It’s that time of year again! Arrowhead Pride staff predictions.
After an offseason of reading and hearing that Patrick Mahomes has to regress this season, I’m all here for No. 15 quickly silencing the talking-heads everywhere. Mahomes and the offense will pick up exactly where it left off from last season, racing out to a two-possession lead, a perfect position to be in against a team that isn’t built to play from behind. Chiefs 30, Jaguars 22
A few national pundits have stepped away from the pack for this game by predicting the Jaguars will prevail. I won’t be joining them. Jacksonville has retooled its offense a bit — the most noteworthy change being the addition of quarterback Nick Foles — but they’ll be facing a revamped Chiefs defense. And Patrick Mahomes has something to prove. Last season’s game against the Jaguars was one he’d like to have back. He’ll get his chance on Sunday. Only a fool would bet against him. Chiefs 35, Jaguars 21
Ron Kopp Jr.
Last time we saw these two teams matchup, the Jaguars defense was able to intercept Patrick Mahomes twice and hold the offense to 24 points. It was Jacksonville’s offense that prevented them from keeping it close. Nick Foles is the starter now and should be leading a more capable unit under offensive coordinator John DeFilippo. The Chiefs offense has improved as well, and come Week 1, Andy Reid will be dialing up some big plays for his improved arsenal of weapons. This will be a closer game than anyone wants but a victory for Kansas City nonetheless. Chiefs 27 Jaguars 20
There has been a push lately to almost sell this as a trap game, as the Chiefs are riding extremely high and the Jaguars are coming off a disappointing season. Then you hear Patrick Mahomes or Andy Reid talk about the upcoming game and there is a different kind of confidence and edge than they had even last year. When the Jaguars have the ball, it will be a power run game against a revamped front seven that has looked stout in the preseason. Frank Clark against starting left tackle Cam Robinson, who is returning from an injury, will be a key matchup to watch. When the Chiefs have the ball, look for Kansas City to yet again abuse the Jaguars’ over-aggressive defense with misdirection, screens and drag routes. Look for Jalen Ramsey to get the Chris Harris treatment (also known as get run all over the field by Tyreek Hill until completely exhausted). Chiefs 33, Jaguars 17
The Chiefs added speed to the receiving corps, and Patrick Mahomes’ timing and touch (somehow) look even better than his MVP season. They also overhauled their defense to add more power up front and more range and tenacity on the back end. The Jaguars have a defense that can slow down great offenses, but the Nick Foles led-offense lacks the firepower to keep up with a Week 1 Andy Reid game plan. Chiefs win bigger than the score indicates. Chiefs 24, Jaguars 14
There are two types of teams in the NFL: those who have Patrick Lavon Mahomes and those who do not. Say out loud the list of things that went wrong for the Chiefs last year, and you’ll appreciate the kid even more. He makes you forget the depth of adversity last year’s team experienced. That team was so deeply flawed, and yet they were still inches from a Super Bowl appearance. People have spent all offseason saying the follow up can’t be as good as year one. Don’t put limitations on the kid. He is an obvious generational talent that has surprised every step of the way. Those surprises don’t stop Week 1 in Jacksonville. Chiefs 31, Jaguars 21
Last year, the Chiefs handled Jacksonville fairly easily, shutting out the Jags in the first half and scoring 30 points without Mahomes throwing a TD. But both teams have made some significant changes to their roster since last year. Jacksonville now has Nick Foles at quarterback and will have running back Leonard Fournette available, while KC will have LeSean McCoy in their running back rotation instead of Kareem Hunt and is sporting an almost completely different defense from personnel to scheme. I think despite these changes (among others), the Chiefs defense will still be bad at defending the run, and Patrick Mahomes will still outperform whoever the Jags have at quarterback. The more things change, the more they stay the same. Chiefs 30, Jaguars 14
I can’t wait to see what Big Red has been planning all offseason. The Chiefs offense will be the focal point but I’m just as excited to see the new-look defense. Frank Clark and Tyrann Matheiu have the potential to be big additions and Chris Jones is still angling for the new contract, so I expect a monster season out of him. This game will be surprisingly low-scoring as we kick off the 2019 season. Chiefs 24, Jaguars 17
Every team in the NFL is motivated for Week 1, but I think the Chiefs are on a different level this year. Patrick Mahomes is eager to rid himself of the taste of the AFC championship loss and show that he benefits from studying film just as much as defenses do. Tyreek Hill has plenty to prove as well, and he’ll reward the team for sticking with him, as they work to give him with a new contract. The Spags-lead defense will stand up and show they are more of a bully than a victim of bullying unlike previous Chiefs teams. Expect the offense to get everyone involved: Mecole Hardman might continue his touchdown streak, along with big plays from Travis Kelce and Hill. It’s all coming together starting Sunday. Chiefs 45, Jaguars 17
I think in later weeks (with regular-season tape), teams will have a better chance, but unfortunately, Andy Reid has had a whole offseason to design plays for what could be a Pro Bowl offense. The Jaguars sensed this, and I think that is at least part of the reason why they added Chase Litton to the practice squad. I’m not sure it helps. Chiefs 42, Jaguars 21
Who wins Chiefs-Jaguars?
This poll is closed
Chiefs in a blowout
Chiefs in a close game
Jags in a close game
Jags in a blowout