Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots
When: 4:25 PM ET, Sunday, December 8, 2019
Where: Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, Massachusetts
Preview for Digital Sports Desk by Gracenote
FOXBORO – The New England Patriots’ bid for a perfect season slipped away in Week 9 and now they have lost their grip on the top overall seed for home-field advantage in the AFC playoffs. The Patriots will try to rebound from their second loss in four weeks and clinch their 11th consecutive postseason berth against the visiting Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday afternoon.
New England set an NFL record with its 17th consecutive 10-win season but it is only one game ahead of Buffalo in the AFC East after dropping a 28-22 decision at Houston on Sunday night that was not as close as the score indicated.
“We’re not any different than any team,” quarterback Tom Brady said of his team’s recent struggles. “At the same time, we’re in decent position here. Now we have to try to go beat a great football team at home, Kansas City.”
The Chiefs suffered a pair of narrow defeats to New England last season, including a 37-31 defeat that kept them from reaching the Super Bowl, but they have chance to win the AFC West title and end the Patriots’ 18-game home winning streak.
“As far as it looks, you’re going to have to go there to win at some point. It’s kind of been a thing where we came close last year,” quarterback Patrick Mahomes said of playing at Gillette Stadium. “It’s about trying to find the best way to do it.”
TV: 4:25 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Patriots -3. O/U: 48.5
ABOUT THE CHIEFS (8-4): Mahomes threw for a touchdown and ran for another in last week’s 40-9 drubbing of Oakland — the third time in four weeks he failed to eclipse 182 yards passing — but he torched New England for 647 yards and seven scores versus two interceptions last season. Kansas City is thin in the backfield with Darrel Williams going on injured reserve and Damien Williams (rib) still not practicing, leaving veteran LeSean McCoy and rookie Darwin Thompson to carry the load. Mahomes has elite weapons in speedster Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce, who needs 77 yards to become the first tight end with four straight 1,000-yard seasons. The Chiefs are a lowly 30th against the run, allowing 141.3 yards per game.
ABOUT THE PATRIOTS (10-2): New England’s offense continues to sputter and only two late touchdown passes from Brady last week enabled the team to surpass 20 points for the first time in the last four games. While Brady has 18 TD passes against six interceptions, he has barely completed more than 50 percent of his passes over the last three games and has not registered a quarterback rating of at least 100.0 since Week 5 at Washington. Julian Edelman remains Brady’s top target with 61 receptions and four scores over the past eight games, but running back Sony Michel has yet to hit 100 yards after eclipsing that mark twice versus Kansas City last season. The Patriots rank second against the pass at 163.5 yards allowed.
- Hill has 14 catches for 275 yards and four TDs in two regular-season matchups versus New England.
- Patriots RB James White scored twice and had a career-best 177 yards from scrimmage last week.
- Chiefs K Harrison Butker was named the AFC Special Teams Player of the Month.
PREDICTION: Chiefs 26, Patriots 23