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The Buffalo Bills control their own destiny in the AFC East.
Josh Allen and the Bills picked up an enormous win in Foxborough on Sunday, beating the New England Patriots 33-21 behind three touchdown passes and 64 rushing yards from the star quarterback.
That spoiled a three-touchdown performance from Damien Harris, who did everything he could to drag New England’s offense to a win.
While both teams now sit at 9-6 and split their head-to-head matchups this season, the Bills have a better record in the division (4-1) than the Pats (3-2) with two games remaining.
So if the Bills win out against the Atlanta Falcons and New York Jets, two games in which they’ll be the prohibitive favorites, the divisional title will be theirs for the second straight season.
The Patriots, meanwhile, have now lost two straight games and gone from fighting for the top seed in the AFC to battling with a slew of teams for a wild-card berth.
Josh Allen, BUF: 30-of-47 for 314 yards and three touchdowns; 64 rushing yards
Stefon Diggs, BUF: Seven catches for 85 yards and a touchdown
Isaiah McKenzie, BUF: 11 catches for 125 yards and a touchdown
Mac Jones, NE: 14-of-32 for 145 yards, two interceptions and a sack
Damien Harris, NE: 18 carries for 103 yards and three touchdowns
Jakobi Meyers, NE: Six catches for 59 yards
Isaiah McKenzie, Unexpected Hero
Coming into Sunday, Isaiah McKenzie had rushed six times for 35 yards and caught seven passes for 38 yards this season. He was pretty far down the pecking order when it came to distribution of touches in Buffalo. So you’ll be excused if you never saw his massive performance coming.
McKenzie led the Bills in receptions and receiving yards against the Patriots. He was one of four Bills to find the end zone. With Cole Beasley on the reserve/COVID-19 list and unavailable to play, it was McKenzie who served as Allen’s preferred target on underneath routes.
And boy did he step up.
Bradley Gelber @BradleyGelber
Almost like utilizing Isaiah McKenzie’s speed is a smart move for the #Bills offense.
Talk about a crucial moment to have a career game.
Mac Jones Had a Performance to Forget
For much of the 2021 season, the Patriots haven’t needed Mac Jones to do much more than manage the game, allowing a solid run game and stout defense to lead the way.
But on Sunday, the Pats needed Jones to come up big. The rookie couldn’t deliver.
Matt Chatham @chatham58
Mac Jones was ragged today, put 🏈 in a lotta bad spots, missed a lot of open guys, too many misses & regrettable decisions. Just wasnt as sharp as we’ve seen, as ya need to be in a game like this. Future for him is bright & he did make some nice plays. Two different things, obvi
To Jones’ credit, he played better in the second half after a brutal start, guiding the Pats to two touchdown drives in the final 30 minutes. But his rough start left the Pats in a hole, and with the defense struggling to slow down Allen and the dangerous Bills offense, it was a hole that proved insurmountable.
The Bills host the Falcons on Jan. 2 at 1 p.m. ET on Fox, while the Pats host the Jacksonville Jaguars that same date and time on CBS.