CBS Sports NFL analyst Boomer Esiason made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Monday ahead of the Patriots' Monday night matchup against the Chiefs. On paper, the Patriots have a strong advantage over the Chiefs, especially since Kansas City starting quarterback Matt Cassel will not play after requiring surgery to repair an injury to his right hand.
Backup quarterback Tyler Palko will start in Cassel's place. Palko has made 13 career passes in two years in the NFL and completed nine of them. He was ranked 31st out of 32 backup quarterbacks by Pro Football Weekly entering the season.
"This is a team that has no chance offensively," Esiason said of the Chiefs. "Offensively they're terrible. They get no big plays. They have guys that are capable of it. Dwayne Bowe, certainly, Steve Breaston are both capable players.
"But the fact that they're going to be playing with Tyler Palko tonight, he's going to make his first start as an NFL quarterback, leads me to believe that there's not going to be a lot of offense generated. On the other side, it's Romeo Crennel who's the defensive coordinator. I think he's not very creative. He just sits back. And I would imagine that Tom Brady should have one of his highest completion percentage nights assuming that the weather is going to be OK, which I think it is."
Brady certainly seemed excited to face the Kansas City defense, as he smiled when asked about playing Crennel's defense during an interview last week. The Chiefs enter Monday's game following two tough losses. Their most recent loss came against the Broncos, as Tim Tebow completed just 2-of-8 passes but still completed a 56-yard touchdown pass to lead Denver to a 17-10 win.
The week before the Denver loss, Kansas City was roughed up by the previously winless Dolphins and suffered a 31-3 loss. Because of the Chiefs' recent record, Esiason noted that motivation could be an issue for the Patriots.
"I would always think that when you're a coach and you're playing against a team like Kansas City who comes in, doesn't have a great record and has not played great the last few weeks, who got beat by Tim Tebow, you sit there and you say to yourself, 'How do I motivate these players? How do I get them at the level they were last week?' " Esiason said. "I can't imagine that Andre Carter is going to have 4½ sacks tonight. I just, I don't see it happening because because I don't see that fever pitch is going to be there for the Patriots, but I do think that the Patriots should run away with the game offensively, which will make their defensive performance a little bit easier to deal with."
Following are more highlights from the conversation.
On what it's like to play defense for a team like Kansas City: "There are some players on Kansas City that I would imagine if you were a defensive player for the Kansas City Chiefs, you'd be really, really frustrated. The one thing I will say about Rex Ryan's defense, Rob Ryan's defense, they do a lot of different things. They bring blitzes. Dick LeBeau's defense in Pittsburgh, a lot of blitzes. I think defensive players love playing in that kind of style for the Patriots and for the Kansas City Chiefs who I think are worse than the Patriots when it comes to being totally vanilla. It's all about keeping the ball in front of them, and if you're just patient, I would think that a guy like Tom Brady will have many opportunities for big plays tonight."
On the way the playoff picture is shaping up for the Patriots: "When you take a look at the Patriots' schedule and you take a look at the Pittsburgh Steelers' schedule and the Houston Texans' schedule, the toughest team that either one of those three teams have to play is on the road at San Francisco and that's the Pittsburgh game. The rest of the teams' games are all going to be underdogs to those three teams.
"I think you're looking at one, two and three. That's going to be the lineup I believe in the playoff schedule in the AFC. I think it's going to be New England will be the No. 1 seed. That's the way it looks like right now based on the schedule."
On if Mark Sanchez needed another year of college: "You know what? Part of me says yes, but the other part of me, he goes into New England last year and beats Brady on his own field in the playoffs, he beats Peyton Manning on his own field in the playoffs. The year before was Carson Palmer and it was Philip Rivers he went on the road to beat. There are moments when you look at Mark and you say to yourself, 'Wow, this kid has everything you need.' But then there are those moments in games where he makes boneheaded plays and throws interceptions and is inaccurate. For any quarterback in the league to be under 60 percent completion who has been in the league for three years and who has Plaxico Burress, Dustin Keller, Shonn Greene and Santonio Holmes on the field with him, to me, that sheds a lot of light on a guy that seems to be very anxious and is not playing with great poise. When you have that anxiety that gets the better of you, this is the performance that you see on the field."
On Rex Ryan's verbal debacles: "I said last week, enough with the apologies. They start to ring hollow after a while. ... This is not the only time in some way, shape or form that the Jets had to internally discipline him, and now the league is going to take issue with some of this stuff. You know, maybe this is why Rex wasn't hired in the first place. You know, Baltimore had him there. They saw him for many, many years. We all know Rex and we all loved Rex as a defensive coordinator and he was a personality. I don't want to discount what he has done for the Jets, but every time something like this happens, you now know why he wasn't hired before this."
We had an impromptu visit from Peter King from SI / MMQB to our Fenway Studios and decided to talk some NFL and Patriots with him.
