Brady struggles as Chiefs rout Patriots 41-14
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Asked about the quarterback situation in New England, coach Bill Belichick replied with a disgusted look.
This has been one rough start for Tom Brady and the Patriots.
The two-time league MVP threw a pair of interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown, and also lost a costly fumble in a 41-14 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday night.
It was the fourth straight clunker for Brady, who was pulled in the fourth quarter with the game well out of reach. Rookie backup Jimmy Garroppolo finished things off, going 6 of 7 for 70 yards and a touchdown pass to Rob Gronkowski.
“They just didn’t play very well and Kansas City played well,” Belichick said. “That’s a bad combination. We all have to do a better job.”
As for his late-game substitution?
“Just wanted to play everybody,” Belichick said.
Brady finished 14 of 23 for 159 yards and a touchdown, and is now averaging just 197 yards per game. He is completing 59 percent of his passes, his worst rate in 14 years as a starter.
“It was just a bad performance by everybody,” Brady said. “We need to make sure we never have this feeling again. We’ve got to figure out what we have to do better.”
Jamaal Charles returned from an ankle injury to score three touchdowns for Kansas City (2-2). Knile Davis ran for 107 yards, Travis Kelce caught eight passes for 93 yards and a score, and Alex Smith threw for 248 yards and three TDs.
“Some nights things come together,” Smith said. “Guys execute and you take advantage.”
Charles said he was a bit sore after missing last week’s win in Miami.
“Coach said he was going to look for me, and see how it feels during the game,” he said, “and I guess I started feeling like myself. He didn’t want to take me out.”
The Chiefs forced the Patriots (2-2) to air it out by stuffing Shane Vereen and Stevan Ridley. And when Brady dropped back, their front seven ran roughshod over their suspect offensive line.
It hardly helped the Patriots’ offense that it was trying to operate on the same night Chiefs fans were trying to reclaim the record for loudest outdoor sports venue. The record was set in the first half, when Guinness World Records noted a noise level of 142.2 decibels — breaking the mark of 137.6 that the Seattle Seahawks’ fans had set last season.
“My ears are still ringing,” coach Andy Reid said with a smile.
Charles gave the Chiefs a lead with his first-quarter touchdown plunge, and then extended it with a 5-yard TD catch in the second quarter. Cairo Santos added a 22-yard field goal just before half.
The field goal came after the Chiefs were bailed out by a defensive penalty. They had been stopped short on a pass play with 8 seconds left, but the penalty gave them a second chance.
Kansas City had 303 yards of first-half offense, the most against any Belichick-coached team.
“We need to do everything better,” he said.
Charles added his third touchdown of the game early in the second half, taking a short pass in the flat and stumbling into the end zone. He appeared to grab his hamstring on the way down and was met by trainers as he exited the field. After a brief trip to the locker room where he received an IV, Charles logged a few more carries before his night was done.
By that point, the game was pretty much done, too.
Brady threw a 44-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter to Brandon LaFell, who slipped the grasp of cornerback Marcus Cooper to reach the end zone. But he was picked off by Husain Abdullah later in the half, and Abdullah returned the interception 39 yards for a touchdown.
Abdullah was flagged afterward for unsportsmanlike conduct, but the devout Muslim said it had nothing to do with dropping to his knees in prayer. He said the penalty came because he slid to his knees. The lesson learned? “Stop before you drop,” Abdullah said.
NOTES: Brady now needs 60 yards passing to reach 50,000 for his career. ... Chiefs WR Donnie Avery left the game with a strained groin. ... Kansas City is 5-1 against New England at Arrowhead Stadium. ... LaFell finished with six catches for 119 yards.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL