The Starting 11: The Offseason Acquisitions That Are Shaping the NFL Playoff Race | The Ringer
The Chiefs front office responded this offseason by making tweaks to every level of the defense. That started at coordinator, where Kansas City fired Bob Sutton and replaced him with longtime NFL coach Steve Spagnuolo. On the personnel side, general manager Brett Veach swung an aggressive trade for Seahawks defensive end Frank Clark and handed safety Tyrann Mathieu a market-setting three-year, $42 million deal (with $26.8 million guaranteed). Clark hasn’t been quite the pass-rushing force that the Chiefs envisioned, but Mathieu has been a steady presence who’s helped reshape the Kansas City secondary. And he’s not the only one.
Chiefs finally have the defense they hoped for when they overhauled | ESPN
Clark said the defense earlier in the season wouldn’t have played the kind of game it did in New England.
”Not at all,” he said. “It comes with the trials and tribulations. ... You’re seeing the results of all the stuff we had to go through back then, the losing, the failure, us not being able to close out a game.
”The only way to get that back to normal is by winning and winning when it’s on the defense.”
Why Chris Broussard Believes Chiefs Were Foolish To Trash Talk | NESN
“I don’t like it. I think it was foolish,” Broussard said Tuesday on FOX Sports 1’s “First Things First.” Number one, but for some horrible calls by the officials, you may have lost that game, maybe. It wasn’t a done deal that New England would have won, but you may have lost that game, number one. Two, they put great pressure on (Tom) Brady and they are a good pass defense actually, but overall their defense isn’t strong and against the run they’re horrible. You look at Bill Belichick, you know this a coach that makes adjustments. I wouldn’t be surprised if in that game — they’re not showing everything to Kansas City. They’re just trying to get data and see what Kansas City may do when they see them in the playoffs. So they’re going to make the adjustments. I think they’re going to try to expose them. They’ll probably run the football very well if they meet Kansas City in the playoffs.
It will be ‘very, very cold’ in Kansas City, and there’s a chance of snow on Sunday | Kansas City Star
“It is going to be very, very cold outside,” said Ritter, who provides weather updates to The Star. “We are expecting temperatures to stay around the freezing mark during the afternoon.”
There will be sunshine with a few clouds mixing in, she said. The cold won’t stick around for very long, though.
The post-Tom Brady future of AFC quarterbacks is in great hands | SB Nation
The New England Patriots have lost three times this season to teams whose quarterbacks are all under the age of 25. The most recent, 24-year-old Patrick Mahomes, went into Foxborough on Sunday and led his team to a 23-16 victory to clinch the AFC West. He joined 24-year-old Deshaun Watson and 22-year-old Lamar Jackson as part of an elite trio of young AFC quarterbacks who have bested 42-year-old Tom Brady and company.
2020 Offensive Pro Bowlers: Lamar Jackson, George Kittle locks | NFL.com
Tight end: Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs
Kelce is one of the biggest mismatches in the game, as he’s able to make play after play no matter who’s defending him. With three games left in the season, Kelce is 11 receiving yards shy of becoming the first tight end in league history to record four consecutive 1,000-yard receiving seasons. That nugget alone tells us everything we need to know about what he means to the Chiefs’ offense.
2020 NFL Mock Draft: Jaguars take quarterback, Raiders add deep threat, Cowboys get playmaker in secondary | CBS Sports
Round 1 - Pick 26
Dylan Moses LB
The Chiefs defense came into Week 14 ranked 15th, according to Football Outsiders, but they struggled to find consistency from their linebackers. Moses changes that. He missed the season after tearing his ACL in August, but he was our No. 1 LB coming into 2019 and if he’s healthy he’s a first-round talent.
Fantasy Football Week 15 Quarterback Preview: Can you trust Patrick Mahomes, Russell Wilson? | CBS Fantasy
Mahomes is at home against the Broncos. The last time he faced them he left the game with a knee injury. They’re only allowing 16.1 Fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. But I just can’t get away from him. The Chiefs have an implied total of 28 based on the Vegas total and they still can’t run the ball very well at all. The solid play of Drew Lock in Week 14 makes me hope the Broncos can keep this close enough for Mahomes to approach 35 attempts. He’s mostly been good when he’s thrown that often.
Around the NFL
Bill Belichick on video: ‘I have no involvement in this’ | NFL.com
“I mean, I had no idea what it was about,” he said Tuesday. “Then, you know, I got an explanation, I think the organization released that explanation or something similar to that. That’s really all I know about it.”
Source: NFL salary cap to climb up to $196.8M-$201.2M range | ESPN
This marks a 40% increase from five years ago in the 2015 season ($143.3 million) and is anticipated to be the seventh consecutive year the cap is projected to climb more than $10 million per club year over year.
The cap for the first year of the current CBA in 2011 was $120.375 million. Since 2011, the cap has increased roughly 65% and $76 million per club.
In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride
Let’s Argue: “The Chiefs were bailed out against the Patriots”
While bad officiating may have been one of the reasons the Chiefs beat New England, it wasn’t the only reason.
On the drive where the Pats had a touchdown revoked, they still had first-and-goal after that play — and still failed to get into the end zone. Including that drive, the Patriots had three chances to tie the game and force overtime — but each time, the Chiefs defense was able to keep them at bay.
The Chiefs were penalized 10 times for 136 yards. New England had five for 25 yards. Patrick Mahomes was battling an injured hand. The team had to overcome an early 7-0 deficit — one that was largely fueled by two penalties against Kansas City.
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