Patriots' Special Teams Unit Came in Clutch During Sunday's Win over Eagles

Max McAuliffe

The last three games since Justin Bethel has arrived, the trio of Matthew Slater, Bethel and the rookie punter Jake Bailey have been a force to be reckoned with. 

Especially during Sunday's 17-10 win over the Philadelphia Eagles, where we saw Bailey pinning punts down inside the ten and Bethel and Slater cruising down the field to make every play in coverage. 

Most fans just anticipated a Slater and Bolden year, but when Bailey beat out long time Patriots' punter Ryan Allen for the starting job and when Bethel became available after being released from Baltimore, things changed for the better. 

The trio in Week 11 really impacted the game and put the Eagles in a tough spot on several different occasions. 

Another special teams plus:

Nick Folk, the Patriots' third field goal kicker this year, now is 5-for-5 on field goals to start his Patriots tenure. He nailed three field goals Sunday afternoon, which was crucial in a game in which New England's offense scored only one touchdown. 

Folk looks like a great grab from free agency following the release of Mike Nugent. 

Bottom line:

A lot of people question why Bill Belichick spends so much money and energy on players who strictly play special teams. Week 11 was a standout reason as to why the Patriots head coach invests heavily in the third phase of football. Special teams influenced the win over the Eagles and all the units look strong going forward. 

Comments (3)
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Mike Constantino
Mike Constantino

Bailey was fantastic

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