The New England Patriots game against the Bison tickets was tight, and it played out on the wire: Up 14-10 at the end of the fourth quarter, the New England defense needed a save to outlast their opponent and claim a big win of division on the road.
The unit delivered, thanks to cornerback Myles Bryant showing a great conscience.
Facing a 4th and 14th after a short run, a penalty and two incomplete assists, the Bills desperately needed a game just inside the two-minute warning. The Patriots responded by playing a man-to-man blanket and blitzing quarterback Josh Allen – leaving the secondary one-on-one across the board.
One of them saw Bryant face off against veteran slots catcher Cole Beasley. But while Beasley wasn’t the intended target on the play, the man covering him still managed to save a breakout assist to effectively freeze the game in his side’s favor:
After the game, Bryant gave an overview of how the game unfolded.
âWe put the pressure on and I knew he had to get the ball out quickly. I was actually on Beasley, and then I saw the ball end up going [Gabriel] Davis. Then I just got to get my hands on it, âsaid Bryant. âI think I should have chosen him, it would have put the game on the sidelines much faster. But I was happy to have been able to play the game and we were able to get a win.
A former rookie free agent now in his second season with the Patriots, Bryant returned to the starting role after fellow cornerback Jonathan Jones suffered a season-ending shoulder injury. He’s been promoted to the active roster of the practice squad and has seen regular action in the last seven games – all wins, by coincidence.
The last of them saw key contributions from Bryant. As he pulled a hard flag on a 3rd and 7, he also recorded five tackles and made one of the biggest defensive plays of the day.
The key on that one?
âUnderstand where the ball is going to go in this situation,â said Bryant.
The Patriots and head coach Bill Belichick regularly preach situational football, and the second-year defenseman on Monday executed him to perfection. The payoff was a great game and, ultimately, a victory.