|**DATE:**||Sunday, December 17, 2000|
|**SITE:**||Ralph Wilson Stadium (75,339) - Turf|
|**TIME:**||1:00 p.m. EDT|
|**TELEVISION:**||This week's game will be broadcast regionally on CBS (locally on WBZ Channel 4 in Boston). Gus Johnson will provide the play-by-play detail and will be joined by broadcast partner Brent Jones.|
|**RADIO:**||WBCN's Rock Radio Network 104.1 FM. Gil Santos, now in his 24th season as voice of the Patriots, will call the action along with Gino Cappelletti. The tandem is enjoying their 17th season together.|
The New England Patriots (4-10) will shuffle off to Buffalo this week to battle the Bills (7-7). It will be the final road game of the 2000 season for the Patriots, who are 1-6 on the road. Their only victory on the road came at Denver on Oct. 1, a 28-19 win over the now playoff-bound Broncos. The Bills, who were eliminated from playoff contention by the Indianapolis Colts on Monday night, are 5-2 at home this season.
The forecast calls for snow throughout the week in Buffalo, with temperatures ranging from the mid-'20s to mid-'30s. But, cold temperatures have never cooled quarterback Drew Bledsoe, who is 11-4 as a starter when the temperatures are below 40 degrees, including two wins at Buffalo. He is also 17-11 as a starter in the month of December.
In their previous meeting, Bledsoe was knocked out of the game after jamming his thumb when he hit the helmet of a Bills defender in the first quarter of the game. It was just the second game in Bledsoe's career that he started but did not finish the game due to injury. In 15 games as a starter against the Bills, Bledsoe has thrown 22 touchdowns and just 10 interceptions.
The Patriots and the Bills have played in close games for the past three seasons, with each of the last two games having been decided in overtime. Their last five games have been decided by a combined total of 23 points. When the Bills claimed a 16-13 victory over the Patriots in Foxboro on Nov. 5, they extended their series win streak to three games. It was their fourth victory over the Patriots in their last five meetings. The last Patriots victory in the series was a 25-21 win in 1998. The Patriots last win in Buffalo was a 31-10 win in 1997.