The Patriots started the game with the ball as QB Tom Brady and company went right to work. RB Rex Burkhead earned the start alongside WR Chris Hogan, WR Brandin Cooks, TE Rob Gronkowski, TE Dwayne Allen, LT Nate Solder, LG Joe Thuney, C David Andrews, RG Shaq Mason, and RT Marcus Cannon.
RB James White quickly subbed in and ran the ball efficiently against the Chiefs defense, as Brady supplemented the rushing game with nice connections to Cooks and Danny Amendola.
The Patriots lost an ugly game to the Chiefs. Let's break it down.Posted by Pats Pulpit: For New England Patriots News on Thursday, September 7, 2017
The Patriots made it to the goal line and RB Mike Gillislee punched in the first of his two first half scores.
The New England defense got off to a good start. The starters were EDGE Trey Flowers, DT Malcom Brown, DT Alan Branch, EDGE Dont’a Hightower, LB Kyle Van Noy, LB Jordan Richards (!!), CB Stephon Gilmore, CB Malcolm Butler, SS Patrick Chung, FS Devin McCourty, and FS Duron Harmon. Kyle Van Noy wore the green dot to call the defensive plays.
On the Chiefs first play of the game, Jordan Richards forced a fumble, setting the Patriots up with a short field. White continued his strong running, finishing the half with 30 rushing yards on 6 attempts and a ferocious stiff arm.
Brady found TE Rob Gronkowski in the end zone, but had the touchdown grab called back. Some other officials question the decision to reverse the call without indisputable evidence. This resulted in a 14 point swing since the Chiefs stopped Mike Gillislee and the Patriots on 4th and 1 on the Chiefs 10 yard line, and then scored a touchdown on a surprisingly easy drive as the Patriots struggled to defend the Chiefs’ horizontal routes.
The Patriots responded with another strong drive, converting three straight 10+ yard plays. New England made it to the Chiefs 8 yard line and had another fourth-and-one, but opted to kick the field goal instead of go for it.
Kansas City went three-and-out on their next drive and the Patriots went right back to work as Danny Amendola collected a 22-yard gain, while Gillislee fielded the final five plays of the drive for 33 yards and a touchdown. The Patriots first four drives all reached inside the Chiefs’ 10-yard line.
The Patriots and Chiefs exchanged punts before Kansas City led one final drive before the half. Malcolm Butler was flagged for defensive pass interference inside the end zone, setting the Chiefs up for a 1st-and-goal from the 1-yard line. Alex Smith found RB Kareem Hunt for an easy touchdown catch with Jordan Richards in coverage.
The Chiefs get the ball after the half with a chance for a double-whammy score.