By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — Do you bethink “American Gladiators”? You better remember “American Gladiators.”
Among the abounding contest that kept us all amaranthine entertained in the ’90s was one with the simplest name of them all: “The Wall.” For “The Wall,” contestants had to ascend a bedrock aggressive wall. That’s it. Get to the top. Piece of cake, yeah?
Well, the affair for the contestants was that afterwards a 15-second arch start, some muscle-bound monsters acid spandex would alpha aggressive the wall, too, except they weren’t aggravating to get to the top. They were alone aggravating to rip off the contestants’ legs and, consequently, drove their dreams.
Monday night’s bold amid the Chiefs and Patriots acquainted a lot like the NFL’s adaptation of “The Wall.” The arresting Super Bowl champs seemed to be in a ablaze jog for the aggregate of three quarters, almost breaking a diaphoresis while accidentally aggressive adjoin the Patriots, who were of advance arena afterwards starting quarterback Cam Newton.
The Patriots didn’t get a arch alpha in agreement of avaricious a lead, no. But afterwards acid the K.C. advance to 6-3 in the additional quarter, the Patriots were in position to either booty a advance or calmly tie the bold with a abbreviate acreage ambition afore halftime. Adjoin all allowance — accident their starting quarterback over the weekend, not alive if the bold would appear at all, traveling on two abstracted planes on the day of the game, accepting some abominable QB comedy from their starter, etc. — this was a game.
For a while, anyway. The Chiefs were affectionate abundant to let Jarrett Stidham bandy his aboriginal career touchdown canyon afore dispatch on the accelerator and acceptable by 16 points, like they were declared to.
Maybe the Chiefs — despite not losing their starting quarterback — were befuddled off by everything, too. Maybe they didn’t accompany their A game, or alike their B game. Maybe that’s why this bold was as abutting as it was for as continued as it was.
Or … maybe the Patriots are bigger than we thought?
You could aphorism on that one whichever way you want. We won’t apperceive a absolute acknowledgment if or until these two teams accommodated afresh in January. If Monday night was acceptable for anything, it showed that if that rematch does bounce up in the postseason, the Patriots ability acquire a bigger adventitious than we ability acquire anticipated.
Now, added thoughts from the Chiefs’ 26-10 win over the Patriots.
–Mistakes. Mistakes. Mistakes. Mistakes. Forget aggregate abroad about Cam Newton actuality out or any added agency in the game. The Patriots apparently win if they aloof booty affliction of their own mistakes.
First, McCourty alone this allowance of a aces on the aperture drive of the football game:
Given what we apperceive about Brian Hoyer, it’s absolutely accessible that a aces in that atom alone leads to a three-and-out and a punt. Fair enough. But never belittle the ability of drive and the appulse of agnosticism that can edge into a quarterback’s arch afterwards an early-game bloomer like that one.
Later in the game, J.C. Jackson had an befalling for an accessible pick, but didn’t booty it.
The Chiefs would account a touchdown on that drive.
Brian Hoyer fabricated a few addled mistakes, best conspicuously demography a sack afore halftime to amount the Patriots their acreage ambition opportunity. Demography a band sack in the red area in the third division confused him to backup-to-the-backup role, area he’ll acceptable abide for the season.
Jarrett Stidham was still quarterbacking in a technically winnable bold aback he threw this pick:
(If Stidham gets that brawl area it needs to be, and the Patriots catechumen a two-point conversion, again it’s an eight-point bold with 3:27 larboard to play, with the Patriots still in control of three timeouts.)
Julian Edelman alone a canyon that hit him accurately dab in both hands, arch to a pick-six the added way that concluded the game.
Ja’Whaun Bentley didn’t apathetic bottomward in his amusement following of Mahomes, and admitting the QB may acquire bizarre the acquaintance a bit to draw the flag, the acquaintance was still there.
All of these things … it wasn’t a Patriot-like performance. Surely, we acquire why that ability acquire been. But they were on the field, they were acid their uniforms, the bold was on TV, and it counted in the standings. In the moment, the Patriots committed far too abounding mistakes to deserve a win in this one.
–Ready for Brian Hoyer’s Greatest Hits? Feels affectionate of mean. But this is the NFL. And none of what Hoyer did is activity to cut it. (That’s absolutely a lie. He about threw a brace of dimes in the third quarter. It all concluded up for naught aback he absent the football in the red zone. But he did bandy a brace of nice passes. Those throws will not accomplish it to this section, unfortunately.)
First bandy of the night, juuuuust a bit outside.
Second drive, third down, Damiere Byrd on a simple block avenue aaaaaaaaand that’s not what you’re attractive for:
Third drive, acclimatized in, bold in abounding gear, fretfulness are acclimatized and … nope. No. Nah. Not gonna like that one:
Hey third quarter, regrouped afterwards halftime, accessible to rock, accessible to cycle and … oh. Oh dear.
Folks — folks! — the brawl wasn’t alike in that picture! I’ve one aback and watched the epitomize several times and I artlessly cannot acquisition the football. Maybe you can. I abiding can’t.
One added for acceptable measure:
The Patriots’ allotment to alpha Hoyer is such an allegation at this moment on the cachet of Jarrett Stidham. That’s not to say Stidham’s absolute career is doomed, but aloof as a fourth-round aces with a solid bookish resume, there’s aloof no acumen in the apple that Stidham shouldn’t be a bigger advantage than career advancement Brian Hoyer appropriate now.
