Breaking down the Patriots' keys to victory vs. Chiefs

Breaking down the Patriots' keys to victory vs. Chiefs

The New England Patriots will look to avoid their second straight loss on Sunday, but it won't be an easy task.

They'll line up against the Patrick Mahomes-led Kansas City Chiefs in a rematch of last year's AFC Championship Game, which the Pats won 37-31 in overtime.

This time, the game will take place at Gillette Stadium where the Patriots have won 21 straight including the postseason to match the longest streak in team history. To make it 22, they'll need more of a spark than they've gotten recently from their struggling offense.

Of course, with last year's NFL MVP under center for the Chiefs, the Patriots defense will need to be the shutdown unit we've seen all season long.

On the latest Patriots Talk Podcast, Tom E. Curran and Phil Perry went into more detail on what the keys to a victory will be for the Patriots on Sunday.

"Do you think the Patriots' pass rush against a hobbled still -- not exactly where he was at the end of last year -- Patrick Mahomes could be the key to this game for the Patriots? 'Cause I do," Curran said. "I think you move him, you get to him, it changes everything. Same way it did with Dak Prescott, I felt."

As for the key offensively for the Patriots, that's the player they spent a second-round draft pick in October.

"If the New England Patriots keep the Kansas City Chiefs under 20 points on Sunday, then they are everything we cracked them up to be defensively all season long. That's my pledge," Curran said. "If the Kansas City Chiefs get over 20 points, the Patriots are not going to win. And if they do get over 20 points and I'm wrong, and they do win, it's because of Mohamed Sanu.

"Mohamed Sanu to me is the most important player on this Patriots offense over the last four games and into the playoffs. He is the linchpin."

Listen to the full episode below:


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Tom Brady's stay-at-home message contains healthy living tips amid pandemic

Tom Brady's stay-at-home message contains healthy living tips amid pandemic

Tom Brady is the latest athlete to record a stay at home message amid the coronavirus pandemic.

But his is a little different than the other ones you've already seen.

While most have spent time focusing on providing encouraging words to those dealing with the struggles of social distancing, Brady focused more on how to stay healthy amid the pandemic. Here's a look at his full message courtesy of the NFL's Twitter account.

This was a nice idea by Brady to give some tips to help people adjust to these unfamiliar living conditions. It also lines up pretty well with his health and lifestyle brand, TB12, so it's no surprise to see him preach the benefits of staying hydrated, being active, and eating nutrient-rich vegetables.

Of course, Brady did also have some words of encouragement for his audience and signed off by saying "I know we’re going to get through this together." So, that was a great gesture as well.

Brady will surely be focused on following these tips as he prepares for his first season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Brady spent the first 20 seasons of his career with the New England Patriots before signing with the Bucs this offseason.

NFL Odds: Here are the favorites to start at QB in Week 1 for the Patriots

NFL Odds: Here are the favorites to start at QB in Week 1 for the Patriots

The New England Patriots are facing uncertainty at quarterback for the first time in two decades. Tom Brady departed this offseason to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Patriots will need a new starting quarterback as a result.

That said, a favorite appears to be emerging to take over the job.

According to FanDuel Sportsbook, Jarrett Stidham is currently heavily favored to be the Patriots starter at least to kick-off 2020. Here's a look at the odds for each potential candidate at the position courtesy of FanDuel.

This lines up pretty well with what has come out of Patriots camp since Brady's departure. They seem to believe that Stidham is their future at quarterback, so why wouldn't they give him a shot to start? While Brian Hoyer isn't too far behind Stidham (+250), he's likely only that high because he has the most starting experience of the three passers currently on the Patriots depth chart.

The more interesting parts of these odds are the ones relating to veterans and rookies not currently on the team. Cam Newton (+900) leads the pack among the veteran options and is one of two non-Patriot quarterbacks ahead of presumed third-stringer Cody Kessler. The other is Andy Dalton (+1000).

While Newton is available, the Patriots don't have much in the way of cap space. So, it seems unlikely that they would sign him unless they have minimal confidence in the quarterback options on their roster or if one of their options suffers an injury down the road.

As for the rookies, Jacob Eason (+1900) actually leads the pack by a fair bit. He's still a longshot, but his odds are much better than the triage of other rookie passers listed; Justin Herbert, Jake From, and Jordan Love come in at +2600.

Listen and subscribe to Phil Perry's Next Pats Podcast here: 

Is this a sign that the Patriots like Eason? They're notoriously tight-lipped about the draft process, so it's hard to say. But if Eason continues to considerably lead the rookie pack as the draft draws nearer, that should be a good indication that the Pats have their eye on him.

Either way, Stidham is rightfully the favorite at this point and the Patriots seem content to give him a season to prove himself. But once the 2020 NFL Draft comes and goes, the picture at quarterback will be a bit clearer.