'Thursday Night Football' preview: What to watch for in Patriots-Falcons

8:20 ET (NFL Network, FOX, Amazon) | Mercedes-Benz Stadium

The Patriots head to Atlanta with the NFL’s second-longest win streak, having won four in a row, and their last two losses — to the Buccaneers by two points and to the Cowboys in overtime — are as respectable as losses come. This is a hot team with a stingy defense and a rookie quarterback in Mac Jones coming off his most efficient game of the season. Much the opposite can be said of Atlanta, which just combined a thoroughly embarrassing defensive performance with a season-worst outing for veteran QB Matt Ryan. In short, it’s a matchup of teams headed in opposite directions. It’s also, of course, a rematch of Super Bowl LI, featuring the Falcons’ epic collapse. Let’s hope Atlanta doesn’t build a 28-3 lead at any point — if it does, the Twitter comedians will be insufferable.

Here are four things to watch Thursday night when the Falcons play host to the Patriots:

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