Many - in fact, most - players were at a loss when asked to pinpoint what caused New England's loss to the New York Jets Sunday evening.
"Need to go back and watch the film," was a popular, convenient refrain.
If you listened closely, though, you'd hear another common theme in their post-game remarks - the need to focus on the future, not dwell on the past.
"I mean, it's a long season," cornerback Darius Butlerphilosophized. "Can't keep walking around with your head down every day. You're going to take your bumps, your bruises … it's on to our next opponent."
For the second consecutive game, the Patriots committed six penalties. Quarterback Tom Brady, meanwhile, threw his first two interceptions of the 2010 season, and lost a fumble after being sacked late in the fourth quarter by old nemesis Jason Taylor. New England also lost the time-of-possession battle to New York by five full minutes, and had a lesser starting field position average than the Jets by a couple of yards.
"A lot of penalties, field position battles, turnovers," linebacker Tully Banta-Cainlamented. "Luckily, it happened early in the year and we get to face them again. It's a tough pill to swallow."
With the loss to New York, the Patriots fall to 1-1 overall and third place in the AFC East after two weeks of football. They'll host the 0-2 Buffalo Bills, currently at the bottom of the division, this Sunday at 1 p.m. at Gillette Stadium.
One loss in September is certainly not the time or occasion to begin pushing panic buttons, as several players noted. It is perhaps, however, a much-needed wake-up call.
"We have strong-willed, determined guys on our team," wide receiver Wes Welkerinsisted. "We've just got to keep our heads up, keep playing, come back [Monday] and make all the corrections, then come back Wednesday and have a good practice and let that carry over into next week."
"We came out and played a good first half," wide receiverRandy Mosstold reporters, "but they still make 60-minute scoreboards in football.
"It's a team sport. You take the wins with the wins and the losses with the losses. This one hurts. This has been a very hard working week for us. Very hard. One of the hardest in my 13 years. We had a lot of expectations coming into this game."
What, then, is Moss' solution to pull his team out of its doldrums?
"Get back to the drawing board," he posited, "keep working."
Monday 9/20 Patriots Schedule
The players and coaches are busy breaking down the film today from Sunday's 28-14 loss to the Jets. This afternoon, players will be available for media interviews late in the afternoon, as will head coach Bill Belichick.
For more notes, quotes, anecdotes from Gillette Stadium, please visit the PFW Blog.