Nick Folk’s 50-yard field goalie in a record time gave the Patriots a 20-17 victory over the Cardinals in a home and back game Sunday at Foxborough.
The winning kick came less than two minutes after Zane Gonzalez missed a 45-yard kick that would have given Arizona the lead.
Trailing 10-7, the Patriots’ defense stuffed Arizona’s Kenyan Drake in the fourth and scored a 1 in the final play of the first half. The stop gave New England some momentum ahead of the intermission.
The Patriots appeared to take the lead early in the second half. Gunner Olszewski returned a punt into the end zone as an Anfernee Jennings block cleared him for the final 24 yards. But the rookie was called in for an illegal block on Ezekiel Turner that drew criticism from the Patriots sideline and the FOX broadcast team.
The flag initially cost the Patriots 39 yards and ultimately cost them four points as New England settled for a 22-yard tie field goal by Folk that made it 10-10 with 7: 46 to play in the third quarter.
The terrain remained tilted towards New England. Three games later, Adam Butler got his hands on Murray’s third pass and Adrian Phillips intercepted the interception.
It took the Patriots three tries from the Cardinals’ 1-yard line to get into the end zone, but James White finished the drive on left ground that gave the Patriots a 17-10 lead with 3:30. to play in the third.
Drake stepped in to tie the game with 8:02 left in the fourth, tying the score at 17-17.
With 4:27 left in the fourth quarter and the game tied, Newton had another chance to lead a late lead and once again the Patriots quarterback failed to deliver. Dr. Kirkpatrick intercepted him at Arizona 40. But as the Cardinals killed plenty of clock, Gonzalez missed a 45-yard field goal with 1:47 to play, giving New England another shot.
Newton was 9 for 18 for 84 yards and two passing interceptions. Kyler Murray was 23-for-34 for 170 yards and one interception, while Drake had 78 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries.
Things started off as badly as they could get for the Patriots. After receiving the ball to start the game, Newton was hit on the third try and the ball flew high in the air. When he finally fell, he settled into the thick mittens of Patriots 23 defensive lineman Markus Golden.
Three games later, Kenyan Drake scored with a meter to bring the score to 7-0, at 2:51 of the match.
Arizona extended their advantage to 10-0 with 1:49 left in the first quarter, but it was almost a moral victory for the New England defense as pressure on Murray delayed a once promising practice and forced the Cardinals to settle for a field goal.
Driven by a 55-yard kickoff return by the call of practice team Donte Moncrief, the Patriots offense came alive in the next practice. Bill Belichick bet on the fourth and the 2 on the Cardinals 7. Newton took the snap and rolled to the right. He gave the option throw to White, who ran for his first touchdown of the season to make it 10-7, 45 seconds into the second quarter.
The Patriots (5-6) head west to face the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday.