The short of it is that the Chiefs could jump up to the No. 2 seed and a bye with a win over the Los Angeles Chargers (5-10) and an unlikely New England Patriots (12-3) loss to the Miami Dolphins (4-11) — or the Chiefs could drop to the No. 4 seed with a loss to the Los Angeles Chargers and the Houston Texans (10-5) defeating the Tennessee Titans (8-7) later in the afternoon.
Since Texans-Titans is a late game set to start at 3:25 p.m. Arrowhead Time, the Chiefs won’t know the result until well after their game is over, so it sounds like that will be enough of a reason for Kansas City to take a business-as-usual approach.
“We’re going into play and do the best we possibly can do — that’s how we’re going to roll with it,” said Chiefs head coach Andy Reid on Tuesday. “There are things at stake. You’ve got to finish the season. I’ve sat here on the other side of it and sat guys — that’s not this situation, so you want to play to win, and that’s what we’re going to do.”
Quarterback Patrick Mahomes echoed the words of his head coach.
“We’re still building — I think that’s the biggest thing,” said Mahomes. “I know we’re at the end of the season, but I feel like every single week, you could see this team’s getting better. And we want to have that momentum of going out there and playing our best football going into the playoffs. We understand that the Chargers are a really good football team, and we know it’s going to be a great challenge, so we’re going to come in with the mindset that we’ve had these last few weeks of playing our best football.”
Assuming the Chiefs are able to get their sixth consecutive win, the Dolphins could gift them with an extra week off. As of this writing, the Dolphins are 16-point underdogs, but anything is possible.
“You never know in this business,” added Reid.