"Daddy!" Will says, and the tension inside Jenni releases. Now it’s a game. She moves her finger to another picture, this one of "Uncle B.," then to one of "Nana," then back to the photo of Will’s dad. She asks him again. He recognizes him again. Every night they do this, an important part of the bedtime routine: Will being taught to love a father he barely knew. Seven weeks after Will was born in October 2013, Kyle Van Winkle went with his own father to a Kansas City Chiefs game; following a mysterious confrontation with other fans, he was beaten to death in a parking lot outside Arrowhead Stadium.
Titans defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau is a defensive legend. The architect of the famed "Blitzburgh" scheme will still bring it via the blitz, which emphasizes the need to run the ball effectively and avoid obvious passing situations. The Titans, however, boast a strong run defense, and if you do get in third-and-long, LeBeau can and will bring safeties and corners from all over the place. The offensive line, which has played together for six games now, will need to keep its head on a swivel to keep quarterback Alex Smith clean.
Throw in a pair of Hill punt return touchdowns that have been called back, and it's easy to see why Toub nodded when asked if this year's Chiefs mirror his dynamic Hester-led units, which topped Rick Gosselin of The Dallas Morning News' widely-embraced special teams rankings in 2006 and 2007.
"There are shades of '06 and ‘07 because of the dynamic guy we've got back there," Toub said. "It's almost déjà vu in a lot of ways, the way teams try to attack us, like kicking the ball out of bounds. I went through the same thing in Chicago, and a lot of the same things that I've experienced there are happening here."
The Titans have a really tough test tomorrow when they head into Arrowhead to take on the Chiefs. Both of these teams still have their eyes on winning a division championship. Joel Thorman, my boss here at SB Nation and the head of Arrowhead Pride, was nice enough to answer 5 questions about his Chiefs for us.
I think this is a classic, run the ball and play defense type game. It’s going to be bone-chilling cold, so don’t expect the scoreboard to light up here. I think the Titans run the ball well enough to contend, but will need to stand tall defensively to slow Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. Take the Titans and the points in a close one.
Prediction: Chiefs 17, Titans 16
August, Brandon and Danomite are all on board this week to preview the Titans' biggest match-up in years. This Sunday's game isn't an absolute must win, but the road to the AFC South crown looks a whole lot easier if the Titans take care of business against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.
Eric Berry’s claim to the DPOY lies in his big time interceptions. Berry has a pair of pick sixes that have been the difference in winning and losing. On top of that, the star safety has the extremely rare "safety" on a two-point conversion. These big time highlight plays are exactly the kinds of things that will catch the eyes of voters. The fact that they turned potential losses into victories will carry heavily.
When Lee Norman heads to the Kansas City Chiefs game against the Tennessee Titans this weekend, he plans to bundle up well. Like much of the country, Kansas City is experiencing below freezing temperatures, and Sunday, the lows are expected to dip down to 8 degrees. "I’ll wear layers. A lot of fleece," said Norman, a physician and senior vice president and chief medical officer at the University of Kansas Hospital, who knows cold weather well. He went to college and medical school in Minnesota and has practiced medicine in the Arctic, where temperatures can drop as low as 50 degrees below zero.
D.J. Alexander and Terrance Smith are expected to replace Johnson on Sunday, though Frank Zombo could also factor into the mix. Ramik Wilson will take over the headset duties for Johnson.
Oakland Raiders punter Marquette King will not be fined for his on-field antics against the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 14. His teammate, defensive end Jihad Ward, will not be so lucky. Ward tackled Chiefs running back Spencer Ware by the facemask during the Raiders’ 21-13 loss which earned him a 15-yard penalty to go along with his fresh $9,115 fine.
Poe Man's Dream Foundation is proud to announce that the winner of the first annual Poe Man's Challenge was Kendael Amstead and Derrion Williams who pitched Jen Taylor's The Selling Company. The winners will each receive a 500 scholarships from the Poe Man's Dream Foundation and tickets, courtesy of Polsinelli Law Firm, to this week's Chiefs vs. Titans game.
64.7 -- Chiefs QB Alex Smith's completion percentage on downfield throws (15 yards or more) in the past four games. He was 11-for-17 during that span. According to ESPN Stats & Information, Smith was 7-for-35 (20 percent) on those throws in the previous seven games. The Chiefs are 5.5-point favorites at home against the Tennessee Titans and can clinch a playoff berth with a win.
For the Chiefs to continue their strong defense and winning ways they’ll need Ramik to be the best he can be. He’ll need to start trusting his instincts and attack. DJ needs to take him to school on how to study offenses during the week so he can recognize plays on Sunday. If he can become even half as good at diagnosing plays before they happen as DJ than the defense shouldn’t miss a beat.
Travis Kelce is officially the hottest tight end in the NFL. After going over 100 receiving yards just once in his first seven games, Kelce has accomplished the feat in four straight games. He caught five out of eight targets for 101 yards against the Raiders last week. Fantasy owners will certainly be depending on Kelce to keep the streak alive against Tennessee, a team that only ranks in the middle of the pack as far as defending opposing tight ends is concerned.
Smith has not thrown for multiple touchdown passes in the last seven weeks, but he has a good opportunity to end that streak this Sunday against the Tennessee Titans.