FOXBOROUGH, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- Despite the coronavirus outbreak at Gillette Stadium, the New England Patriots took the field on Sunday against the Denver Broncos, falling short 18 to 12.
Western mass news spoke with Patriots players and coaches after the game.
Leading up to this game, the Patriots only had three full practices in two weeks due to more players testing positive for COVID-19, and you could see the impact it had on the team during Sunday's game.
The Patriots unable to get the job done against the Broncos, a team they were favored to beat. Even though starting quarterback Cam Newton made his return to the field after having not been on the field in over a week; it wasn't pretty.
The coronavirus pandemic played a major role in Sunday's loss. The Patriots were unable to get in many practices throughout the past two weeks.
Despite the circumstances, running back James White told Western Mass News there's no excuse for the team's performance.
"I mean, it's a little different just not getting the chance to practice, but that's no excuse. It's just kind of the world we're living in right now. There's a pandemic going on, so we got to find a way to adjust, be prepared, [and] play. I thought we were prepared to play. I just don't think we played our best football," White explained.
There are now five players on the team's COVID-19/reserve list, including running back Sony Michel, who tested positive this past week.
Newton also made his return to the field for the first time since being removed from the COVID-19/reserve list, though it was not his best performance. He threw two interceptions and no touchdowns.
He told Western Mass News he felt rusty, being off the field for quite some time but said he'll show a different performance moving forward.