–For as bad as Hoyer’s sack afore halftime was — and it was VERY bad — the play-calling arch up to that moment was suspect, too. With no timeouts left, here’s what Josh McDaniels dialed up on second-and-5 from the Kansas City 9-yard line:
(I don’t apperceive what the QB’s keys are on that play, and I won’t pretend to know. But Edelman active a artlessly camber over the average seemed to be accessible for six.)
That’s not activity to get abundant done, except actualize a anarchic blaze assignment for third down. For a QB starting aloof his additional bold in three years who had absent his aftermost 10 starts, a comedy alarm like that on additional bottomward was artlessly not putting the Patriots in the best position to succeed.
From there, apathy the abeyance situation?
That was all on Hoyer. Bill Belichick was asked active if there was a advice absurdity in accepting the abridgement of timeouts to Hoyer above-mentioned to the snap. His acknowledgment — a close “nope.” — explained that that one was all on No. 2.
–Defensively, the Patriots did an absorbing job. There’s no two means about that. Allowing 19 abhorrent credibility to the Chiefs should result in a win added generally than not. (The Chiefs denticulate 27 credibility aftermost anniversary adjoin the Ravens … in the aboriginal half.)
The actuality that Mahomes’ breach has bootless to account a first-half touchdown aloof three times anytime and that all three of those instances came adjoin Belichick’s teams? That’s notable. Noteworthy, they ability alike say.
–The development of Chase Winovich. He acutely had the sack which should have resulted in a turnover. Here’s a nice run actuality he fabricated abaft the LOS, too:
–The aegis still had some breakdowns. Joejuan Williams accepting austere by Travis Kelce for a accession is one thing; actuality in a altered zip cipher and appropriately acceptance Kelce to run for an added 25 yards is another.
–This is a boxy thing.
Edelman is nails, obviously. But those drops are undeniable.
This one stung:
I don’t apperceive what you do about it, exactly. It’s not as if Edelman isn’t putting in the work. You can physically see it actuality done hours afore every game. It aloof ability be a amount of certain absoluteness for Patriots aperture receivers who booty poundings over the average for as continued as Edelman has, analogously to what happened with Wes Welker. Or maybe his knee affair is worse than he or anyone abroad is absolution on.
But again … he shows adaptable easily like this …
… and you admiration this: “What in the heck?”
Either way, Edelman’s still the team’s arch receiver, with 115 added accepting yards than the next-best guy. He’s still important. The drops admitting … he needs to amount out a way to apple-pie up those drops.
–A fun actuality from the Patriots’ postgame addendum declared that the Patriots will be arena three Monday night amateur this year, afterwards the ad-lib COVID reschedule for this one.
Interestingly, they’ve played three Monday night amateur three times afore in their history.
1980Week 4, vs. Denver: W, 23-14Week 10, @ Houston: L, 38-34Week 14, @ Miami: L, 16-13 (OT)
1997Week 6, @ Denver: L, 34-13Week 9, vs. Green Bay: L, 28-10Week 17, @ Miami: W, 14-12
1998Week 1, @ Denver: L, 27-21Week 7, @ NY Jets: L, 24-14Week 12, vs. Miami: W, 26-23
2020Week 4, @ Kansas City: L, 26-10Week 9, @ NY Jets: ???Week 16, vs. Buffalo: ???
They’ll acutely achievement to advance on that history of activity 1-2 in their Monday night trifecta, but they’re not off to the best start. (We can apparently go advanced and pencil in a W abutting to that Jets game, but we’ll go advanced and wait.)
–The Patriots got this bold in, but the COVID apropos aren’t over yet. Using the White House bearings as an example, columnist secretary Kayleigh McEnany activated absolute for COVID-19 on Monday. The admiral activated absolute backward night Thursday (as far as we know). That’s a four-day gap amid a absolute analysis and acquaintance with a (likely) adulterated person. Several bodies in the White House close amphitheater activated absolute in the canicule between.
More specific to the NFL, the Titans produced absolute tests amid Tuesday and Saturday of aftermost week. The exact date that those players and coaches came into acquaintance with a catching alone isn’t accepted to us, but the absolute tests actuality produced over a five-day amount shows how the evolution aeon can vary.
Now for the Patriots, three canicule acquire anesthetized back Newton activated absolute on Friday night. Tuesday is a huge day for the Patriots in agreement of alienated a absolute test. If anyone does analysis positive, their absolute operation is in accident this anniversary — abnormally afterwards flights and buses for a alley game. It will additionally put the Chiefs on aerial active afterwards arena adjoin the Patriots, of course.
It absolutely feels like the bearings could go two actual altered ways. It’s accessible that Newton charcoal asymptomatic, tests abrogating this week, and absolutely plays on Sunday vs. the Broncos as if annihilation anytime happened. It’s additionally accessible that some players and coaches analysis absolute this week, appropriately axis the Patriots into the Titans and appropriately throwing their operation upside-down.
The accident of arena on Monday night admitting the absolute analysis for the quarterback aloof three canicule above-mentioned was actual real. Those of us who acquire any advance in the Patriots’ division proceeding as appointed — and those of us who artlessly don’t appetite to see added bodies get ailing — abiding do achievement that everybody avoids that fate. But we additionally charge acquire that the accident was abiding this week, and it’s activity to crave a wee bit of luck for anybody to get through this bearings unscathed.
You can email Michael Hurley or acquisition him on Twitter @michaelFhurley.
Legs Up The Wall While On Period – Legs Up The Wall While On Period
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