It’s not easy to repeat as Super Bowl champs. The New England Patriots doing so various occasions makes it seem like it’s normal … but it’s not.
So what do the Kansas City Chiefs need to do to stay in contention for the Super Bowl LV and Super Bowl LVI?
They have a lot of pieces scheduled to remain in place this offseason, so they will enter the 2020 regular season as immediate contenders. So, much of a contender that the Chiefs lead the odds for the Super Bowl at SBR.Continue reading
It’s been a whirlwind start to the season for the Kansas City Chiefs. Headlined by 23-year-old quarterback Patrick Mahomes, the Chiefs smashed their way to a 2-0 start that included the scalps of the Los Angeles Chargers and Pittsburgh Steelers, both on the road.
Over the 38-28 win over the Chargers and 42-37 win over the Steelers, Mahomes passed for a whopping ten touchdowns, tying Len Dawson for the single-game franchise record. It’s all been clicking on offense for Mahomes and his incredibly talented supporting cast, but one element of the Kansas City game is notably lacking.
After a second successive Divisional title, there’s no doubt which team rules in the AFC West. With five wins out of six against their rivals in the West, the Chiefs once again dominated in this section. As one of only three teams in the NFL to have played over 100 games against their divisional rivals and to hold a winning record against all of them, Kansas have worked hard to secure their status as top dogs.
But when the new season gets underway in the fall, the challenge from their divisional rivals will be stronger than ever. So which teams are going to be the toughest opponents?
According to sports betting sites like Stakers.com, the Chargers are the number one contender in the West. They got a nightmare 0-4 start last time round and then went 9-3 for the rest of the season, narrowly missing out on the play-offs. Philip Rivers will have the same wide receiver corps to throw to and if they carry on where they left off last season, they’ll be a force to be reckoned with. But the Chiefs beat them twice last time, crushing them 54-23 over the two games, and they will relish the chance to put the Bolts in their place again this fall.
The Chargers are the opening chapter in a tough start to the Chiefs’ schedule. Next up is a trip to the Steelers, followed by a tricky home game against Jimmy Garoppolo and the improving 49ers and the first clash of the season against the Broncos. Match-ups against the Jaguars and the Patriots make up a rough opening half-dozen games.
But there’s a lot to be said for getting the toughest games out the way early on. With such a tricky schedule, there’s no danger of any early season sluggishness and we can expect the Chiefs to come out of the blocks roaring. Get through that opening stretch with a positive win-loss record and Kansas could be set for another play-off charge.
The Chargers might be grabbing the attention of the pundits, but the Broncos can also be expected to put up more of a fight this time round. They’ve made some shrewd moves in the Draft and the combination of Bradley Chubb and Von Miller should be formidable. The addition of Courtland Sutton and DaeSean Hamilton will also make Denver more dangerous on offence. But the Chiefs have a few weapons of their own.
Sure, Alex Smith has gone, but anyone writing off Kansas on the back of his departure would be making a big mistake. Patrick Mahomes has all the skills to step up and lead this team and the lightning receivers Tyreek Hill, Chris Conley and Sammy Watkins will give him the tools he needs to pile up the points. With Kareem Hunt and the returning Spencer Ware forming a powerful back duo, the Kansas offence will be looking good in September.
We can also expect more from the defense this time round. Last season they had a terrible run of injuries, but with Eric Berry back and a host of new defensive draft recruits, the Chiefs will be a lot tighter against the rush in 2018-19.
We can’t talk about tough opponents without mentioning the Raiders. Whatever they call themselves, the Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders always come strong and the 30-31 game in Oakland last season was an epic. That was the only Divisional defeat the Chiefs suffered all campaign, and they will be keen to reassert their dominance over one of our oldest rivals.
After that tough opening stretch, things get a little easier. The Cardinals will be strong opponents, but nothing the Chiefs can’t handle, and after their bye in week twelve, they have three games out of five against AFC West opponents so if they dominate the division like they did last season, we can expect Kansas to finish the regular season strongly.
As ever, their AFC West rivals will make things tough for the Chiefs, but as they showed last season, they can cope with pretty much anything that the opposition throws at them. And if anyone doubts the Chiefs’ play-off credentials, they should remember the opening two games of last season when Kansas beat eventual Super Bowl contenders the Patriots and the Eagles. Losing to the Titans in the Wild Card game was a huge disappointment last time round, but the Chiefs can put that right in 2018-19 and take another Divisional title on the way to going deep into the play-offs.
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The Kansas City Chiefs signalled their intent for change in the 2017 Draft by moving up to the 10th selection to acquire quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Since Andy Reid’s arrival at the club in 2013, Alex Smith had been a safe pair of hands at the position, proving his worth after the Chiefs used a second-round pick to secure his services from the San Francisco 49ers.
