Hello everyone and good morning! It’s still morning time where I’am but not in Boston, but that’s okay!
The Patriots won their first-round playoff game against the Chiefs, 27-20, so everything is okay in the football world for the Patriots fan base, but I still have some humble pie to deal out to players who need to perform better next weekend.
Not a picture perfect game for the pass defense against the Chiefs. They didn’t break often, but they sure bent a lot throughout this game. I thought the Patriots secondary overmatched the Chiefs, but they didn’t, at least not in this game. The Chiefs and their wide outs did work against Butler and Ryan. Justin Coleman had a pretty good game, McCourty did good and so did Chung, but Ryan and Butler were a mess. They gave too much room to the Chiefs wide outs and were always a few steps behind them, giving the Chiefs easy first downs. The defense was a headache, especially against the pass. This has to improve if they not only want to beat Denver but win the Super Bowl. Butler and Ryan, especially, better step it up.
2. Third Down Defense:
Everywhere and everything on the defense on third down was a nightmare. The third down defense was easily the most frustrating part of the game. Belichick spoke a little about it so maybe they will fix that part this week, but goodness they almost killed the Patriots in this game. The Chiefs had several long, time consuming drives that almost always crossed the 50 yard line and kept the ball from Tom Brady. If the offense had not been on fire in this game, it could have turned out differently. The defense has to get off the field on third down from here on out if they want to win the whole thing especially against next week’s team. It did not matter if it was third and short or third and long or even very long, they gave up first downs like a candy store gives out candy. It was awful. The third down defense must improve because Brady must get the ball as often as possible during a game. I don’t know how, but hopefully they will fix this problem that has been ongoing this season.
3. The Run Game:
The Patriots do not have a running game, or at least not yet. They didn’t really try in this game to run the football, but the very few times they did you could see why they avoided it. The plan was to pass because of how good the Chiefs run defense was, but I would love to see a little more out of Jackson and the run blocking from the OL moving forward.