Week 6 Preview: Kansas City at New Englandby John O'Callaghan October 14, 2018 0 comments
It will be pretty easy to get up for this one.
The undefeated Kansas City Chiefs head to Foxboro to take on the New England Patriots on Sunday Night Football on NBC in what many will consider to be a shootout.
The Chiefs (5-0) enter play with the league’s second highest scoring offense, averaging 35 points per game. Quarterback Patrick Mahomes looks like the next best thing under center, as his rocket arm and ability to scramble and throw on the run has given opposing defenses headaches.
What’s more is that he is battle tested, having won in Denver and defeated a tough Jacksonville Jaguars team with one of the best defenses in the NFL. He has a plethora of options in tight end Travis Kelce, wideouts Tyreek Hill and Sammy Watkins, as well as a dangerous running back in Kareem Hunt.
They key to try and slow down the Chiefs high powered offense is to get physical at the line of scrimmage. Despite being labeled a tight end, Kelce’s body frame is more considered to be more akin towards a wide receiver. Linebacker Kyle Van Noy has been responsible in the past of bumping tight ends at the line of scrimmage in the past to disrupt timing routes, look for him to do the same this week. For Hill, Kansas City will look to run streaks as well as crossing routes, similar to what they did in the opening game of last season. New England (3-2) will line up in zone, as well as have safety help over the top to limit the damage of the speedster.
With that being said, despite having a prolific offense, Kansas City’s defense does not do them any favors. The Chiefs are allowed an average of 25.8 points per game, which ranks them 19th in the NFL. To make matters worse for the visitors, they will more than likely be without safety Eric Berry as well as linebacker Justin Houston. Berry did a nice job of limiting Rob Gronkowski last season, and Houston has always been a veteran presence for the Chiefs defense.
The Patriots will be aggressive in trying to exploit the Chiefs’ deficiencies on defense, as they have been forced to have wide receiver Marcus Kemp line up as a safety in practice. With Julian Edelman back in the mix to go along with a more comfortable Josh Gordon and Sony Michel, along with the always reliable James White and bulking presence of Gronk, this offense should carve up Kansas City. Don’t be surprised if the Patriots elect to receive in the first half and try and score early to put the pressure on the visitors on a prime time stage.
There is no question that both teams will put points up on the scoreboard tonight. Many people preached how entertaining the 38-31 Los Angeles Rams’ victory over the Minnesota Vikings was on Thursday night a few weeks ago, expect this match up to bring similar fanfare. The over/under for this contest is 59.5, which is one the highest totals in NFL history.
Get your popcorn ready, because this one is going to be a show.