Red Zone

Halftime observations: Patriots 14, Chiefs 6

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith scrambled for a first down on a third-and-13 play in the first quarter of Saturday’s game.
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith scrambled for a first down on a third-and-13 play in the first quarter of Saturday’s game. deulitt@kcstar.com

Here are five halftime thoughts from Gillette Stadium, where the Chiefs trail the New England Patriots 14-6 in their AFC divisional-round playoff game.

1. The Patriots look nothing like the team that lost in the regular-season finale to the Miami Dolphins. The offense is sharp, and Brady — who is primarily working out of the shotgun — is in a rhythm.

2. The only way to get Brady out of this rhythm is to get pressure on him, and the Chiefs have done a poor job of that. They’re rotating five outside linebackers, and none of them are getting consistent pressure on Brady.

3. Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski have been banged up all week, but the Chiefs haven’t been able to consistently cover either. They’ve combined for nine catches, 92 yards and a touchdown.

4. The Chiefs’ offense has not been terribly effective. The passing play-calling has been too cute at times, and the deep ball has not been there.

5. The Chiefs need to try to get the running game going on power and gap plays. They’ve actually had some decent success running the ball in the first half, and it would be interesting to see what happens if they see it through.

  Comments