FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Another week. Another tough matchup for Darrelle Revis.
The New England cornerback, who has been lining up against the opposition’s top receiver in five games with his new team, wouldn’t commit to doing it again Sunday against Buffalo rookie Sammy Watkins.
“I can’t tell you the game plan, buddy,” said a laughing Revis on Friday before traveling to Buffalo. “I’m looking forward to the game on Sunday. I’m looking for us to go up there and win —that’s the main goal.
“Whatever my assignment is, it is. I just gotta go out there and play and compete.”
The Patriots and Bills come into this game tied for first place in the AFC East at 3-2.
Watkins, who has caught 24 passes for 284 yards and two touchdowns in his first season out of Clemson, said this week he’s expecting to see No. 24 in his face on Sunday.
“We actually found he’s going to be following me around the field, so I’m going to have to be prepared for his jams,” Watkins said. “He’s very smart. I have to be very competitive and smart off the ball.”
Asked about the comment, Revis said Friday, “I don’t know what he heard or what he’s been told — it don’t matter to me.”
In his matchup with Cincinnati’s A.J. Green last Sunday, Revis had five passes, one for a touchdown, caught against him for 81 yards. But he also jarred the ball loose from Green after one of the catches, leading to one of the Patriots’ three fumble recoveries in the game.
He said Green and Watkins are “two different players,” but the goal remains the same, and turnovers are part of that goal. The Patriots have 11 takeaways in five games; the opposition has five.
“The coach has been emphasizing to us to make turnovers,” said Revis, who has one interception this season. “I think that’s been the goal since the offseason, since Day 1 when we came here. Guys have been really focusing on disruption drills and just been focusing more on attacking the ball more on defense.
“We’ve believe in turnovers and we believe we have the players to make big plays and make turnovers.”
Revis went after the ball against Green.
“He catches the ball in front of you and he has his back turned, so at that point in time right there the ball carrier doesn’t know somebody’s probably behind him, and that’s when you can kind of do something and try to turn over the ball,” he said.
As for Watkins, Revis calls him “very talented. Actually I’m a big fan of watching him when he was at Clemson. He’s a very explosive receiver. He can run all the routes. He can make all the tough catches. It’s going to be fun.”
The Patriots are 1-2 on the road, surrendering 74 points in the two road losses, 41 in an embarrassment at Kansas City Sept. 29.
They are 3-7 in their last 10 road games, counting last season’s playoff loss at Denver.
Quarterback Tom Brady is 22-2 lifetime against the Bills, but the two losses, in 2003 and ’11, came in Buffalo, where the Patriots have won the last two years.
“Through the years, having experienced away games, they’re always tough,” Revis said. “One thing you want to do is jump on a team fast . make plays and take the momentum away. The home team always has the advantage of having the momentum and you gotta go in there and take that away as quickly as possible.”
NOTES: Cornerback Brandon Browner, activated this week after serving a four-game league drug suspension and missing last week’s game, is bothered by an ankle problem and difficulty picking up the Patriots’ defensive schemes. He was one of four players not at practice on Friday. … Wide receiver Brian Tyms, also coming back from NFL suspension, is listed on this week’s depth chart. … The Patriots next three games are at home, starting Thursday against the New York Jets.