Patriots

NFL rumors: Could Chiefs emerge as Jalen Ramsey trade suitor to combat Patriots?

NFL rumors: Could Chiefs emerge as Jalen Ramsey trade suitor to combat Patriots?

The Kansas City Chiefs defense cost the team a Super Bowl berth last season when it couldn't stop Tom Brady and the New England Patriots offense in the fourth quarter and overtime of the AFC Championship Game.

The Chiefs have remained the Patriots' only competition in the AFC through the first two weeks of the 2019 NFL season. While a lot can/will happen over the next several months, it's hard to envision these teams not meeting in the AFC Championship Game again, barring any major injuries. 

Kansas City's defense was improved in the offseason with the additions of Frank Clark and Tyrann Mathieu, but are these upgrades enough to beat an improved Patriots passing attack that just added elite wide receiver Antonio Brown last week?

Well, the Chiefs might not be done adding pieces to their defense. CBS Sports' Jason LaCanfora reported Tuesday an interesting update on Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey's situation. Earlier in the week it was reported he has requested a trade, and the Chiefs could be a potential landing spot for him.

Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill even tried to recruit Ramsey via Twitter on Tuesday:

Ramsey would fill a huge need for the Chiefs as a shutdown corner, which they currently don't have. Kansas City's defense has allowed opposing quarterbacks (Derek Carr and Nick Foles/Gardner Minshew) to post a 70.4 completion percentage through two weeks. We should learn a lot about the KC defense Sunday when it goes against the Baltimore Ravens and their red-hot quarterback Lamar Jackson.

The Patriots have their own shutdown cornerback in Stephon Gilmore, who played fantastic Sunday with a pick-6 in the 43-0 win over the Miami Dolphins. New England's secondary arguably is the best unit in the entire league and probably best equipped, both in terms of overall talent and depth, to slow down Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and his high-powered offense. 

Acquiring a cornerback of Ramsey's caliber certainly would improve the Chiefs' chances of beating Brady and Co. when it matters most. Kansas City's window to win is right now -- while Mahomes is still on his rookie contract. Ramsey also is just 24 years old, so he probably wouldn't be a short-term addition for the Chiefs defense.

Click for Tom E. Curran's latest AFC Power Rankings>>>

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Patriots downgrade S Patrick Chung, RB Damien Harris to out for Eagles game

Patriots downgrade S Patrick Chung, RB Damien Harris to out for Eagles game

The Patriots have downgraded safety Patrick Chung and running back Damien Harris from questionable to out for the game Sunday against the Eagles in Philadelphia.

Chung has had heel and chest injuries but did play in the Pats' last game before their bye week, the Nov. 3 loss to the Ravens. Harris appeared on the injury report for the first time on Friday with a hamstring issue. The rookie third-round pick from Alabama has only been active for two games this season.

The loss of Chung could impact the Patriots most in their coverage of Eagles tight ends Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert. Taking on tight ends is something Chung has excelled at. 

ESPN Mike Reiss reports that Patriots tight end Matt LaCosse, out with a knee injury since Oct. 10, did travel with the team to Philly so he will likely be active for the game.

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Ten years ago today, on fourth-and-2, Bill Belichick made one of his most controversial decisions

Ten years ago today, on fourth-and-2, Bill Belichick made one of his most controversial decisions

It was one of the most controversial calls in Patriots history...and it didn't come from an official.

It was Bill Belichick's decision to go for it on fourth-and-2 in the final minutes against the Indianapolis Colts. And it was 10 years ago today.

THE DECISION

It remains Belichick's most talked-about moves this side of Malcolm Butler. In a Week 10 matchup in Indianapolis, the 8-0 Colts faced the 6-2 Patriots in a high-scoring affair. Leading 34-28 but backed up at their own 28-yard-line and needing two yards for a first down, Belichick chose to go for it on fourth down and try and keep the ball out of quarterback Peyton Manning's hands.

THE PLAY

Tom Brady completed a pass to running back Kevin Faulk, who was driven backward by the Colts' Melvin Bullitt. After a measurement, Faulk was ruled short of the first down. Three Colts plays later, a Manning-to-Reggie Wayne TD pass and extra point with 13 seconds left a 35-34 victory.

THE AFTERMATH

There was plenty of second-guessing of Belichick's move. Had he outsmarted himself? Why didn't he punt and show more faith in his defense? 

“We thought we could win the game with that play,” he explained at the time. “That was a yard I was confident we could get.” Belichick had maintained it was more like fourth-and-long-1, rather than 2. Where the ball was spotted after the Faulk play is still the subject of debate.

Those Pats would go on to lose two of their next three, finish 10-6, still win the AFC East but get smoked by the Baltimore Ravens 33-14 in Foxboro in a wild-card playoff game. Manning's team won its first 14 games, then rested its regulars and lost twice before reaching its first Super Bowl as the Indy Colts and losing to the New Orleans Saints. 

TODAY

When Indianapolis reporter Kevin Bowen tweeted about the play's 10th anniversary on Saturday, it stirred up memories for former Colts linebacker Gary Brackens, who recalled the disrespect he felt from Belichick's decision to test the Indy defense. 

To this day, "Fourth-and-2" means only one thing to most NFL fans.

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