RB Priest Holmes will miss a second straight game against New England with a strained medial collateral ligament. It wouldn't be surprising to see Holmes, still the NFL's scoring leader with 90 points, miss another one or two games after this.
TE Tony Gonzalez was held to just one catch for 17 yards in his last game against New England, a Patriots win in over at Foxboro. But Gonzalez was 11-147 in a 2000 Monday night game, also in Foxboro.
RB Derrick Blaylock was feeling the pain of 33 rushes after running for 186 yards in Holmes' absence last week. Blaylock, who had his big day against one of the league's worst rushing defenses in New Orleans last week, will be healthy for his second straight start against New England's much more solid rush defense.
DE Eric Hicks had two sacks in the last Chiefs-Patriots game.
CB Dexter McCleon, who was believed to be ready to return to the lineup when he missed a third straight game against New Orleans last week, is expected to be back in the lineup against New England. McCleon may have lost his starting job after being burned badly in his last appearance against Jacksonville, but his return has to upgrade the nickel position currently being played by second-year vulnerability Julian Battle.
WR Eddie Kennison was 8-100 with a TD in his last game against the Patriots, a 2000 game while with Chicago.
PATRIOTS GAME PLAN:
The Chiefs may be hard pressed to run Derrick Blaylock as effectively against the seven or possibly eight quality defenders New England will stack in the box, but they have to try it anyway else their offense work without a key dimension. Trent Green will have to test young corners Asante Samuel and Randall Gay.
Defensively, the Chiefs have to remember what happened in their '02 loss in Foxboro when Tom Brady's short, timely passes became big gainers. They have to keep David Givens, Deion Branch and Troy Brown in front of them and keep Corey Dillon from breaking too many big runs. You have to doubt that they have the personnel up to this task.
KEY MATCHUPS TO WATCH:
Chiefs TE Tony Gonzalez vs. Patriots SS Rodney Harrison. These two have a long and distinguished history from Harrison's years with San Diego that should be a centerpiece of the ABC coverage.
Chiefs blocking unit, which includes second TE Jason Dunn, against Patriots front seven/eight. Stopping the KC run, even without Holmes, will be a challenge for the Patriots against one of the league's best offensive lines.
Corey Dillon and Patriots running game vs. Chiefs front seven. KC can't afford to play eight in the box because of their respect for New England receivers. Dillon could have a big day here as KC's linebacking corps isn't very good.
RB Priest Holmes will miss a second straight game with a strained MCL.
TE Kris Wilson is listed as doubtful, the first time since breaking his leg in the preseason that he's been anything but out. He could see action in a week or two.
LB Monty Beisel (questionable, calf) re-injured the calf that cost him two games earlier. This injury is not as severe, and given the extra day of rest, he could be ready for New England.
CB Dexter McCleon (questionable, ham) practiced last week but was held out of a third straight game against New Orleans. Look for him to play Monday night as the Chiefs need a veteran nickel back.
DT Junior Siavii (questionable, ankle) might not be on the game-day active roster even if he is healthy.