- Patriots return opening kickoff for a TD for fourth time in team history.
- WR Jalen Reagor returns opening kickoff 98 yards for a TD.
- RB Kevin Harris has first career receptions, including a 48-yard reception.
- LB Ja'Whaun Bentley reaches 100 total tackles for third straight season.
PATRIOTS RETURN THE OPENING KICKOFF FOR A TOUCHDOWN FOR FOURTH TIME IN TEAM HISTORY
The Patriots returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown when WR Jalen Reagor scored on a 98-yard kickoff return. It marks the fourth time in team history that the Patriots have returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown.
PATRIOTS OPENING KICKOFFS RETURNED FOR A TOUCHDOWN
Jalen Reagor – 98 yards at Buffalo on Dec. 31, 2023
Bethel Johnson – 93 yards at Cleveland on Dec. 5, 2004
Sammy Martin 95 yards at Indianapolis on Nov. 27, 1988
Allen Carter – 99 yards at Baltimore on Dec. 21, 1975
REAGOR TAKES OPENING KICKOFF 98 YARDS FOR A TOUCHDOWN
WR Jalen Reagor returned the opening kickoff 98-yards for a touchdown for his first career kickoff return for a touchdown. It is the longest return of his career. His previous best was a 44-yard return on Oct. 3, 2021 Vs. Kansas City when he played for Philadelphia. It is the first kickoff return for a Patriots player since Cordarrelle Patters had a 95-yard kickoff return for a touchdown at Chicago on Oct. 21, 2018. It is the longest kickoff return for a touchdown for New England since Dion Lewis had a 103-yard kickoff return for a touchdown at Denver on Nov. 12, 2017.
REAGOR CONNECTED WITH ZAPPE ON A 39-YARD RECEPTION
Reagor connected with QB Bailey Zappe on a 39-yard reception in the fourth quarter, his longest reception as a member of the Patriots. His previous best was a 28-yard reception by Zappe at Denver on Dec. 24.
KEVIN HARRIS HAS FIRST CAREER PASS RECEPTIONS
RB Kevin Harris had his first career pass receptions. He caught a 6-yard pass from QB Bailey Zappe in the second quarter. Two plays, later he caught a short pas and turned it into a 48-yard gain to help set up a New England touchdown. Harris led the team with 54yards receiving on two receptions.
ZAPPE SCORES FIRST RUSHING TOUCHDOWN OF HIS CAREER
QB Bailey Zappe capped a 6-play, 75-yard drive with a 17-yard touchdown run in the second quarter for his first career rushing touchdown.
AUSTIN HAS FIRST CAREER PICK
DB Alex Austin registered his first career pick when he intercepted Buffalo QB Josh Allen in the second quarter.
BENTLEY REACHES 100 TACKLES FOR THIRD STRAIGHT SEASON
LB Ja'Whaun Bentley finished with 7 tackles to push his 2023 totals to 104 total tackles to become the first Patriots player since LB Jerod Mayo (five straight from 2008-12) to have at least three straight 100-tackle seasons. Bentley finished with 108 total tackles in 2021 and 122 total tackles in 2022.
BARINGER GETS ANOTHER 50
Rookie P Bryce Baringer has at least one 50-yard punt in all 16 games to extend his team record for the longest single season streak in team history (at any point of the season) after a 57-yard punt in the first quarter. Zoltan Mesko had a 12-game streak in 2011. Last season, Johnny Hekker (Carolina), Ryan Stonehouse (Tennessee) and Cameron Johnston (Houston) all had at least one 50-yard punt in all 17 games. Johnston also accomplished the feat in 2017.
DOUGLAS NOW HAS MOST RECEIVINING YARDS BY A ROOKIE WR UNDER BELICHICK
A week after reaching the most receptions by a rookie wide receiver under Bill Belichick, WR DeMario Douglas added 3 receptions for 31 yards and now has the most receiving yards by a rookie receiver under Belichick with 548 yards receiving and the most receptions overall by a rookie under Belichick. WR Deion Branch had 43 receptions for 489 yards as a rookie in 2002. WR Aaron Dobson had 37 receptions for 519 yards as a rookie in 2013. Douglas with 47 receptions now has the most receptions by a rookie under Belichick. In 2010, TE Aaron Hernandez had 45 receptions.
TAVAI HAS THIRD CAREER 10-TACKLE GAME AND SECOND OF 2023
LB Jahlani Tavia had his second 10-tackle game of the 2023 season after finishing with 10 total tackles. He had a career-best 14 total tackles at Pittsburgh on Dec. 7, 2023. His first 10-tackle game was at Minnesota on Jan. 3, 2021 with 11 when he played for Detroit.
DUGGER HAS THIRD 10-TACKLE GAME
S Kyle Dugger finished with 10 total tackles for the second time in 2023 and for the third time in 2023. He had 15 at Dallas on Oct. 1 2023, 12 vs. Baltimore on Nov. 15, 2020 and 10 at Houston on Oct. 10, 2021
- Team captain Matthew Slater returned to the lineup after missing one game due to injury and finished with 2 special teams tackles.
- S Joshuah Bledsoe made his 2023 debt after being signed to the 53-man roster off the practice squad.
- OL Jake Andrews saw his first action from scrimmage late in the fourth quarter at left guard.