Patriots 10, Chiefs 3, Half: Rob Gronkowski, Defense Help Patriots Take 10-3 Lead Into Half

The Patriots will take a 10-3 lead into the half after bouncing back with a strong second quarter.

Things did not start off terribly well. With the very first play of the drive, Tom Brady was hit from behind trying to escape pressure, fumbling the ball away well into Kansas City territory. The turnover would not help Kansas City build their 3-0 lead, however, with a 9-yard sack at midfield stalling the drive after a 28-yard pass seemingly had the Chiefs rolling. 

The Patriots would endure one more series of offensive futility, allowing two sacks and punting out of their own end zone before finally turning things around. An all-important 3-and-out left the Chiefs giving the ball back to the Patriots at the 15-yard line, giving Tom Brady a chance to find his groove. 

As per usual, it was the tight ends that helped Brady settle down. After targeting Aaron Hernandez with the first two passes of the drive for 22 yards, a couple of runs from BenJarvus Green-Ellis set up a 2nd-and-7 from midfield. With the pocket collapsing around him, Brady stepped up and took advantage of a blown coverage, finding Rob Gronkowski wide open over the middle. With space to work in, Gronkowski took off towards pay dirt, barely keeping his balance inbounds as he thwarted the best attempts of the KC secondary to stop him from reaching the end zone.

The Chiefs went back to work, with Tyler Palko doing a surprising number on the Patriots' secondary as he brought Kansas City into New England territory once again. But the Patriots' defense managed to come up with a big play when they needed it once again, as Kyle Arrington plucked a tipped pass from his shoetops for the interception, bringing it just shy of midfield on the return.

While Danny Woodhead would provide some running success where BenJarvus Green-Ellis had not been able to, the Chiefs managed to pick up a big stop in the red zone as Woodhead had a pass knocked--or more accurately ripped away from him at the goal line by a diving defender. With fourth down coming up, New England took the three points and went into the half up by a touchdown.

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