Quarterback Tom Brady hasn’t been able to hide his frustration on the sidelines in recent weeks. Sure, the Patriots are winning and the bottom line is what ultimately matters. But the performance of the offense is still driving him slightly crazy.

Why? Check the fourth quarter.

The past two games the offense has had the opportunity to do what it usually does best. Against the Jets and Buccaneers, it was set up and primed to put the game away, but couldn’t.

That failure led both opponents to be in a position to win or tie, and the defense was forced to make a final stop. While those two games resulted in victories, some of Brady’s agitation stems from the fact the offense isn’t executing when it needs to the most.

That’s such a rare concern. The offense doesn’t usually disappear at key points, particularly the fourth quarter.

So what’s missing? Why haven’t the Patriots been able to put games away?

Let’s start with the obvious. While they’ve managed pretty well, the loss of Julian Edelman always will be a factor.

Every short-yardage, third-down scenario they don’t make in the fourth quarter, just picture Brady stepping under center with an empty backfield. Then imagine Edelman firing out and getting open for the necessary yards. Now see Brady taking two steps back and hitting him. Just like that, boom, first down. How many times did that happen last year? A lot.

Edelman led the NFL in third-down receiving yards (431) last year and was second with 28 catches. He’s always been their chain-mover.

His loss and impact is felt every game, but especially during vital moments.

Danny Amendola has done a terrific job converting 10 of 12 third-down chances and one on fourth down. He’s been clutch in so many ways.

But the dagger still was missing Sunday at the Jets.

After Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 28-yard field goal on a drive that carried into the fourth quarter to put the Pats up 24-14 with 14:13 left, that was it for the offense.

They had two chances to bury the Jets in the fourth quarter and couldn’t even get a first down.

On the first series, a holding penalty on Marcus Cannon negated an 18-yard run by Dion Lewis. That put the Pats in a hole. Penalties have been a killer throughout the season – one more factor contributing to the problem.

In the Tampa Bay game, the Pats led 16-7 after three quarters. In the two possessions they had in the fourth, they managed two first downs, punting twice. They did kick a field goal but that was after recovering an onside kick. They didn’t get a first down on that possession.

Rob Gronkowski, who is a reliable option to move the chains (10 of 12 on third down), didn’t play against Tampa Bay. Brandin Cooks hasn’t quite delivered in those must-have situations. He’s been great on the long ball but coming across the middle for those short quick slants, he doesn’t have that brand of crazy that Edelman and Amendola possess.

He’s just 3 of 10 on third-down targets.

“You have to execute what you’re doing, whatever that may be,” offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels said. “Run, pass, pass protection, routes, throws, whatever the play is in that situation. If you want to finish the game on offense, which is what we always try to do, you’re going to have to get first downs and possess the ball. The defense is trying to get the ball for their offense. There’s usually going to be a lot of tight coverage … we have to do a better job of executing in those situation so we can finish the game with the ball, which is always a goal of ours when we have the lead. So yeah, it’s frustrating when we don’t do that.

“All of us can do better. I can do better. Every position group can do better to impact those situations in a positive manner.”

Running back James White, who leads the team with 33 catches, can be used more. Another issue has been the absence of Rex Burkhead, who missed the past few weeks with a rib injury. He’s another option as a chain-mover. Plus, tight end Dwayne Allen has been an absolute dud in the passing game.

Last year, Martellus Bennett was helpful in extending drives and burying opponents late. Allen hasn’t done much of anything in that regard.

“We’ve had stretches where we’ve executed well and had stretches and done a lot of good things. We’ve certainly had stretches where we didn’t,” McDaniels said. “We’re in the process of trying to improve and get better.”