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Kansas City reached the playoffs in four of the five seasons with Smith as their signal-caller, winning the AFC West in back-to-back terms in 2016 and 2017. However, success in the playoffs eluded Reid’s men, winning one game against the Houston Texans in the wildcard round in the 2015 term.
Patience ran thin after their narrow defeat to the Pittsburgh Steelers in the divisional round in 2016, resulting in the move for Mahomes. Smith remained the starter and enjoyed one of the finest seasons of his NFL career in 2017. His tenure with the Chiefs ended on a sour note with a second-straight post-season defeat on home soil, losing by a single point to the Tennessee Titans.
Smith was traded to the Washington Redskins in the early stages of the off-season, with the franchise putting their faith in Mahomes to guide them over the hump to reach the Super Bowl for the first time since 1969. Kansas City are backed at 28/1 to win Super Bowl LII in the latest odds provided by Betway, which will be a challenge, given the changes they’ve made in key positions since the end of the 2017 campaign.
Smith was viewed as a game manager by many pundits in the NFL and given his standard of performances during his first four seasons with the Chiefs – it was not an unfair statement. However, the 33-year-old enjoyed a brilliant start to the 2017 campaign, perhaps fuelled by the drafting of Mahomes. His four-touchdown performance against the New England Patriots stunned the defending Super Bowl champions, recording a 42-27 win at Gillette Stadium. He maintained that form in the early stages of the term to be considered a candidate for MVP.
The inconsistencies in his game appeared during the middle stretch of the season, including a two-interception display against the New York Giants. Performances of that ilk would cost the Chiefs a bye in the post-season and may have convinced the club’s hierarchy to move on. Smith’s outing against the Titans in the playoffs was statistically sound, but he lacked the clutch performance needed to guide them to victory.
Reid will be hopeful that Mahomes has those characteristics in abundance. There are fine margins for the quarterback to deal with as the club have been a fixture in the AFC playoff race for the past five seasons. A step back will be deemed as a failure, even if it is his first full term in the NFL. The 22-year-old was outstanding during his time at Texas Tech in the college game and has quality weapons around him with Kareem Hunt, Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. The pressure is on Mahomes to deliver.
The Chiefs have also made significant moves on the defensive side of the ball. All-Pro cornerback Marcus Peters was traded away to the Los Angeles Rams, while veteran linebacker Derrick Johnson was released. Both players were a key part of Bob Sutton’s unit last term, although Peters’ behaviour, particularly in a defeat to the New York Jets, may have hastened his departure. Their exits leave a void on the defense, while Eric Berry may not be the same player at the start of the 2018 term as he works his way back from a torn Achilles.
Kendall Fuller and Anthony Hitchens arrived to replace Peters and Johnson, but face a major baptism of fire in their bid to replace two quality players for the franchise. Justin Houston needs to take ownership of the defense and rediscover his best form rushing passer. He notched 9.5 sacks last term in 15 matches and can raise the bar to once again become one of the truly dominant pass-rushers in the NFL. A healthy Dee Ford could be crucial to easing the pressure, although there’s also a need for Tanoh Kpassagnon, Reggie Ragland and Chris Jones to come to the fore.
It’s getting to be that time of year again! Yes, I used an exclamation point instead of a regular full-stop because I am excited and you should be too!
Spring is maturing into Summer. This puts preseason football just a couple of short months away. And before you know it, it will be September and the regular season will be kicking off at Arrowhead.
Draft Day Fallout
We all know this, but I’ll say it anyway. The Chiefs are loaded with talent on the offensive side of the ball. So much so, that even with an aging defense that seemed to get run over by the run … we still went on a five-game winning streak and finished the season on top of the AFC West at 10-6.
Stacked with a recently signed Sammy Watson, the explosive Kareem Hunt, Mr. Dependable, Travis Kelce, and Tyreek, we knew that the 2018 draft was going to be oriented around shoring up the Defense.
But there has been some criticism in the world of sports media pundits. And I have to say that I think they did a commendable job. How awesome can you expect the draft to be when you don’t have a 1st-round pick?
Hello, people remember how we moved up in the 2017 Draft, trading the No.27 pick, 3rd-round pick, and the 2018 1st-round pick to get Patrick Mahomes?
I’m still shaking my head at the naysaying … Brett Veach may have taken care of a large chunk of the run-stop and pass-rushing problems that have beleaguered the Chiefs. Breeland Speaks is 283 pounds of EDGE defense that will be able to putt that added pressure on QBs. He is probably only a one-gap guy when it comes to stopping the run —for the time being. But with his talent and athletic ability, he’ll learn quickly.
