Not even after Brady and Co. spotted them a 14-point, third-quarter lead.
Brady responded by directing six straight touchdown drives in the second half on Sunday en route to a 52-28 blowout.
It was a game in which the Patriots (2-2) produced 580 total yards, forced six turnovers and avoided their first three-game losing streak in 10 years.
"Down 21-7 and on the road, backs against the wall, and I thought we showed a lot of heart," Brady said. "That's what this team is made of. And we're going to battle until the end, I know that."
Brady finished 22 of 36 for 340 yards and three touchdowns, plus one rushing. The 580 yards was the fourth-most in team history.
The 45 points in the second half were the most in franchise history and fourth-most in NFL history, according to Elias Sports Bureau. In addition, they were the most by a team trailing at halftime since the Giants in 1950, Elias said.
Cornerback Devin McCourty had two interceptions in keying a defense that forced six turnovers and had three sacks.
Running back Stevan Ridley scored twice. Wes Welker had nine catches for 129 yards, and tight end Rob Gronkowski had five for 104 yards and a touchdown as both players bounced back from first-half fumbles.
"You can't panic," Gronkowski said. "When you panic, nothing good happens from there. We just stuck to the game plan."
Brady responded with an eight-play, 80-yard drive by hitting Danny Woodhead for a 17-yard touchdown. After tying the game with a 4-yard run, Brady capped a five-play 63-yard drive by hitting Gronkowski with a 28-yard touchdown pass.
The Patriots scored 35 points in a span of 12:41 in building a 42-21 lead on Brandon Bolden's 7-yard run.
"We just played and executed better," coach Bill Belichick said. "It's no magic."
Magic no. Familiar, yes.
New England improved to 17-1 in its past 18 meetings against Buffalo, and 22-2 dating to the 2000 season. The Patriots lost their last trip to Orchard Park, 34-31 after blowing a 21-0 lead.
This time it was the Bills turn to unravel.
After Jones scored, nothing else went right. Buffalo combined for two first downs and 31 yards on its next four drives, two of which ended with turnovers.
Bills coach Chan Gailey was embarrassed.
"I don't like to play like that, and I don't like to think that's who we are," Gailey said. "But that's who we were today. You can't sugarcoat it."
The news gets even worse as Buffalo enters a stretch in which it will play four of its next five on the road.
The Bills' offense sagged despite the return of its two top running backs. Fred Jackson had 29 yards rushing and 50 receiving in his first game back since spraining his right knee in a season-opening loss. Spiller had 33 yards rushing and 5 receiving after hurting his left shoulder in at Cleveland last weekend.
Both also fumbled, with Spiller's coming on a goal-line plunge late in the first quarter.
It was a dreadful outing for Mario Williams -- who signed a six-year, $100 million contract in March -- and the Bills' high-priced defensive line.
Buffalo managed one sack. Otherwise, the defense gave up the second most yards in franchise history, and most points since a 56-10 loss to New England on Nov. 18, 2007.
"A loss is a loss. I don't label it anything," Williams said, when asked if it was embarrassing.
He placed the blame on the Bills' inability to stop the run. Bolden had 137 yards rushing, and Ridley had 106.
"When you have two guys rushing for 100 yards, something's up," Williams said. "We have to have a reality check and see what's going on."
Fitzpatrick finished 22 of 39 for 350 yards and four scores -- including two to Scott Chandler.
The game had additional significance to the Patriots, as it featured the return of the NFL's regular officials after they reached a new eight-year agreement on Thursday. It came after Belichick was fined $50,000 by the NFL for grabbing an official's arm to question whether Justin Tucker's 27-yard field goal would be reviewed following a 31-30 loss at Baltimore last weekend.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft made sure to welcome back John Parry and his crew, by waiting in the tunnel following the game and attempting to shake each of the officials' hands as they made their way off the field.
Kraft then waited for Brady's arrival, and shook the quarterback's hand, as well.
The two then smiled and chatted in making their way to the locker room.
Brady improved to 19-2 against the Bills, a stretch in which he has 49 touchdowns and seven 300-yard games. .... Buffalo's 4-22 in its last 26 games against division opponents. ... The win was the 194th of Belichick's career, moving him into eighth place on the NFL list, one ahead of Chuck Knox.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
TV cameras on the Fox broadcast picked up sound of Packers linebacker Clay Matthews shouting at 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick: "You ain't Russell Wilson, bro."
Drew Brees hit C.J. Spiller with a short pass that went for an 80-yard touchdown -- the 400th of Brees' career -- on the second play of overtime, and the Saints outlasted the Cowboys 26-20.
After Sunday's 23-20 loss to Washington dropped the Eagles to 1-3, running back DeMarco Murray was asked if he's getting the ball enough, to which he replied, "I don't think I am."
A defiant Rex Ryan defended the Bills after their 24-10 loss to the Giants, pounding the podium as he commended his players for their "fight" despite the flurry of penalties against Buffalo.
Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee suffered a concussion in the first half of Sunday night's 26-20 loss to the Saints and did not return. Running back Lance Dunbar also left the game with a knee injury.
Some Browns players are starting to question a defensive unit that was supposed to be a team strength after a loss to Philip Rivers and the Chargers left them scratching their heads.