Predict the rest of the regular season schedule
The Kansas City Chiefs’ season hasn’t gone the way everyone expected. A really bad defense has not been protected by a very good attack typically. An abundance of turnovers and field goals, instead of touchdowns, resulted in four terrible losses and four equally uncomfortable wins.
Now that the NFL season has 17 games, there is no longer an official “mid-season”, but with Week 8 being the closest to a midpoint we have, let’s assess the last nine games on the schedule. Chiefs and let’s make a prediction to see how they will end the season. But first…
Ouch. While that doesn’t bode well for the struggling team, let’s see what it looks like for each opponent.
Green Bay Packers (7-1): Once billed as the most electric game of the season as Patrick Mahomes and Aaron Rodgers finally meet, this game now looks scary for the Chiefs (although Rodgers has since been ruled out). After losing in Week 1, the Packers went on to claim 7 straight wins, including toppling the previously undefeated Cardinals. Unless the Chiefs can quickly figure out both sides of the ball, it could get ugly quickly.
Las Vegas Raiders (5-2): Following the resignation of their head coach Jon Gruden earlier this season, many believed the Raiders would be in free fall. Instead, they come out of their bye always in first place in AFC West and always surprisingly tough. It will be curious to see how the loss of Henry Ruggs and the tragic circumstances associated with it affect the Raiders. LV is beatable, but the Chiefs always seem to have a hard time with them under normal circumstances.
Dallas Cowboys (6-1): Another one-loss team, the Cowboys have proven to be a much better team this year than in previous years. And even with a backup quarterback, they still impressed. Unlike the 3 other NFC Least teams that the Chiefs have beaten, the Cowboys will not be left out.
Denver Broncos (4-4): Currently tied with the Chiefs for last place in the division, but both are only one game behind, the Broncos have won 3 in a row against some really bad teams, and have been 1-4 since . After the previous 3 weeks, it should be a much easier win for the Chiefs.
Las Vegas Raiders (5-2): The Raiders return to Arrowhead, hopefully with a loss under their build earlier in the season. Depending on how things go, it could either be a tough clash that decides the division or an easy win for the Chiefs, reminiscent of previous years.
Los Angeles Chargers (4-3): At this point in the calendar their current record means very little, but Justin Herbert and the Chargers still fought and won the first battle this season, so they will no doubt be doing it again. It could still be a fight for the division.
Pittsburgh Steelers (4-3): Another midfield team that has a tree planted at quarterback but very strong defense. The Steelers should be an easy win, but then again, the Giants were also meant to be an easy win. At the end of the season, the Steelers and Chiefs could play for a wildcard spot and their playoff hopes.
Cincinnati Bengals (5-3): The Chiefs face the last of the AFC North, which like AFC West, suddenly turned into a very close race with four very good teams. What was once considered another cake win, could suddenly be a clash with the potential AFC No.1 seed.
Denver Broncos (4-4): The Chiefs end their season on the road to face the Broncos, in what could be a meaningless game (either because the Chiefs miss the playoffs or they sort of get a good seed), or this game d ‘huge implications. It doesn’t feel like there will be much in between.
The only thing that has been perhaps more incredible than the Chiefs’ (bad) season so far is the fact that the AFC is so wide open. Each team has at least 2 losses, and the eight AFC West and North teams are all within one game of each other in their division and current playoff standings. Apart from that, four other teams from East and South are still in contention.
With only 7 spots left to make the playoffs dance, I predict the Chiefs will go 6-3 down the stretch and finish the season 10-7. I’m not sure it’ll be enough to win the division but should be good enough to land at least the third wild card.