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Coach T’s Corner: NFL In-Depth Breakdown Patriots vs Chiefs, Betting Analysis

The inevitable happened as Week 4 of the NFL season began. The Titans’ organization had nine positive COVID tests to start the week. The NFL decided to postpone their game with the Steelers for a couple of days. After two more positive tests, the NFL has moved the game to a week later in the season. It was only a matter of time before this happened, and frankly it is surprising that three weeks were played before it did.

The rest of the league is scheduled to play as scheduled. The game of the week in Week 4 features the (3-0) Chiefs against the (2-1) Patriots. The Chiefs lead the all-time series 19-16-3. Although, New England’s long-time coach Bill Belichick has the lead over Kansas City’s coach Andy Reid, 7-3. The Patriots do not want to fall too far behind their undefeated division-rival Bills as the Chiefs look to stay undefeated and in charge of the AFC.

Patrick Mahomes of the Chiefs celebrates in the Chiefs vs Patriots NFL game.
Rob Carr/Getty Images/AFP

The Patriots vs Chiefs game features the New England Patriots traveling to Kansas City on Sunday at 4:25 p.m. ET. The city of Kansas City is allowing 17,000 fans to attend at Arrowhead Stadium.

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Patriots vs Chiefs Betting Analysis


You can draw many similarities between the QBs of these two storied organizations. They both have been the MVP of the league. They both can hurt you with their arm or their legs. And one that I think is overlooked, is how they both play the game with a child-like enjoyment. It is fun to watch these two play the most-important position on the field with so much joy.


“Man, he’s changing the game. I think he’s shining light on the new wave of quarterbacks. It’s just fun to watch,” Newton said of Mahomes. Mahomes has drawn praise from the entire league and Newton is the latest to add to the narrative. The Chiefs knew exactly what they had in Mahomes and paid him this offseason like the best QB in the league (or better yet — the best athlete ever). Mahomes signed a record-breaking 10-year deal worth $503 million, making it the largest contract in sports history.

Newton signed a one-year contract with the Patriots that includes a $1.05 million dollar base salary with the opportunity to earn $7.5 million through incentives. That is a huge difference for players who both have won the MVP award and been to a Super Bowl.

Here is a look at the latest Super Bowl Odds

Newton’s Future

Belichick and the Patriots are smart when it comes to building a team — that is an understatement. They knew Newton’s biggest issue the past two seasons has been his health. He only played in two games in the 2019 season. In the 2018 season, he played through injury and played in 14 games. There is no doubt though, that when Newton is healthy he is a top-tier quarterback.

Now at the age of 31 Newton has more than ever to play for. The Patriots took a chance by only signing him to a one-year deal. If he plays well, which he has, he could be in line for a big deal, which could come from another team. Newton has all the financial reasons to want to lead his Patriots to a victory over Mahomes and the Chiefs.

The Patriots have a few options when it comes to Newton. They could take a chance and sign him to an extension sooner rather than later. This would give them a good price because he still hasn’t proved he can stay healthy and play at a high level for an entire season. The other option is to wait and see.

This could mean Newton gets hurt and doesn’t play well. Or it could mean he upsets the $500 million man and the undefeated Chiefs on his way to a career year. That would mean the Patriots would need to pay Newton big money to return for the 2021 season.

Chiefs’ Future

The Chiefs had no real options when it came to Mahomes. They knew they had the best player at the most important position and needed to pay him and keep him around for a long time. The deal with Mahomes is hard to fully understand but in short, they are not paying a bulk of the money until later.

This allowed the organization to also hand out contract extensions to All-Pro TE Travis Kelce, All-Pro DE Chris Jones, and WR Sammy Watkins. These deals actually saved the Chiefs almost $10 million in cap space, which allowed them to sign their draft picks. The Chiefs’ front office made some smart moves starting with the deal they handed Mahomes.

The Chiefs are hoping by signing Mahomes to a long-term deal they will get other players to take pay cuts to play for the “dynasty.” This has been called the “Patriots discount.” Year after year the Patriots would sign players under their market value because that player knew they had a better chance of being properly used and to win a Super Bowl. Then the player’s perceived value would skyrocket the next time he hit free agency.

Patriots’ Keys to Victory

The last time the Patriots played at Arrowhead was in the 2018 AFC Championship Game. Using the only proven formula to beat the Chiefs, Tom Brady led the Patriots to a 37-31 overtime victory. The formula is to control the ball and to score a lot of points. The Patriots dominated the time-of-possession — 43:59 to 20:53.

