By: Kevin Ebert
In a game with so much hype you’d expect it to be televised in January, the game really lived up to the hype. Just as you would expect between juggernaut offenses in the Chiefs and Patriots, both teams only combined for a single punt and 83 points. In the past few weeks, Patrick Mahomes has gone from the rookie that took over for Alex Smith to the next QB sensation in the fans eyes. I, for one, do not feel the same way. Mahomes has certainly proven he is a good QB, but this is the game I was waiting for to really see. The Patriots always have a way of exposing stud players. They did just that to Mahomes in the first half. Mahomes didn’t throw a TD and had 2 INT’s in the first half, trailing the Patriots 24-9.
In the second half, he came more to life and the Chiefs even held the lead nearing the end but I never got the sense they took over the game. Down 40-33 with a little over 3 minutes to go, Tyreek Hill went deep on the first play. A 75 yard touchdown pass on the first play from scrimmage which tied the game, but did something nobody likes to do. It put the game into the hands of Tom Brady and Bill Belichick with 3 minutes left. Watching this happen, tied, I knew the game was over. The Patriots offense methodically moved down the field, eating every second of the clock. With 51 seconds left, the Patriots threw a 39 yard pass to a wide open Gronkowski from the KC 48 and that was all she wrote. They ran the clock all the way and Gostkowski nailed a 28 yard field goal as time expired.
What I think makes the Patriots so different from the rest of the league is their ability to pull games out. Their strategy is impeccable. Take, for example, the pass to Gronkowski. There was 51 seconds left on the clock and the pass was into obvious field goal range. My thought was, "Why not let him score at that point?" You look back at the 2012 Super Bowl where the Patriots let Ahmad Bradshaw to walk into the end-zone because if they hadn’t, the Giants could just kill the clock and hit an extra point to win. I saw this as the exact same situation. As much as I want to believe that Mahommes and the Chiefs are the kings of the AFC, I can’t. Until a team goes into Foxboro and takes down the Patriots, they will still be the kings.
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