An underdog for the first time in 68 games - or 1,218 days - quarterback Tom Brady brushed the news off, claiming "everybody thinks we suck and can't win any games" in a postgame interview, according to ESPN's Mike Reiss.
Brady's teammates followed suit and vowed the Chiefs being favored would only make the Patriots hungrier.
"Tom (Brady) said it, so I can comment on it. Yeah, everybody does think we suck," wide receiver Phillip Dorsett said. "Everybody thinks we don't have enough. But the only thing that matters is what we think in this room and we believe. When you have a whole group of guys that believes, it can be a special thing. So we have to keep playing, keep going hard."
"We see it," veteran safety Devin McCourty added. "We see our quarterback's too old, we're not good enough on defense, the skill players aren't good, but it doesn't affect how we prepare."
New England defeated Kansas City 43-40 in Week 6 at home and is using its play on the field as its only barometer for success.
"We know we have a lot of doubters, a lot of people saying this and that, counting us out and things like that," defensive end Trey Flowers said. "It's football. If it was going by what people said, there would be no reason to play the game. We let the pads talk. We let the scoreboard talk. That's our motto."