETURN GAME COMES ON STRONG TO SET UP 10 POINTS

The Patriots had a long kickoff return and punt return to help set up scores. WR Donte Moncrief had a 53-yard kickoff return in the first quarter that helped set up a 1-yard touchdown run by RB James White in the second quarter. WR Gunner Olszewski was credited with a 58-yard punt return in the third quarter that led to a 22-yard field goal by K Nick Folk.

PATRIOTS DEFENSE HOLDS TO ARIZONA'S TOP RANKED OFFENSE

The Arizona Cardinals entered the game with the NFL's top-ranked offense, averaging 414.3-yards per game and were limited to 298 net yards. That is their second-lowest output of the season to the 262 yards at Carolina on Oct. 4.

PATRIOTS HIGH RUSHING AVERAGE I

The Patriots entered the game as the fourth-ranked rushing team in the NFL. The Patriots rushed for 110 yards and are now averaging 149.6 yards per game. That mark would be the highest since 1983 when they averaged 162.8 yards rushing per game.

PATRIOTS HIGH RUSHING AVERAGE II

The Patriots have 1,646 rushing yards so far in 2020, on pace for 2,394 yards, which would be fourth-most in team history.

MOST RUSHING YARDS IN A SEASON IN TEAM HISTORY

3,165 in 1978

2,948 in 1976

2,605 in 1983

2,331 in 1985

RUSHING FOR THE END ZONE

The Patriots have 17 total rushing touchdowns in 2020. The Patriots are on pace to finish with 25 rushing touchdowns, which would be tied for the second-most in team history.

INDIVIDUAL NOTES

RB JAMES WHITE SCORES HIS FIRST TOUCHDOWNS OF THE SEASON;

HAS SECOND REGULAR SEASON GAME WITH TWO RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS

RB James White scored his first two touchdowns of the 2020 season. It is his second regular season game with two rushing touchdowns. White had two rushing touchdowns vs. Green Bay on Nov. 4 2018. He also scored two rushing touchdowns in Super Bowl LI vs. Atlanta on Feb. 5, 2017. White scored his first touchdown of the 2020 season on a 7-yard run in the second quarter to culminate a 7-play, 46-yard drive. He scored a 1-yard run in the third quarter to finish a 6-play, 31-yard drive.

NICK FOLK EXTENDS STREAK

K Nick Folk extended his streak to 19 consecutive field goals with a 22-yard field goal in the third quarter and a game-winning 50-yard field goal as time expired in the fourth quarter. It is tied for his second-longest streak of his career. He made 19 straight field goals from 2010-11 and made 23 straight field goals in 2013. Both streaks occurred while Folk played for the New York Jets. Overall, Folk now has seven streaks of 10 or more consecutive field goal conversions in his career.

FOLK HAD HIS SECOND GAME-WINNING FIELD GOAL OF THE 2020 SEASON;

BOTH WERE FROM 50 YARDS

Folk had his second game-winning field goal as time expired in the fourth quarter after connecting on a 50-yard field goal against Arizona to give the Patriots a 20-17 win. He had a 51-yard game-winning field goal as time expired at the New York Jets on Nov. 9 to give the Patriots a 30-27 victory.

FOLK'S 50-YARD GAME-WINNING FIELD GOAL IS THE SECOND LONGEST WITH NOT IME LEFT

Folk's 50-yard field goal is the second-longest game-winning field goal with no time left in Patriots history to the 51-yard game-winning field goal he had at the Jets on Nov. 9. The previous long was 48 yards by Adam Vinatieri in Super Bowl XXXVI vs. the Rams.

NEWTON ON PACE TO SET THE TEAM MARK FOR MOST RUSHING YARDS IN A SEASON BY A QB

Cam Newton added 46 yards rushing, including a key 14-yard run late in the game that helped set up the game-winning field goal. He now has 387 rushing yards and is on pace for 563 rushing yards. The Patriots record for most rushing yards in a season by a quarterback is 539 by Steve Grogan in 1978. Newton had 741 rushing yards in 2012 with Carolina.

HARRIS IS AVERAGING OVER FIVE YARDS PER CARRY

RB Damien Harris is averaging 5.1-yards per carry (110 rushing attempts for 561 yards). Four Patriots players have finished a season with at least a 5.0-yard average (minimum 100 attempts).

DL AKEEM SPENCE AND LB JA'WHAUN BENTLEY COMBINE ON A GOAL LINE TACKLE

DL Akeem Spence and LB Ja'Whaun Bentley combined on a goal-line tackle on Arizona RB Kenyan Drake to prevent a score as time expired in the first half.

GUNNER OLSZEWKSI HAS CAREER-LONG 58-YARD PUNT RETURN

WR Gunner Olszewski had a career-long 58-yard punt return in the third quarter. He returned the punt for an 82-yard touchdown return, but it was reduced to a 58-yard return due to a penalty against the Patriots.

LB JA'WHAUN BENTLEY HAS CAREER-HIGH 13 TOTAL TACKLES

LB Ja'Whaun Bentley had a career-high 13 total tackles. His previous best was 12 tackles vs. Denver on Oct. 18, 2020.

DL ADAM BUTLER HAS A BIG DAY

DL Adam Butler started along the defensive line in place of Byron Cowart, who was out with an injury. He tipped a pass in the third quarter that was intercepted by S Adrian Phillips at the Arizona 31-yard line to help lead to a touchdown. He also sacked Arizona QB Kyler Murray for a 9-yard loss on a third-and-seven situation late in the third quarter to force a punt.

LINEUP NOTES

SONY MICHEL RETURNS TO ACTION

RB Sony Michel returned to action after missing three games while on injured reserve and then being inactive upon his return to the 53-man roster at Houston.

JERMAINE ELUEMUNOR MAKES FIRST PATRIOTS START AT LEFT TACKLE;

SECOND NFL START OVERALL AT LEFT TACKLE

OL Jermaine Eluemunor made his first start at left tackle as a member of the Patriots. His previous four starts in 2020 were at right tackle. He has made one other career start at left tackle, starting at left tackle vs. Pittsburgh on Nov. 4, 2018 when he was with Baltimore.

JUSTIN HERRON RETURNED TO ACTION

OL Justin Herron returned to action after being activated to the 53-man roster from the practice squad. He rotated into the game at left tackle.

AKEEM SPENCE SEES FIRST ACTION WITH THE PATRIOTS

DL Akeem Spence saw his first action with the Patriots after being activated to the 53-man roster from the practice squad the day before the game.

DONTE MONCRIEF WAS UTALIZED AS A KICKOFF RETURNER

WR Done Moncrief lined up as a kickoff returner and had a 22-yard and a 53-yard kickoff return in the first quarter. The 53-yard kickoff return helped set up the Patriots first touchdown. He entered this week with just two kickoff returns for 12 yards. He had a 5-yard return on Sept. 13, 2015 at Buffalo when he played for Indianapolis and a 7-yard return on Dec. 16, 2018 at Tennessee when he played for Jacksonville.

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