Ball Control and Points

The games New England has won this year controlled the clock for over 34 minutes. New England is leading the league in rushing through three games and the Chiefs rank 27th at stopping the run. New England has built a team that could successfully control the clock and keeps Mahomes and the Chiefs’ dynamic offense off the field.

“Ball control and points. You know that” Patriots running backs coach Ivan Fears said. “Let’s get the points and let’s control the ball; I don’t care how we do it. Dink-and-dunk, quarterback sneak, I don’t give a (darn). Just get it done.”

The Patriots are averaging 29 points per game. They have scored 11 touchdowns which ranks them in a fourth-place tie in the NFL. They have been explosive in their own right and will need to be able to score to keep up with the Chiefs who are averaging 30.3 points a game.

Man-to-Man: Dime Package

The New England Patriots played man-to-man coverage on 80% of their defensive snaps against the Chiefs last year. They switch up their man schemes, playing a cover-7, cover-0, cover-1, and others. These are all types of man-to-man where the defense plays with what the extra safety is doing during the play. The Patriots played a coverage called “one-double” on Tyreek Hill in their playoff win. New England also likes to play a man-match type of man-to-man to help against crossing routes.

They will need Stephon Gilmore to get back to his Defensive MVP statues if they want to win. In four games against the Chiefs, Gilmore has given up five catches for 84 yards when he was the closest defender. Gilmore needs to take Sammy Watkins out of the game and allow the Patriots to mix up coverage schemes on the rest of the Chiefs’ skilled receivers. This will allow them to play the “one-double” scheme on Hill and Kelce.

I expect the Patriots to sit in their Dime package. This means they will play with six defensive backs and one linebacker. The Patriots will want to have as much speed on the field for many reasons, one is to cover Kelce with a faster DB. They may dare the Chiefs to run by putting two safeties back as Belichick used to do against Peyton Manning. For a better idea of what I am talking about check out this article that has videos of all the different schemes the Patriots use. Patriots Game Plan: Pats Planning to Slow Down Mahomes on Both Sides of the Ball

Chiefs’ Keys to Victory

The Chiefs use pre-snap motion to help their speed get leverage on the defense. This motion also allows Mahomes to get a read on what defense he is facing. They beat teams because they have some serious speed and skill around Mahomes. It’s the college football approach; get you guys the ball in space and let them do the rest. No team can stop all the weapons and keep Mahomes from extending the play and finding the weak spot in the defense for four quarters.

Stopping the Run

The Chiefs are going to see a lot of zone reads and runs from under center. They did not show they were up to stopping the run against Baltimore but did enough against the pass to win the game. They gave up 175 yards to the Ravens at a 7.5 YPC clip. The Chiefs’ run-defense ranks 30th in Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric through three weeks. They do not need to be great against the run, but they need to get off the field on some third downs and get the ball back into Mahomes’ hands.

Taking Care of the Ball

The Patriots are second in the NFL with +4 in the turnover margin. New England has been great at winning the turnover battle for the past two decades. This is the type of game New England will win if they can get a few takeaways and not turn the ball over. So, it is of the utmost importance to take care of the ball for the Chiefs. If they take what New England gives them and do not turn it over they can control this game for a victory.

Patriots vs Chiefs Betting Analysis

Team Point Spread Money Line Over/Under Team Totals
Patriots +7 +250 52½ 23
Chiefs -7 -300 52½ 30

Money Line: Chiefs -300 (3-0) | Patriots +250 (2-1)

After Monday nights’ win over the Ravens, I do not think I will be betting against the Chiefs to win a game. They are never out of a game with Mahomes. I doubt they will win all their games but it is going to be hard to predict when they will lose. I do think the Patriots present a nice matchup for them to lose a game but I wouldn’t bet on it.

Point Spread: Chiefs -7 | Patriots +7

I feel about as confident betting against Belichick as seven-point dogs, as I do betting against the Chiefs to win. Since 2006, New England is 20-6 ATS as an underdog. It is only the third time in 18 years the Patriots are seven-point underdogs. I’ll take the points and hope the Patriots can slow Mahomes enough to make this interesting.

Over/Under 52½ points: Chiefs (3-0) | Patriots (2-1)

I like the over of 52½ because the NFL is trending towards the over this year (60-38). I think it will be a close game and New England is going to have to score a lot of points to keep up.

Final Score: KC 31 – NE 27

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