After a perfect win over the Steelers last week 42-21, Kansas City will face the Buffalo Bills this weekend, a team that rolled over the New England Patriots, piling up 47 points and limiting the Bostonians to 17 points only.
Needless to say, they are a team to fear for the divisional round game. This will be a rematch of last year’s game, and let’s hope the Kansas City Chiefs will have the same success.
The Bills and Chiefs have met four times in the postseason, with each team winning twice. Some consider this to be the “real” AFC Championship game, and that may be accurate.
Last week, Josh Allen had more touchdown passes than incompletions. Like Allen, Patrick Mahomes threw five touchdowns with 404 yards, both quarterbacks looked unstoppable and pretty impressive. Who will get the edge tomorrow? The defense will have to keep an eye on Josh Allen and not let him get too confident too early in the game.
For the Buffalo Bills, not having star cornerback Tre’Davious White could be an issue in this game, as he could be useful to slow down Patrick Mahomes. Plus, covering Tyreek Hill could be a little bit more complicated for the Bills. Kansas City needs to take advantage of this big hole in their defense to add more speed and depth to their game. It’s also one thing to have to keep up with the quickness of Hill and Hardman for four quarters, but there’s more because Byron Pringle is a dangerous fourth option who has five receiving touchdowns this season, so expect the Bills passing defense to struggle more than they have in previous weeks.
In Week 5, Buffalo had a big win against a struggling Kansas City team and they forced four (three from Mahomes) including a pick-six by Micah Hyde that sealed the win. The Bills have the NFL’s No. 1 Total Defense, No. 1 scoring defense, and best third-down defense this past season. That is a big challenge ahead for Patrick Mahomes and Co. Mahomes, however, is a different player now. He had a very hectic beginning of the season but the offense got much better by mid-season. The Chiefs QB has played 16 career games versus teams that finished the season ranked top-five in the NFL defense and he is 15-1 in those contests. And he’s much more confident now than in week 5.
The running back locker room could have a significant role as well in this game. Jerick McKinnon was a revelation for the Chiefs last week, being very successful on the field and scoring a touchdown. He could be an extra dimension to the dangerous Chiefs offense, one more piece to the puzzle and the usual RB starter Clyde Edwards-Helaire should be back this week as well. The Chiefs have had 100-plus rush yards in seven consecutive postseason games which is the second-longest active streak in NFL. Mahomes and Allen tend to make big passes, but the rushing attack could be the surprise element to this divisional game.
This is a heavyweight title fight on divisional round weekend. Mahomes gets the edge at QB, even if Allen has played better of late. But the Bills appear to be a favorite for many observers. However, the game will be played at home at Arrowhead, and the current team is rolling. It will be very difficult to stop the Chiefs from going towards a third Superbowl, but let’s not underestimate the AFC East team.