This Week: The New England Patriots (3-0) will try to close out the month of September as only the fifth team in franchise history to begin a campaign with a four-game winning streak when they trek cross-country to face the San Diego Chargers (3-0). The New England passing attack, which is averaging an NFL-best 316 yards per game, will be challenged by the Chargers top rated pass defense. San Diego's defense leads the NFL, allowing only 132 passing yards per game and posting 16 sacks. The Patriots currently hold a 10-game winning streak in the series, their longest against any opponent. The last time the Chargers defeated the Patriots was on Nov. 15, 1970.
Television: This week's game will be broadcasted nationally on CBS (locally on WBZ Channel 4). The play-by-play duties will be handled by Greg Gumbel, who will be joined in the booth by Phil Simms. Armen Keteyian will provide sideline reports throughout the game.
Radio: Every Patriots game can be heard in stereo on the Patriots official flagship station WBCN 104.1 FM. Gil Santos, now in his 26th season as the voice of the Patriots, will call the game along with Patriots Hall of Famer Gino Cappelletti, who will provide indepth analysis for his 22nd season. A complete list of the Patriots WBCN Rock Radio Network can be found on pages 462-463 of the 2002 Patriots media guide or at www.patriots.com.
Troy Brown: The Patriots wide receiver currently leads the NFL with 31 receptions following his 16-catch day against the Chiefs. His prolific day tied the fourth-highest total in NFL history and established a Patriots franchise record. He also set a personal high with 176 yards receiving and currently ranks third in the AFC with 292 yards receiving. Winning Ways: The Patriots 41-38 overtime victory over the Chiefs was their ninth consecutive regular season victory, setting a franchise record. They eclipsed the previous mark of eight set from Nov. 3, 1994 – Sept. 3, 1995. Including postseason contests, the Patriots have now won 12 consecutive games. The steak started with a 34-17 victory over the New Orleans Saints on Nov. 25, 2001. Their last loss came against the St. Louis Rams on Nov. 18, 2001.
Turnovers: The Patriots lead the AFC and are second in the NFL with 10 takeaways this season. They have converted seven of those into scores (six touchdowns and one field goal). New England owns a 6 turnover ratio through three games this season and during their current nine-game regular season winning streak the Patriots have a takeaway ratio of 17.
Scoring is Soaring: The New England Patriots are 3-0 for just the fifth time in franchise history and have scored 115 points (38.3 ppg.) in those three games. The 115 points scored ranks second among the most prolific offensive performances by a defending Super Bowl Champion in NFL history. The 2000 St. Louis Rams were the most prolific offense of all the NFL defending champions, scoring 119 points in their first three games that year. But, the Rams allowed 94 points in those three games, while the Patriots have surrendered just 59 points.