FOXBORO (CBS) – The New England Patriots face a very unfamiliar, familiar foe Monday night.
While the Patriots have not seen the Kansas City Chiefs since 2008, the team is very familiar with their defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel, who held the same position in New England from 2001-04.
“Defensively, they’re very well coached. We’ve been around Romeo for a long time, so we have a decent understanding of what he does, but we haven’t played these guys in a while,” quarterback Tom Brady said Wednesday. They have some very good players, defensively, and we need a good week, so that we can go out there and be very well prepared and play with a lot of confidence, play with anticipation, and try to go out there and execute well.”
Of course with Crennel’s system in KC, the Patriots see a bit of themselves when watching the tape.
“It’s what we do on defense,” quipped Brady. “There’s a lot of familiarity, through training camp and every day in practice. It’s really a 3-4 defense, and they’re very fundamentally sound. You can see the things that they are coaching every single week. They line up, they’re very physical. They make it hard to run it. They have some very good corners, very experienced corners, athletic linebackers, so it’s a very good group. And because they are very well coached, they are rarely in a bad position.
“In order to make plays, you have to run good routes, make good throws — you got to pass protect against one of the best pass-rushers that we’ve faced in [Tamba] Hali. They have a very good group,” said Brady.
What has worked best for the Patriots offense this season is running out of the no-huddle. Sunday’s 36-17 win against the Jets is the latest example, with the offense struggling throughout the first half until they went with their hurry-up set.
But Brady did his best to put to rest any connection between the no-huddle and the offense’s success.
“We tried to run it against Dallas and didn’t score a lot of points and we tried to run it in Pittsburgh and didn’t score a lot of points,” said Brady. “To me, it’s more about the execution and the tempo of the game. I think if we execute well, whether we huddle or we don’t huddle, we’re going to be able to score points.”
“Sometimes when you go out there and try no-huddle and it doesn’t work, you say, ‘We’re not doing that any more. Let’s go back to huddling.’ And you guys think, ‘Oh, you didn’t do much no-huddle this game,’ and you’re saying, ‘There’s a reason, because it wasn’t working.’ If it works, you stay with it; If it doesn’t work, you move on.”
It worked against the Jets. We’ll find out Monday night if it works against Crennel and the Chiefs.
Tune in to the Patriots-Chiefs Monday Night showdown on 98.5 The Sports Hub. Pregame coverage begins at 5 pm, and after the game tune in to the postgame show on 98.5, and Patriots Fifth Quarter on My TV38.