Adrian Phillips seeing higher intensity practices with Bills approaching

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As the regular season winds down, the New England Patriots are in the thick of a playoff race. Following their loss to the Indianapolis Colts last Saturday, that race got a bit tighter. Now with the Buffalo Bills coming up next, the Patriots have been focused on putting Saturday’s difficult showing behind them.

Speaking to the media on Thursday, safety Adrian Phillips noted that there was a higher level of focus at practice this week. Mac Jones discussed the lack of intensity in practice before the loss to the Colts.

For his part, Phillips has been a key piece of the safety position. He has recorded 71 combined tackles and four interceptions so far this season. Saturday night, his impact was felt defensively as he tallied seven tackles — his second game this season with that amount.

The Patriots and Buffalo are meeting each other for the second time in less than a month. Phillips and the rest of the New England defense will be tasked with trying to stop a Buffalo offense full of playmakers. As transcribed by Zack Cox of NESN.com, Phillips wants the team to keep pushing forward.

“You never want to lose, and you never want to focus on the lows like that, but everybody’s level of preparation has tuned up a notch,” he said. “There’s another level to it for a few reasons. We’re playing a division rivalry, and this is a huge game, not just because of what’s possibly on the line, but just because it’s the next one. We don’t want to get into a lull where we’re having a two-game, three-game losing streak.

“To kind of get hit in the mouth last week, you’ve got that bitter taste in your mouth, so everybody’s making sure they buckle down now, and they’re making sure their level of preparation is even more.”

With two more games against divisional opponents, the end of the season will be anything but a cakewalk for the Patriots.

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