New England Patriots vs. Kansas City Chiefs Offense Analysis
The AFC Championship game between the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs will feature two of the best offenses in the league. One team is led by a quarterback in his 40’s, while the other has a first year starter under center. While they have polar opposite leaders, both offenses have been dynamic this year. Here’s what you can expect from the Patriots vs. Kansas City Chiefs Offense Preview.
The Patriots, as they’ve tended to do for the past handful of years now, slumped a little bit in the middle of the season. They had some duds, and brought out the annual cycle of pundits questioning whether or not they were over the hill. But as they always do they came alive at the end of the season, scoring 38 in their regular season finale and then dominating the Chargers in the divisional round.
The win over the Chargers was one of the most dominant offensive performances in recent playoff history, and showed Tom Brady still has plenty left in the tank. The Patriots took advantage of all of their plus matchups, and shredded the Chargers for 35 first half points. Their running game worked well with Sony Michel, and James White was a menace catching passes out of the backfield. White caught ten passes in the first half alone, an NFL playoff record, and should be able to feast in one on ones against the Chiefs’ weak linebacking corp here.
The real story of this Patriots offense was their offensive line play. Despite facing a productive Chargers pass rush led by Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram, Brady had all day to throw. Bosa and Ingram never laid a finger on him, and the whole O-line played lights out. It will be interesting to see if they can hold up similarly well against a tough Kansas City pass rush. I think Justin Houston and Dee Ford will end up getting home because the crowd noise will decrease the communication between members of the Patriots’ offensive line. But if they can play like they did against the Chargers, the Patriots’ offense will be in for a huge day.
It would be nearly impossible to say enough about this Chiefs offense. They were the most electric unit in the league the whole season, and Mahomes threw 50 touchdown passes in his first season as the starter. The first time these two teams met, back in Week 6, Mahomes threw four touchdowns and averaged ten yards per attempt, and I think he could have similar success here.
While the Patriots’ defense had a good game against the Chargers, that was only because they were able to get constant pressure on Philip Rivers. When Rivers had time to throw, he was actually ably to pick apart the Patriots’ secondary. I don’t think the Patriots will be able to get nearly as much pressure as they did against the Chargers for a couple reasons. First off, Mahomes’ offensive line is much better. Secondly, the crowd noise greatly impacted the Chargers’ offensive line, while the Chiefs will have it nice and quiet to communicate.
New England still doesn’t have any elite pass-rushers, and Mahomes should have plenty of time to get whatever he wants down the field. Damien Williams should be able to run all over this Patriots defense, and Tyreek Hill and Sammy Watkins should be able to burn them over the top just like Keenan Allen was able to. The Patriots’ defense got better at the end of the year, but that was mostly because they played a very easy schedule. Mahomes threw for over 5,000 yards this year, and won’t have much trouble here no matter what Bill Belichick throws at him.