They doubled up on the defensive line, taking Derrick Nnadi in the 3rd round. Will he have an immediate impact? That remains to be seen, but young talent depth on the line was sorely needed. The 3rd round also saw the Kansas City shoring up the LB position with Dorian O’Daniel. Though it’s likely he’ll be a rover and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him thrust into the role of Safety
In rounds four and six, Veach picked up safety, Armani Watts, Tremon Smith at Corner and Reginald McKenzie Jr, another D-lineman to really round out their attempt at adding defensive toughness to the team. After the draft, the Chiefs really pounded the undrafted free agents market, getting a whole slew of players to add to the competition and motivation at camp.
Probabilities and Odds
The AFC West is going to be a difficult calculus problem over the next couple of seasons. One of the things that I do each year is review Bovada to see what their oddsmakers think.
I must say that this season’s odds to win the AFC West are a surprise to me. The Chargers leading the charge in the AFC is a joke in my book. I know they came in second in the division last year, but Rivers is aging and they have a pair of Geno Smith —who hasn’t been successful anywhere— and an untested Cardale Jones as backups.
The Raiders could completely implode with Gruden coming back. He was a great coach back in the day, but the world has moved on and his rigidity could very well work against him … not to mention all of the rust.
The Broncos will play competitively in the AFC West but I have a feeling they are going to get murdered everywhere else. So, I actually like the fact that the Chiefs are being given the lowest implied probability (22.2%) to win the AFC West. In fact, I think they will enter the playoffs standing on top of the AFC West once again.
1. Los Angeles Chargers +200 (33.3%)
2. Oakland Raiders +250 (28.6%)
3. Denver Broncos +275 (26.7%)
4. Kansas City Chiefs +350 (22.2%)
So, then I study the odds on how many games each team is predicted to win. And the Chiefs are the only team that is heavily favored to surpass their number … this creates a bit of contradiction to those Vegas betting odds boards. Sure, the Raiders are lined out to win one more game than Kansas City, but they are underdogs on that line.
The Broncos are barely favored to win 8 games and the Chargers are at even money to win 10.
• Chiefs OVER/UNDER 7.5 Wins over is -150
• Raiders OVER/UNDER 8.5 Wins over is +110
• Broncos OVER/UNDER 7.5 Wins over is -105
• Chargers OVER/UNDER 9.5 Wins over is +100
All in all, I think the pundits and sportsbooks are banking too heavily on Mahomes having a rocky season as the team leader.
Mahomes is ready to lead the Chiefs. Sure there will be some mistakes, but there was good reason for the organization to move up last year to take him. On his first NFL play, he proved that he has the toughness and mental fortitude to hang in there and deliver a catchable ball to Robinson with an unblocked edge pass rusher bearing down only feet away.
He kept his eyes on his target and took the hit like a man. His first completion came on a 3rd and 10, where he spied the safeties pulling back and wide, and was able to recognize this for a strike downfield against a mismatched safety.
This kid is ready. The Chiefs will win more that 8 games and contend for the AFC West once again.
The Kansas City Chiefs are one of a number of teams in the AFC Championship that are undergoing major changes this summer. Those teams, including the Chiefs, will begin 2018 with a question mark over them and with something to prove. For Kansas their question mark will be their new quarterback Patrick Mahomes, and is he the man to make them a force in the AFC once again?
The Chiefs made everyone aware of how much they liked Mahomes during the 2017 draft. They moved up from number 27 in the line up to number 10 to make sure they landed their number one target, and gave up a lot to get there. Mahomes was taken, and the rest is history, he played his first full season under the tutelage of the now departed Alex Smith, and will be looking to use that experience from last season as something to build on this summer.
Mahomes will be the number one guy for Kansas; he has no safety blanket around him, and the world now rests on his shoulders. He has to show two things – the first is that he is mentally tough enough to be a number one in the NFL at such a young age, and the second is to show that he is good enough to do it. Those are two big tests, and not only will those two things be scrutinized by the fans and the media, but they will also determine how well the Chiefs do this season. With Alex Smith traded to Washington, the fans have no choice but to get on board and support Mahomes.
“Arrowhead Stadium” by Greenstrat
Should they have poor quarterback play, the Chiefs look likely to have another relatively level season, where they will once again be around the edges of the playoffs, but lacking the quality to do any damage. However, if Mahomes can step up and deliver what his team needs then they have a chance to challenge in the AFC. Mahomes doesn’t need to come in and be a superstar quarterback in his first season, but he does need to do the basics right and keep mistakes to a minimum.
The latest NFL betting has Kansas at 12/1 for AFC glory, something that would drop considerably should Mahomes have a good start to the season and prove his worth. The Chiefs have a lot of firepower in their line up, and their price of 12/1 is solely based on Mahomes not being quite ready for the big time. Should he prove people wrong, then the Chiefs will become serious contenders in the AFC, make no mistake about it.
