Folk kick as time expires lifts Patriots over Cardinals at home

Folk kick as time expires lifts Patriots over Cardinals at home
New England Patriots defensive back Adrian Phillips, center, celebrates his interception of a pass by Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola) (Elise Amendola/AP)

FOXBORO, Mass. — After allowing 10 points on their first two defensive series, the Patriots defense locked the Arizona Cardinals’ offense down until the fourth quarter Sunday, en route to a 20-17 win at Gillette Stadium. RB James White led the way on offense with two rushing touchdowns as New England scored 20 of the final 27 points to earn the win.

K Nick Folk drilled the game-winning field goal, converting from 50 yards, as time expired, his second game-winning field goal of the season.

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With the victory, the Patriots move to 5-6 on the season and will look to move back to .500 for the first time since Week 2 when they travel to Los Angeles to take on the Chargers next Sunday.

After K Zane Gonzalez missed a go-ahead 45-yard field goal attempt with 1:47 to go in the contest, the Patriots took the ball at their own 35-yard-line looking to win the game.

Shortly after, and facing a third-and-long in their own territory, Cam Newton (9-for-18, 84 passing YDS, 2 INTs) peeled off a 14-yard run near midfield to keep New England’s hopes alive. Four plays later, Folk delivered the win by drilling the game-winning kick through the uprights.

White found paydirt in each half, with his first score coming on a 7-yard rush into the endzone as the Patriots faced 4th-and-2 at the beginning of the second quarter. Then, with the third quarter winding down and the game tied at 10-10, White gave New England the lead on a 1-yard touchdown run on 3rd-and-goal.

However that lead would not hold, as a pair of defensive penalties deep in New England territory kept the ball in Arizona’s hands a few drives later. They made the Patriots pay with RB Kenyon Drake’s second touchdown of the game - a 1-yard rush - tying the score at 17-17.

The Cardinals’ only other touchdown of the afternoon came on their first drive of the game. Newton’s eighth interception of the season set Arizona up on the New England 23-yard-line. Three plays later, Drake plunged into the end zone on his first 1-yard touchdown run of the day.

After allowing the score just three minutes into the contest, the Patriots’ defense held firm for the next 42 minutes, holding the Cardinals (6-5) to three more points entering the fourth quarter.

The defense’s defining play of the game came on the final play of the first half. With the Cardinals facing 4th-and-goal from the 1-yard-line, DT Akeem Spence and LB Ja’Whaun Bentley stuffed Drake’s rushing attempt as time expired in the second quarter, keeping the Patriots’ deficit at three points headed into halftime.

S Adrian Phillips hauled in an interception for the lone Patriots turnover of the game, setting the stage for White’s second touchdown six plays later.

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