After Super Bowl banner number five was unveiled to an amped-up Gillette Stadium crowd waving their Barstool Sports Roger Goodell towels, the New England Patriots were stunned by the Kansas City Chiefs. 42-27, on Thursday night in the NFL’s opening game.
The Chiefs had 537 total yards of offense on the night — the most yards given up in a single game in the era of Patriots head coach Bill Belichick.
Kansas City found the end zone six times in the game with help from running backs Kareem Hunt and Charcandrick West, who both came up big late in the game while the Patriots dealt with injuries to linebacker Dont’a Hightower (knee) and wide receiver Danny Amendola (head).
Even after Hunt fumbled to begin the game and his career, on the opening drive, Kansas City continuously pulled away throughout the four quarters. Hunt had 148 yards on 17 carries and caught five passes and had three of the away team’s six touchdowns.
Despite leading the game at halftime, 17-14, New England was stopped three separate times on fourth down, and quarterback Tom Brady was sacked three times with no touchdown passes.
New England did, however, have some shining moments early on in the game, and any questions about who would replace former Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount, [now with the Philadelphia Eagles] were answered by Mike Gillislee – who touched the ball 15 times for 45 yards and scored three touchdowns.
The Chiefs recorded three touchdown drives of 90 yards or more while quarterback Alex Smith completed 80 percent (28-for-35) of his passes for four touchdowns and threw for 368 yards.
In the fourth quarter, Chiefs All-Pro safety Eric Berry went down with an Achilles injury, was carted off the field and quickly ruled out for the rest of the game.
The Patriots (0-1) were simply outplayed by Kansas City (1-0) on their own home field, in front of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.
Even with the loss, there shouldn’t be any panic floating around in the minds of Patriots Nation.
The last time New England looked like a sloppy team was back in 2014 when they lost to none other than the Chiefs. But after that loss and people saying Brady was washed up, the team went on to the win the Super Bowl that year.
Brady finished the night completing 16 of his 36 passes for 267 yards.
Not-so fun fact: The Patriots had won their previous 87 games at home when leading at the half. Their last loss was Dec. 24, 2000 against the Miami Dolphins.
Reassuring fun fact: New England has lost the season opener three other times during the Tom Brady era in 2001, 2003 and 2014 — each year they won the Super Bowl.
Next Up: New England will need to leave this ugly loss behind them quick because they will travel to take on quarterback Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints in Week 2. Kickoff is set for 1:00 p.m.