The New England Patriots aren’t taking any time to dwell on the loss to the Green Bay Packers, as coach Bill Belichick has decided to take the team west for a week in San Diego.
On Sunday the Patriots fell to the Packers 26-21, their first loss in eight games. The loss, combined with a win by Denver, has put the Patriots in tough competition for the No. 1 spot in the AFC come playoff time.
The loss was particularly frustrating given New England’s opportunities to win. With just under three minutes the Patriots were driving, but Tom Brady took a sack that forced a 47-yard field goal attempt. Kicker Stephen Gostowski pushed it wide right.
“I hate to take a sack in that situation. I really would have liked to score there,” Brady said after the game.
“I just wish we would have won this one. We put a lot into this one, and this was a great test for us. I think the guys knew how important this was for our season.”
Facing what might be the top Super Bowl contender in the Green Bay Packers, the Patriots were unable to contain Aaron Rodgers and running back Eddie Lacy.
“I said all week they had good skill players. They have good everything,” Patriots coach Bill Belichick said.
But the Patriots are trying to move quickly past the loss. Belichick has decided to ease the strain of cross-country travel and bring the team to San Diego directly from Green Bay.
Fresh off game in Green Bay, the Patriots will fly straight to San Diego and spend week out there practicing and meeting, per team official.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 30, 2014
The Patriots head coach is also trying to keep spirits up after the loss to Green Bay. After the game he told players he was proud of how they performed but also challenged them to be better.
“He said we fought hard, and he’s proud of us,” cornerback Brandon Browner said. “‘Everybody could have played better,’ he said. Guys could have played better, coaches could have coached better. I feel like I could have played better, you know? And that’s how we all gotta be — take it upon ourselves to do better. It starts with next week.”
But also Bill Belichick has remained focused, even during the holiday week. He waived key special teams player Don Jones on Thanksgiving Day, saying it was what was best for the team.