Pete talks with The Senator, Phil Perry about the Patriots trading for Dwayne Allen, ruling out a return to New England for Martellus Bennett. They also talk about the potential future of Patriots backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo and some of the big names in NFL free agency
Pete, Thornton and Price give their final thoughts and predictions for the Super Bowl.
Dale, Holley and Rich Keefe discuss NBA lottery pick Lonzo Ball with his very outspoken father Lavar Ball. The guys touch on the Celtics, his feud with his sons' high school coach, Lonzo being better than Steph Curry and much more.
Kirk, Gerry, and Alex Reimer discuss whether or not Isaiah Thomas will win a title in Boston.
Gerry, Kirk, and Trenni react to the Celtics loss against the Suns.
Dale, Michael and Rich Keefe catch-up with former Sox GM Theo Epstein who is in town with the World Champion Cubs to take on the Sox this weekend.
We sit down with the manager of the Sox, John Farrell, for our weekly interview.
Rob Bradford is joined by Minnesota Twins relief pitcher Craig Breslow, who is one of the foremost authorities among professional athletes when it comes to understanding how charities work. Not only does Breslow head up his own charity, the Strike 3 Foundation, but also proactively has taken the Boston Globe to task via a letter to the editor after a 2013 article criticizing the allocation of funds for high-profile athlete's charities. Breslow digs into the recent controversy surrounding Tom Brady's affiliation with Best Buddies, explaining why the recent Globe article was misguided.
Gerry and Kirk read some inspiring quotes from Tony Robbins and Curtis is all set to see the man himself in June.
Tony Robbins fans were sent to the hospital after getting injured walking over coals and Pat is a massive fan of Tony Robbins.
Gerry, Kirk and Arcand react to Brady getting into a business relationship with Tony Robbins.
Night 1 of the draft has passed and Jimmy Garoppolo is still here. The general consensus on the Bears was that they screwed up their draft. And Larry Bird is out in Indiana. Is there hope for Ordway's Paul George dream?
The offensive issues for this Red Sox team are becoming more and more obvious. We also react to our interview with Pedro Martinez.
Chris Sale basically took on Tanaka and the Yankees by himself last night. And the Sox hot corner of days past seem to be gone as far as third base goes.
Final two hours of Dale and Holley with Keefe for a Friday.
Dale, Holley and Keefe discuss a variety of topics for the first two hours of Freestyle Friday.
We close out the week with another edition of the madness and LAROY!!!!!!!!!!! takes you into the weekend.
Kirk Minihane, Springsteen super fan, is joined by Garry W. Tallent, founding member of the E Street Band. Kirk and Garry talk about what it's like on tour with Bruce, how the band goes about selecting songs for the tour, Garry's projects away from the band, and Garry's upcoming solo tour that will bring him to the New England area.
Kirk Minihane, future radio hall of famer, sits down with current radio hall of famer Howie Carr. Kirk and Howie talk about Howie's latest book Kennedy Babylon. If you like famous people engaging in sex scandals, hard drug taking, and murder this is the podcast for you. Its a fascinating look at Boston's most famous family and the problems that took the family down.
Kirk Minihane, host and overlord of the morning show, brings Gerry Callahan and producers Chris and Ken into the studio to hear his show proposal. Kirk is thinking about making some changes to the morning show and wants to hear his crew's opinion.
Ken and Chris have the Good Weekend recap of a Friday Christian Arcand edition of K&C.
It’s Day 1 of the NFL Draft tonight so Jim Hackett & Pete Davidson offer a little pre-draft fodder for you featuring the Top Tight Ends and Top Wide Receivers. It’s Day 1 of the draft so there’s a lot of focus on the Top Tier talent who you could see drafted tonight including analysis on OJ Howard, Evan Engram & David Njoku; all Tight Ends that could be drafted in tonight’s 1st Round – a rarity. The analysis deepens with more focus on the Top 10 Tight Ends including Jake Butt, Bucky Hodges and Jordan Leggett. Then the boys turn to the Top Wide Receivers, including John Ross, Corey Davis, Mike Williams and JuJu Smith-Shuster. We’ll see where these guys land tonight, but you can learn more and have a few laughs right now.
Ken Laird and Chris Curtis are in after a Reimer Wednesday edition of K&C to recap a virtuoso Kirk Minihane off-the-rails performance
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Hour 3. Kirk goes on his second rant of the day. Minihane orders Alex’s and Gerry’s mics to be turned off and hosts the show by himself.More from this show
Hour 3. Kyle Kennedy's lawyer joins K&C to talk about yesterday's press conference . K&C insider Rabbit calls in to talk about the news surrounding Kyle Kennedy.More from this show
Christian Arcand made his triumphant return to K&C and the guys talked about the future of Jimmy Garoppolo.More from this show