The other is that they've completely dominated their opponents when it comes to the turnover battle. During those 4 victories against .500 or better teams, they amassed 15 turnovers (4 fumble recoveries and 11 interceptions). When you look at their 11 game winning streak you will see a total of 22 interceptions and 6 fumble recoveries. Of their 22 interceptions, 2 were brought back for touchdowns.
If you watch a decent amount of Patriots' games, you know the key to them not giving away a game is ball protection. Yes, avoiding the dreaded 3 and out and not giving up a circus catch on 3rd or 4th and long, has also been key in the playoffs, but the real key to victory is not having bad turnovers. This will undoubtedly be the key to today's game as the Chiefs have been relying on turnovers during their winning streak.
TAKE WHAT THEY GIVE US- As is every Patriot fan, I'm pumped to see Julian Edelman back on the field. While I can't wait to see him play and signal first down when he makes a huge play, I hope McDaniels and Brady don't try to force the ball to him. While playing without Jules for the past couple of months has been rough, it has given some other players the opportunity to gain some Brady trust. Hopefully, with an almost full complement of offensive weapons and an offensive line that has had some time to heal and prepare for their opponent, the offense will move the ball down the field.
LAFELL- Brandon LaFell needs to have a good game today. The Chiefs' defense has been great at taking away the middle of the field. LaFell is one heck of an athlete who has the ability to make some amazing catches on the sideline. Hopefully, those are the plays that he is put into position to make today. While he can completely outrun his opponent down the field, he doesn't seem to have the right timing with Brady to make the deep pass happen in a game. Whether it's a case of timing or Brady underthrowing the ball, it really doesn't matter. The deep pass requires a lot of time in the pocket for Brady. If he gets a lot of time in the pocket, then there is likely some extra help lurking to turn a big Patriots' play into that dreaded interception.
SPECIAL TEAMS- As always, the Patriots have a better special teams unit than their opponent. Last week the Chiefs started off their game with a huge kickoff return. Today, Gostkowski needs to show off his leg and put it through the endzone.
DEFENSE- I'm sure Matt Patricia has an incredible game plan ready for today. Hopefully, the team executes it to perfection. Lately the one flaw I've picked up on has been not going all out to finish a play. When Alex Smith is within an arms reach, he needs to go down. Having had the best season of his career, today needs to be reality check time. With a relatively healthy defense, the Patriots need to make some plays. Hopefully, Chandler Jones' enthusiasm lead to a great game and not some untimely penalties. On the season the Patriots have yet to get called for roughing the passer, hopefully they don't bail out the Chief's with penalties today.
Links to some relevant posts:
A LOOK AT BRADY'S TARGETS THIS SEASON
PATRIOTS' OFFENSIVE STARTERS- 2015
WHAT SUCKED FOR THE PATRIOTS TONIGHT