It's the 12-5 Kansas City Chiefs visiting the 12-4 New England Patriots in the AFC Divisional round playoff game at Gillette Stadium. The NFL betting line has the Chiefs as underdogs in the game but KC isn't worried about that considering they haven't lost since October. The Chiefs have 11 straight wins and are hoping to make it 12 in order to make their first AFC Championship game since the 1993 season when they lost to the Buffalo Bills.
The Chiefs big question is the injury status of Jeremy Maclin. The Chiefs WR had a mild high ankle sprain in last week's Wild Card game against the Houston Texans and has done very little practice this week. It's not clear yet if he will play but the Chiefs are obviously hoping he can. He will be a game-time decision.
New England is going through some distractions this week. DE Chandler Jones had a bizarre incident last weekend in which he showed up to a police station early Sunday morning as a "confused party". Not many details are out on that. Then the Patriots star TE Rob Gronkowski may or may not have had an injection for his knee at the hospital this week, and now he also has a back injury added to the injury report. We're not sure of his status. In good news for New England, they're getting Julian Edelman back.
The Chiefs CAN win this game. I am picking them to win partially because I'm a homer but also because the Chiefs have the ingredients to win this game.. A few ESPN folks are picking KC. Their defense is elite and can cause problems for the Patriots and Tom Brady. Offensively, the Chiefs need to hope they can get something out of their receivers if Maclin can't play. The Patriots are banged up too so it's no sure thing that this is New England's game just because they're at home.
Nuts and bolts
Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, Massachusette
Game time: Saturday, January 16, 3:35 p.m. (Arrowhead Time)
TV channel: CBS (Do I get the game?)
Matchup history: 17-13-3 (Chiefs lead)
Announcers: Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts, Evan Washburn (sideline)
Enemy blog: Pats Pulpit
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Saturday, Jan. 16
(All times ET)
Sunday, Jan. 17
Sunday, Jan. 24
AFC Championship: AFC Divisional Round winners, 3 p.m., CBS
NFC Championship: NFC Divisional Round winners, 6:40 p.m., FOX
Sunday, Feb. 7
Super Bowl 50: AFC champion vs. NFC champion, 6:30 p.m., CBS