Like many other franchises, this is a very big summer for the Kansas City Chiefs and one that will involve big changes on the field. They have Patrick Mahomes in place as their quarterback, a man they have singled out and chosen to be their leader for years to come. Some people think this is a year too soon for him, but he has been given an opportunity to shine, and if he takes it the Chiefs could be AFC dark horses in 2018.
Felipe Lopez was diagnoised with Terminal Cancer in his liver in the summer of 2017. This unexpected news only worsened when he was given a life expectancy of 6-12 months.
Felipe, with his wife, Lorraine, tried to make the most of their short time together. On his good days, they enjoyed sitting on the porch, embracing fresh air, and going out on walks, and spending time with their family.
It was a dream come true when the Dream Foundation offered to send Felipe to Kansas City to watch a Chief’s game and meet the players.
His wife would be unable to care for herself and him on the 6 hour flight and 3 Day Trip in Kansas. The decision was made that Steven SR would accompany Felipe to Kansas to share this Once In A Life Time experience.
They left friday 12-15-17, and the next day Felipe’s dream would come true.
Felipe had the time of his life at the game and after an exhausting day, they returned to the hotel.
On The Morning of 12-17-17, It was discovered by Steven SR that Felipe had passed in his sleep.
We are comforted that Felipe spent his last day experiencing all that life had to offer. His dying wish had come true and even though he was far from home, he knew he was loved.
This unexpected passing during his trip has left his family aching for closure.
Any amount helps, we are seeking any and all help in honoring Felipe’s final wishes.
Felipe Lopez was a loved husband, father, and grandpa. He is survived by his wife, Lorraine Lopez, Son’s Fernando & Steven SR Vargas, His Daughter-In-Law, Melissa, Grandchildren Renee, Steven Jr, Pearl, Micah, & Jonah, and His Great Grandchildren Castiel & Matthew Jr.
Help his family here.
The Kansas City Chiefs finished the 2014 season with a 9-7 record and missed the playoffs, thanks in large part to a 2-4 stumble down the home stretch of the schedule. The NFL betting lines for their total season wins this upcoming season is over/under 8.5-110 at the majority of offshore sportsbooks.
Despite that disappointing result, Kansas City could be in better position to make the postseason cut this upcoming NFL season. Heck, KC did score wins over both Super Bowl teams – New England and Seattle – last season.
Here are five keys to the Chiefs making the playoffs:
1. Passing game
The Chiefs had one of the most mind-blowing – and embarrassing – stats in 2014, failing to connect with a wide receiver for a single passing touchdown. Kansas City scored just 18 times through the air, with those going to tight ends and running backs.
To remedy that, former Eagles WR Jeremy Maclin was added and WR Chris Conley was drafted out of Georgia. Alex Smith must also be protected after getting sacked 49 times – seventh most. Shoring up the offensive line, more importantly right guard, is a must this offseason.
2. Win on the road
Kansas City has an opportunity to take over the AFC West with Denver and San Diego expected to take steps back. The Chiefs are around 7/2 to win the division, behind the Broncos at 4/9, but must win those divisional games and win on the road.
Arrowhead is still one of the loudest venues in the NFL, helping KC to a 6-2 SU (6-2 ATS) home mark in 2014, but the Chiefs were 3-5 SU (4-4 ATS) when hitting the highway. They have a season win total of 8.5 for 2015, so improvement is expected.
3. Keep Charles healthy
Jamaal Charles is one of the most dynamic players in the NFL, with his ability to blast through the defensive line or reel in a screen pass for yards after the catch. Charles played 15 games last year but wore down toward the end of the schedule. He’s 28 years old now – a year removed from the 27-year-old drop off most RBs suffer – so keeping Charles healthy could be tougher than ever.
4. Defensive stars
The two best defensive players on Kansas City’s depth chart aren’t in pads this summer. NFL sack leader LB Justin Houston has yet to sign off on his franchise tag, skipping OTAs and mini camp while holding out for a long-term deal. Houston, who recorded 22 sacks in 2014, could possibly pass on training camp where players train all the off season while also using these supplements, preseason and the start of the regular season altogether if he sticks to his guns.
The other standout not in uniform this offseason – or perhaps all season – is star safety Eric Berry, who recently completed cancer treatment. The team hasn’t provided any updates on his 2015 status but it’s no surprise the Chiefs went 2-3 in the final five games without their defensive captain in the secondary. Kansas City will likely need both of its defensive standouts to make the postseason.
5. Special teams
The one thing that saved the Chiefs offense from being a complete wet noodle in 2014 was special teams, namely the return duo of Knile Davis and De’Anthony Thomas giving the scoring attack solid starting field position.
Davis averaged 28.6 yards per kick return (third in the NFL), including a 99-yard return TD in Week 8. Thomas was a flash on punt returns, averaging 11.9 yards per punt return (also third in the NFL), highlighted by an 81-yard punt return TD in Week 13. The offense will still need those extra yards from the return team this season.
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