It’s only natural.
Regardless of how much success the New England Patriots have had, their players are human. And hearing constant references to their no longer being a top-level team and that their dynasty is coming to an end does have an impact.
‘Each (Patriot) team is different, so you develop your character and how you go about the season differently’
“Yeah, I thank, with adversity, it brings a chip,” safety Devin McCourty told Alex Marvez and Ed McCaffrey on The Opening Drive. “We lost five games on the road. You keep hearing those things, I think it does build a little chip on your shoulder.
“I think this season has been that little chip on the shoulder for each guy in that locker room.”
“But each team’s different. So I think, when people think of the Patriots, they always think of the three teams that won in the early 2000s or the previous two Super Bowl teams. Each team’s different, so you develop your character and how you go about the season differently. And I think this season has been that little chip on the shoulder for each guy in that locker room.”
‘There is a reason why they’re in the top of the league in every offensive category’
On Sunday, the Patriots face the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs are favored, largely because of the enormous challenge New England’s defense is expected to have against quarterback Patrick Mahomes and the rest of Kansas City’s many offensive weapons. How do you stop them?
“You don’t,” McCourty said. “We’re going in there (Tuesday) and start working on the plan, but offenses like that, you don’t go and just take away everything out there. I mean, there is a reason why they’re in the top of the league in every offensive category, because they’re good. They have a lot of good players out there. Andy Reid has been a great offensive play-caller for years. So, to me, it comes to competing. You’ve just got to go out there and compete. You’ve got to try to try to make plays on one-on-one situations.
‘Nothing is going to be perfect against a team like this’
“You’ve got to try to execute whatever game plan we come up with to the best of our ability, to execute out there because nothing is going to be perfect against a team like this. So whatever it is we decide to do game-plan-wise, we’ve got to go execute that.”
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