Curran's Keys: Stay cool on the road

Curran's Keys: Stay cool on the road
September 29, 2013, 4:45 pm
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Here are Tom E. Curran's Keys to the Game for the New England Patriots.

1. Be prepared for diversity of offensive weapons
"The interesting thing about Atlanta is that it isn't just the quarterback Matt Ryan who can beat you with his accuracy and his acumen. It's all those weapons alongside him," Curran said.

Curran goes on to single out Julio Jones, one of the game's best wide receivers and an obvious target of Matt Ryan. But the Falcons also have Roddy White (while banged up) and Tony Gonzalez

2. Patriots have to acclimate to a loud stadium in Atlanta

Everybody knows that it gets extra loud in the Georgia Dome. Gillette Stadium is nowhere near as loud. It'll be an adjustment for the Pats.

"Let's hope the Patriots bring their "A" game in terms of communication," Curran said, "because if they go down to Atlanta and they don't have all their hand signals good, they're going to have situation where there are going to be pre-snap penalties, there are going to be missed opportunities because guys aren't running the right routes, and sight adjustments."

3. Composure
With New England on the road in a hostile environment against a team that desperately doesn't want to fall to 1-3, you can bet the fans will be extra loud.
"When you're in a hostile stadium and the fan base gets loud, how will you shut them up?" Curran asked. "Will you give more fuel to the fire that is going to get louder and higher if you make mistakes? The Patriots are going to have to move on from negative plays."

Curran picks the Falcons to win this game, 27-21.