Patriots Pulse Blog: New England Patriots (1-1) at Detroit Lions (0-2)

The Patriots travel to Detroit this week to face former defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and the Lions. The Patriots need to play well and bounce back after a tough 31-20 loss to the Jaguars last week.

Here are five keys for the Patriots.

1. Get Pressure on Stafford: The Patriots will have a hard time rushing Matthew Stafford without Trey Flowers but they will have to find a way to pressure Stafford and get him out of the pocket. They cannot allow him to hang in the pocket and deliver.

2. Go No Huddle: Open the game in no huddle. The Patriots need to get into a groove offensively and the best way to do it is to go no huddle. It helps Tom Brady get into a rhythm and that will be key tonight.

3. Get Off the Field On Third Down: This has been a problem for three years now and it will probably be a key in every game this season moving forward.

4. Get Off to a Good Start: The Patriots got off to an abysmal start last week. They must get off to a better start tonight. They cannot fall behind and play from behind.

5. Limit the Big Plays in the Passing Game: With Eric Rowe and Patrick Chung out tonight, the Lions will come out tonight and throw the ball. The Patriots cannot give up big plays and allow the Lions to turn this into a shootout.

Final Prediction: The Patriots face an early season must win game against a Lions team that is in a similar spot. Getting off to a good start and playing smarter will be key tonight. I think the Patriots will play better tonight and get a win in what could be a great game. Patriots 31 Lions 24