Scully's NFL Notebook: Patriots turn their season around

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November 18th, 2021

The New England Patriots stretched their win streak to four by routing Cleveland in Week 10. Despite opening the season with a 2-4 record, the Patriots control their fate in the AFC East with a pair of games remaining against Buffalo.

Their turnaround is among the topics in this week’s NFL Notebook.

Patriots coming

New England overhauled its roster during the offseason, turned the offense over to a rookie quarterback, and opened with a difficult schedule, sustaining losses to Dallas, New Orleans, and Tampa Bay in the first six weeks of the season.

Those experiences made the Patriots much stronger. While being led by a ferocious defense and an imposing offensive line, the Patriots have averaged nearly 38 points during their current four-game win streak.

It’s coming together for New England, which didn’t ask Mac Jones to do too much during the first half of the season.

Jones sliced and diced Cleveland last week, tossing three touchdowns, as he completed 19-of-23 passes, and he’s on pace to break Dak Prescott’s rookie completion rate record.

New England has emerged as a legitimate playoff contender due to Jones’ improved play.

Green Bay can lean upon defense

Aaron Rogers wasn’t sharp, tossing an interception and completing only 1-of-5 deep passes, and Aaron Jones left with a knee injury in the third quarter. It didn’t matter.

Green Bay kept rolling behind its third-ranked defense, shutting out Seattle in Week 10, and the Packers have covered nine straight games.

Since losing the opener 38-3, Green Bay’s defense has been dominant. New defensive coordinator Joe Barry installed a new culture, and the Packers have kept opponents in check, despite being injury-ridden.

Green Bay is now the top seed in the NFC.

This is the first time Rogers has had a top 10-ranked defense since winning the Super Bowl in 2011, which is a good omen for Cheeseheads.

Kansas City becomes trendy

Kansas City, which began the season with a 3-4 record, looked like its old self beating down Las Vegas on Sunday night.

Perhaps the Chiefs have turned a corner, winning for the third consecutive week, and the Kansas City bandwagon has become popular again.

We understand the love — the Chiefs were the preseason Super Bowl favorite — but remain skeptical.

They’ve played one good game. After being blown out by Tennessee in late October, Kansas City wasn’t sharp in narrow wins against the Giants and Green Bay (without Rogers) prior to Las Vegas.

Let’s see Kansas City prove it in Week 11.

Game of the Week

Dallas will be the litmus test for Kansas City’s three-game win streak.

Sun, November 21 2021, 9:25 PM

KC Chiefs






O 55.5

DAL Cowboys






U 55.5

After winning six straight, and covering the first seven games, the Cowboys received a wake-up call in Week 9, with a humbling double-digit home loss to Denver.

That set the tone for last week's impressive 43-3 victory over Atlanta, and Dallas brings an explosive offense to Kansas City.

It should be an exciting, high-scoring affair!