Offensive struggles mount for the Patriots, Giants and Jets

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It's been more than a decade since the NFL featured three offenses as challenged as the ones for the New England Patriots, New York Jets and New York Giants.

Blame it on quarterback injuries, bad rosters, poor coaching and downright bad play, those three teams rank at the bottom of the NFL in scoring.

The Jets rank 30th at 14.3 points per game, followed by the Giants at 13.3 and the Patriots at 12.3 — marking the first time since 2011 that three teams scored fewer than 15 points per game in the first 12 contests.

Coach Bill Belichick's Patriots are easily the worst of the three offenses as the lowest-scoring team through 12 games since the 2011 Rams were at 11.7.

New England has been shut out twice at home for the first time ever after losing 6-0 to the Chargers last week and is the first team since 1938 to lose three straight games while allowing 10 or fewer points in each of them.

The Patriots had lost 10-6 to the Colts and 10-7 to the Giants in the previous two games. The last team to do that was the Chicago Cardinals, who lost four in a row when allowing 10 or fewer points each game in 1938 when players still wore leather helmets and teams ran the ball more than twice as often as throwing it.

New England will try to break that streak on Thursday night against Pittsburgh in a game projected to have few points scored. With the Steelers set to start Mitch Trubisky at quarterback and the Patriots likely going to Bailey Zappe for a second straight game, the over-under for the game has been set at 30.5 points, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.

Sportradar has tracked over-unders for the past 15 seasons and that would be the lowest total in that span, beating the 32.5 for a Saints-Browns game in Week 16 last season and a Browns-Steelers game in Week 14 of the 2009 season. Both those games finished under.

Making matters worse for the Jets and Patriots is the fact their defenses have been playing at a high level for much of the season. The Jets (4-8) are allowing 19.6 points per game — excluding defensive and special teams scores — and the Patriots (2-10) are even better at 18.6.

They are the only two teams since at least 2000 to have losing records after 12 games, while allowing less than 20 points per game to opposing offenses.

The Jets have scored only 10 offensive touchdowns, the fewest through 12 games since the 1993 Bengals also had 10.

The issues for the Giants revolve around a poor offensive line and quarterbacks who hold onto the ball too long. New York has taken 69 sacks so far this season for the second most through 12 games to the 73 taken by the Eagles in 1986.


The San Francisco 49ers have been at their best against the toughest competition.

San Francisco handed Philadelphia its second loss of the season with a 42-19 victory that featured six straight drives for the 49ers that ended in touchdowns.

The Niners now have four wins by at least 23 points against teams that are currently in playoff position, having also beaten Pittsburgh 30-7, Dallas 42-10 and Jacksonville 34-3.

Only two teams in NFL history have ever had three wins by at least 23 points against teams that made the playoffs with Kansas City doing it in 2021 and Green Bay in 1996.

San Francisco has outscored teams in playoff position by 102 points in six games — including losses to Cleveland and Minnesota. The plus-17 points per game differential against playoff teams would rank third best among the 1,290 teams that have had at least five games against playoff teams, trailing only the 2007 Patriots (+19.7 points per game) and the 2014 Patriots (+18.0).


The Cowboys head into Sunday's showdown against Philadelphia on a dominant run at home with their 14 straight wins in Dallas in the regular season and playoffs being the second-longest streak in the last 10 seasons to New England's 21-gamer from 2017-19.

The Cowboys have tied an NFL record by scoring at least 40 points in four straight home games, joining the Bengals (2013), Rams (2000), Chargers (1960-61) and Lions (1952). Dallas has also scored at least 30 points in seven straight home games, tied for the third longest ever.

The recent play from quarterback Dak Prescott is a big reason why. He has 20 TD passes and only two interceptions in his last six games. Prescott threw 16 TD passes in November, the 11th time a QB has thrown for that many TDs in a single month.


Cincinnati's Jake Browning made the five-year wait between wins as a starting QB worthwhile.

Filling in for the injured Joe Burrow, Browning delivered an impressive performance, going 32 for 37 for 354 yards with one TD pass and one TD run in a 34-31 overtime win over Jacksonville in his second career NFL start. Browning's last win as a starter came in the 2018 Pac-12 title game for Washington against Utah.

Browning joined Vinny Testaverde (1992 vs. Green Bay) as the only players ever to throw for at least 350 yards, complete at least 85% of his passes and have a TD run and pass in the same game.

Browning also had the 11th game ever with at least 35 attempts and an 85% or better completion percentage with Drew Brees the only player to do it twice. The others who did it once each were Rich Gannon, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Dak Prescott, Russell Wilson, Lamar Jackson, Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert.