New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills, September 30, 2012: Fan Preview

Yahoo Contributor Network

For the New England Patriots it is odd heading into Orchard Park, N.Y. holding the inferior record to the Buffalo Bills. The Patriots sit at 1-2 after back-to-back losses to the Arizona Cardinals and Baltimore Ravens while Buffalo boasts a 2-1 record after back-to-back wins against the Kansas City Chiefs and the Cleveland Browns.

New England enters Week 4 with a 1-2 record for the first time since 2001 and faces a Bills team they will have to fight to win. This certainly was not what anyone expected this early in the season. The Patriots' losses come as the result of field goals against two very strong teams. Regardless, they are in a position that is far from ideal and need to turn things around quickly.

"We just don't play well when we need to," Patriots' quarterback Tom Brady said. "We've got to play our best when it means the most, and we need to start winning close games."

This could perhaps be the understatement of the year. If the Patriots expect to make the playoffs, let alone the Super Bowl, they will need decisive victories against the stronger opponents. Buffalo needs to be a start.

While Buffalo suffered a blow with C.J. Spiller going down early in the game against Cleveland last week with a shoulder injury and remains questionable, the team received good news as Fred Jackson was cleared to play.

Brady and the Patriots know the pressure is on. If they can come out and have a big game, fans can rest assured the team is back on track.

The matchup:

The New England Patriots will take on the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium located in Orchard Park, N.Y. on Sunday, September 30, 2012 at 1 p.m. EDT.

The standings:

New England enters the contest with a 1-2 record and in third place in the AFC East. They are 1-1 when playing on the road and are 1-1 against AFC teams this season.

Buffalo enters the contest with a 2-1 record and in second place in the AFC East. They are 1-0 when playing at home and are 2-1 against AFC teams this season.

The series:

The regular season all-time series record stands at 61-41-1 in favor of the Patriots.

Where to watch:

The game will be televised on the CBS network. Check your local television listings for broadcasts in your area.

Medical Watch: (PUP-physically unable to perform, IR-injured reserve, O-out, D-doubtful, Q-questionable, P-probable)

New England: Myron Pryor (shoulder, PUP), Jake Ballard (knee, PUP), Spencer Larsen (undisclosed, IR), Will Allen (undisclosed, IR), Dane Fletcher (knee, IR), Brad Herman (Achilles, IR), Visanthe Shiancoe (hamstring, IR), Jeff Demps (leg, IR), Josh Barrett (undisclosed, IR), Jamey Richard (concussion, IR), Aaron Hernandez (ankle, O), Julian Edelman (hand, O), Markus Zusevics (pectoral, O), Logan Mankins (hip, Q), Rob Gronkowski (hip, Q), Brandon Deaderick (ankle, Q), Sterling Moore (knee, Q), Nick McDonald (shoulder, Q), Shane Vereen (foot, Q), Kyle Love (knee, Q), Sebastian Vollmer (back, Q), Justin Francis (ankle, Q), Alfonzo Dennard (hamstring, Q).

Buffalo: Mike Caussin (knee, PUP), Zebrie Sanders (undisclosed, IR), David Nelson (knee, IR), Ron Brooks (foot, IR), Torell Troup (back, IR), Ruvell Martin (ankle, O), Fred Jackson (knee, Q), C.J. Spiller (shoulder, Q), Leodis McKelvin (groin, P).

More New England Patriots Commentary from this Contributor:

New England Patriots at Baltimore Ravens, September 23, 2012: Fan Preview

Arizona Cardinals at New England Patriots, September 16, 2012: Fan Preview

New England Patriots at Tennessee Titans, September 9, 2012: Fan Preview

New York Giants website claims they are Super Bowl Champions: A fan's reaction

New York media up in arms over harmless Tom Brady comment: A fan's look

Sources:

All stats provided by NFL.com

Paul Rados is an avid New England Patriots fan and a Featured Contributor for the Yahoo! Contributor Network. Follow him on Twitter @PSRados.

View Comments