Kansas City Chiefs (10-4)
No. 2 seed: A much more likely outcome, the Chiefs need to win out and have the Patriots lose to either the Bills in Week 16 or the Dolphins in Week 17. The Chiefs would land the No. 2 spot and a first-round bye thanks to their head-to-head tiebreaker.
No. 3 seed: The most likely outcome, given the various Vegas spreads for the six games involving the top three teams in the AFC. KC, New England, and Baltimore will all be favored in their final two games. If they all win those games, the Chiefs will land the third seed.
What to watch: Patrick Mahomes and Mitchell Trubisky
Mitchell Trubisky was asked this week about facing Patrick Mahomes, the reigning MVP whom Chicago passed on to take Trubisky no. 2 in 2017.
”The comparisons are out there and they are never going to stop,” Trubisky told reporters. “It’s kind of me, Pat, and Deshaun [Watson] are kind of all grouped together because we are in the same draft class, drafted in the first round and all that. But there are no do-overs. We are where we are.”
Chiefs -6 at Bears
Patrick Mahomes showed again last week how much he can thrive in any elements. If he has to again this week, no big deal. The Bears defense is still good -- but not great. And the Chiefs’ much-improved defense will suffocate Chicago’s pop gun attack. This could get really lopsided. The Chiefs know Bears coach Matt Nagy inside out, and maybe Vegas is a little too caught up in Mitchell Trubisky flashing here and there the last few weeks, because I believe this is a double-digit beatdown.
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS: Suggs already impressing Spagnuolo
The Chiefs aren’t saying exactly how he’ll be used, but they’re already impressed with his professionalism. “This is a different environment,” said Chiefs defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo on Thursday. “It’s all new and different to him. He got in here late the other night, and then he came in here (Wednesday). I don’t know how much sleep he’s had; not very much. The most impressive thing, and I think all of our players got their eyeballs on it, too -- you come into the meeting, and he had a spiral notebook, and he was taking notes. That’s Terrell Suggs. He’s a pro.”
Kansas City: The Chiefs have quietly gotten major contributions from this rookie class, especially late in the season. It’s all been a bonus for the best team in the division. The Chiefs, who traded their first-round pick to Seattle for pass-rusher Frank Clark, are happy with his contributions, of course, but the youngsters are coming through as well. Second-round pick, receiver/returner Mecole Hardman, is an explosive option behind Tryeek Hill.
Safety Juan Thornhill is already a playmaker and may have a huge future, and was another second-round score. In the third round, the Chiefs took defensive tackle Khalen Saunders, and he is playing well. The Chiefs are also getting contributions from sixth rounders, cornerback Rashad Fenton and running back Darwin Thompson. This class illustrates how good general manager Brett Veach is and, while the Chiefs don’t appear to be a young team, they are set for the future as well as the present.
Around the NFL
Second Team: Marcus Peters, Ravens
Peters has a risk-taking style that’s not for everyone, but he’s parlayed that aggressiveness into some huge plays for the Ravens this season. That includes a Week 7 pick-six against the Seahawks. After initially falling off his receiver in an attempt to undercut a route on the sideline, Peters was able to bait Russell Wilson into a late throw and return it 67 yards for a crucial touchdown. Peters occasionally shirks his assignments to read the QB’s eyes and hunt interceptions, which can be anxiety-inducing, but when it works, it can win a team games.
Prescott had declared his availability earlier in the week, saying Thursday “I’ll be good to go” against the Eagles.
He had been limited at practice for the first time in his career Wednesday. He also didn’t throw Thursday but was seen making light throws with little velocity during the portion of Friday’s practice that was open to the media.
Buffalo Bills don’t commit a single turnover vs. top-ranked Pats D
The AFC East clash between the New England Patriots and Buffalo Bills on Saturday is bound to be a good one. In their Week 4 meeting, the Patriots came out victorious by a narrow margin, winning 16-10. This weekend’s contest will likely be decided by one thing: turnovers. The Patriots’ defense, which ranks No. 1 in the NFL in several metrics, leads the league in takeaways with 36, and holding onto the ball is something Josh Allen and the Bills’ offense has struggled to do at times. Allen has fumbled 14 times this season (four were lost), and he threw three picks his last time out against New England. This weekend, though, the Bills won’t commit a single turnover against Bill Belichick’s vaunted unit, which is ultimately enough to lead them to victory.
WIDE RECEIVER (10): Lance Alworth, Raymond Berry*, Larry Fitzgerald, Marvin Harrison, Elroy Hirsch, Don Hutson*, Steve Largent, Randy Moss, Jerry Rice*, Paul Warfield.
In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride
It’s not clear exactly clear what is keeping Wylie — who has not practiced this week — from the field. At first, he was said to have an ankle injury sustained in the 23-3 victory over the Denver Broncos on Sunday. But later designations have also indicated a shoulder injury and an illness.
Reid said that Stefen Wisniewski or Cameron Erving would step into Wylie’s place on the offensive line.
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