Last night was supposed to be the coronation of the Patriots as perhaps the greatest dynasty in recent American sports history.
Coming off their glorious, or horrifying depending on your allegiances, comeback win in last year’s Super Bowl, the Pats added a bunch of talent to an already stacked roster.
They even had their iconic 2nd quarter score against the Falcons before the legendary comeback on their board before the game.
Patriots aren't forgetting about this anytime soon…… pic.twitter.com/opIlrU5qb0
— NFL Update (@MySportsUpdate) September 7, 2017
Many analysts claimed the Patriots were set to go undefeated this season after picking up players like Brandin Cooks, Stephon Gilmore, and Mike Gillislee, and keeping hold of most of the key players on their roster.
The night got off to a celebratory start for the Patriots as they unveiled a new banner with Mike Wahlberg addressing the crowd.
Look away, Falcons fans pic.twitter.com/jXioQEcH56
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 8, 2017
Gillette Stadium displayed the now-infamous score of last years’s Super Bowl when the Falcons held a 28-3 lead with 2:12 left in the 3rd quarter.
It was a pretty triumphant celebration of the Patriots’ 5th Super Bowl title since 2001 as they have dominated the NFL over the last fifteen years.
Then the actual game began.
It all started simply enough. The Patriots marched down the field and scored on the first drive of the game and looked nearly unstoppable.
Patriots' opening drive: pic.twitter.com/EIAjcgG2qp
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) September 8, 2017
Chiefs rookie running back Kareem Hunt then fumbled on his first professional play and it looked like the Patriots were going to run rampant over the Chiefs.
But it didn’t turn out that way. The Chiefs got a massive 4th down stop and turned around and marched down the field to tie the game at 7-7 and let everyone know this might actually be a game.
Then it really became a game. The teams traded punches for three quarters until the Chiefs took a 28-27 lead early in the 4th and held on for the rest of the game.
Alex Smith is outdueling Tom Brady in a shootout. I know. I can't believe it either.
— Carrington Harrison (@cdotharrison) September 8, 2017
In the end, the Chiefs won 42-27 in one of the most lopsided defeats of the Belichick era in New England. Alex Smith threw for 368 yards and 4 touchdowns and rookie Kareem Hunt made up for his fumble with 246 total yards and 3 touchdowns.
Chiefs have gained 536 yards, the most allowed by Patriots in the Bill Belichick era. Previous high: 507 yards by Denver in 2014 AFCCG
— Ben Volin (@BenVolin) September 8, 2017
It was a sobering defeat for the Patriots, who are not used to teams coming into Foxborough and putting up much of a fight. New England’s defense was completely inept, getting carved up by fucking Alex Smith and a rookie running back.
And while New Englanders may have taken this defeat hard, America was very happy to see persona (team) non grata go down in such brutal fashion.
Some took the opportunity to imagine an alternative history…
Never forgive the motherfucking Falcons for depriving us of this feeling but x1,000,000
— Tom Ley (@ToLey88) September 8, 2017
When the #Patriots get blown out, America rejoices.
— Indy SportsOne (@IndySportsOne) September 8, 2017
— shauna (@goldengateblond) September 8, 2017
Yeah… about those “16-0” predictions
Analysts: Patriots are going 16-0 this year.
— Stephen Frantz (@stevenski5) September 8, 2017
Settle down there, Lions fans
RT if your team has a better record than the #Patriots.
— Pride Of Detroit (@PrideOfDetroit) September 8, 2017
Even Sportscenter anchors got in on the action
— Robert Flores (@RoFlo) September 8, 2017