Rapid Reaction: New England Patriots – ESPN (blog)
September, 29, 2014
What it means: The Patriots were embarrassed. Credit to the Chiefs, who played mistake-free football and took it to New England in all facets, while at the same time acknowledging that the Patriots were outclassed from the sideline to the field. New England drops to 2-2.
Starts with the coaching staff. There is a lot of blame to go around after this one for the Patriots, and we’d start with the coaching staff. There was very little attempt to establish the run. They are trying to play a style they haven’t proven equipped to execute. Defensively, they couldn’t stem the tide against a running attack that manipulated players out of their gaps while taking advantage of specific matchups. Andy Reid and his staff were at another level compared to Bill Belichick and his staff. This is not the brand of Patriots football we’ve grown accustomed to seeing in Belichick’s 15 years as coach.
First look at Garoppolo as Brady is replaced. There is no quarterback controversy in New England. Some might go there after Tom Brady wasn’t at his best and Jimmy Garoppolo led a touchdown drive upon entering the game with just over 10 minutes remaining. We aren’t.
Gronkowski’s playing time. Tight end Rob Gronkowski continues to work himself into the mix. After playing 38, 28 and 42 snaps in the first three weeks, he was on for 31 of 49 snaps in this one.
Game ball: Special teams captain Matthew Slater was one of the few brights spots for the Patriots.
Stat of note: The Patriots are now 22-24 all time on “Monday Night Football,” with this marking their first loss to the Chiefs …read more