Coming into the AFC Championship showdown between the New England Patriots and the Kansas City Chiefs, the Chiefs are favored over the dynasty in New England by a field goal. The slogan,“bet against us,” has been the motto and the mood for Patriot players, lead by Julian Edelman and Tom Brady, who believe to be underdogs in this matchup. Even though the team has made it to their eight straight AFC Championship matchup, and are counted out, don’t be shocked if the Patriots are victorious.
New England can easily shock the world if these things occur on Sunday night:
I’ve repeatedly stated that the Patriots have arguably the best running duo in the NFL in Sony Michel and James White. While Michel carries the pigskin through the middle, White catches it out of the backfield and marches down the field. In the Divisional Round, the Patriots hosted the Los Angeles Chargers, and Michel and White had themselves a day.
Michel had 24 carries for 129 yard along with a hat trick (three) touchdowns. White had 15 receptions (which tied the playoff record for most) for 97 yards. Clearly these two had a major impact in the first playoff matchup.
Coming this Sunday, if Bill Belichick can draw up a game plan to get these group of guys going, things may be looking bright. The Chiefs are the worse against the rush and their defense in general hasn’t been great as well. Don’t be surprised if Michel and White are once again relied upon.
Stopping Tyreek Hill
In their first meeting during the regular season, the Patriots didn’t assign Stephon Gilmore as the one to guard Tyreek Hill. As the season concluded, pro football focus rated Gilmore as the top rated corner in the NFL. In week six, Hill had three touchdowns while Travis Kelce, who was guarded by Gilmore for the majority of the matchup, only had 61 yards receiving on the day.
One of the most important weapons that Patrick Mahomes has is Hill. Belichick is known to take away the top players on the opposing sides. Gilmore can matchup with Hill and limit his ability to catch a pass from the slinger Mahomes and take away a key weapon on the offense. If New England can design a game plan and limit one of the most important pieces of the offense now that there’s no Kareem Hunt in the backfield, the Patriots would be in a good scenario in Sunday.
Tom Brady and the Cold
Tom Brady has a good winning record in his career in the NFL; but when it comes to games that are 30 degrees or below, he’s superb. He has 24 wins with only four losses. Better yet, he has won five out of six games that are less than 20 degrees. It wouldn’t be a shock if Brady marches to Arrowhead in weather that is a high of 10 degrees and wins the game for New England. Patrick Mahomes has never played in weather like this before, but yet, the greatest of all time has.
The Patriots haven’t been underdogs in a championship game since 2014. Though it may seem wrong for people to doubt a team that can make its way to a third straight Super Bowl, they still haven’t learned to never count out the Patriots. When Sunday’s game concludes the world can see the best franchise once again on their way to immortality.