Become the NFL’s next great dynasty? I know, we should slow our roll and let this team develop before we start throwing around words like dynasty. But I don’t care. Let’s start to talk about it. The Chiefs are coming off their first Super Bowl championship since the 1969 season. I’m sure you’ve all seen the clip of coach Hank Strahm telling his Chiefs team to “keep matriculating the ball down the field.”
Yes, the clip is from the Chiefs’ Super Bowl win that season. Kansas City would be the first back-to-back champion since the New England Patriots won in ‘03 and ‘04. The current streak of seasons without a back-to-back champion (15) is the longest in NFL history. But that’s kind of a tribute to the parity the NFL wants.
And since we’re looking at numbers, nearly 70 percent of teams that win the Super Bowl have made the playoffs the following season. And I don’t want to point out that Andy Reid went 6-10 in the season after his last Super Bowl appearance. Because that doesn’t matter. And that was a long time ago.
1. Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes
This shouldn’t come as a surprise. It shouldn’t cause any controversy. We should all agree by now that Mahomes is far and away the best player in football regardless of position, and he just happens to play the most important position in all of sports.
Since becoming the team’s full-time starter at the beginning of the 2018 season, he is averaging 4,564 yards, 38 touchdowns, and only 8.5 interceptions per season — even though he’s missed nearly three games in that span. He won MVP in his first season as a starter by becoming the second quarterback in NFL history to throw for 5,000-plus yards and 50-plus touchdowns in a single season. He followed that up by leading the Chiefs to a championship in 2019, erasing a 24-point deficit in the span of a single quarter to kick off the team’s playoff run with a 20-point win over the Texans and eventually erasing a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl against an elite defense. Sure, his numbers in the regular season regressed after his record-setting 2018 season, but keep in mind that from 2018 to 2019, he cut his interception rate in half (from 2.1 percent to 1.0 percent). Including the playoffs, Mahomes now owns a higher winning percentage than Tom Brady.
If anyone has a chance to unseat Brady as the greatest quarterback of all time, it’s Mahomes. There’s no reason to think he’s set to decline. If anything, like Jackson, I think he’s going to keep getting better.
4. Kansas City Chiefs
Who better to shepherd Kaepernick on his transition back to the NFL than Andy Reid, who’s never shied away from polarizing QB moves and happens to have a Super Bowl-winning supporting cast? With a Lombardi Trophy under his belt and the NFL’s best young QB in tow in Patrick Mahomes, Reid can afford to dabble at the backup spot, where Kap would offer more play-making upside than Chad Henne. Speaking of Mahomes, No. 15 has been very outspoken about the NFL being more proactive to advance social justice causes, so it’s unlikely he’d put up any opposition to such a move. Imagine Kaepernick in Reid’s Chiefs offense, even as a gadget player for a single season before re-hitting the market; the potential is hard to miss.
Patrick Mahomes, QB, Chiefs
Widely considered the top player in the game, Mahomes has won league MVP and a Super Bowl before his 25th birthday. The Chiefs star is already 24-7 as a starter during the regular season and turns 25 in September.
Kansas City is one of 17 American cities currently in contention to host matches, with FIFA tabbed to select 10 sites at a later date. Each city anticipates hosting between 5-7 matches, which is estimated to generate up to $620 million in incremental economic activity according to a 2018 study done by leading global management consulting firm Boston Consulting Group.
So how can you show your support? Visit KC2026.com and sign the petition to unite alongside the three #KC2026 bid captains, all of whom are championship-winning professional sports icons in Kansas City: Sporting captain Matt Besler, Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and Royals catcher Salvador Perez. By visiting KC2026.com, individuals also have the opportunity to volunteer as a bid ambassador and make donations.
“So much goes into the stadium shows, people have no idea,” Chesney says. “Take all of that, then factor in all the other issues that come with rescheduling, making sure there aren’t conflicts with baseball or other events nearby – and maintain the kind of quality we want to bring. There were so many questions, so many unknowns, but I believe music makes a difference in people’s lives, so everyone on my team, the promoter’s team and all of the people we deal with have worked overtime trying to get this sorted out.
Around the NFL
“There were some bad plays,” Rivers said last week. “Certainly some throws I want back and certainly some very costly mistakes. I own up to all those. There was so much good and I had some throws last year that were probably as good as I’ve had my whole career.”
The San Francisco 49ers and Kyle Shanahan have agreed to new contract that keeps the head coach with team through the 2025 season, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Monday.
The team has since confirmed the news.
Shanahan earns a new contract after leading his team to Super Bowl LIV this past February. It was the culmination of one of the biggest turnarounds in NFL history.
According to NFL Research, the 2019 49ers had the second largest single-season turnaround (playoffs included) going 15-4 after a 4-12 campaign in 2018. The 11-win difference is second only to the 1999 St. Louis Rams, who had 12 more wins than there previous year after winning Super Bowl XXXIV.
How they fared: Defensive efficiency: 38.0 (last), points per game: 26.2 (last), yards per game: 360.7 (27th)
Continuity is key, and the Raiders had very little on defense in the 2010s. Hey, six different defensive coordinators in the decade does not exactly signify stability, from John Marshall to Chuck Bresnahan to Jason Tarver to Ken Norton Jr. to John Pagano to Paul Guenther. And that’s not counting a pair of heavy-handed, defensive-minded head coaches in Dennis Allen and Jack Del Rio. The Raiders have rebuilt their linebacker corps and secondary to enter the ‘20s. The focus is solely on Guenther, whose defenses are responsible for two of the eight worst single-season defensive efficiency seasons of the past decade. — Paul Gutierrez
1) CeeDee Lamb, Dallas Cowboys
Drafted: Round 1, No. 17 overall
Lamb’s Oklahoma resume shows exceptional production from the slot and an elite ability to earn yards after the catch. Lamb forced the second-most missed tackles on receptions (26, per Pro Football Focus) among FBS receivers and recorded the third-most yards after contact (376, per PFF) last season overall, but we need more context to spin all that forward to see the difference he’ll make for the Cowboys. Looking at his slot production (24.2 yards per reception from the slot, the second-most in FBS, per PFF) and his ability to operate in the middle of the field, and factoring in how defenses facing Dallas will also be forced to account for Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup, Lamb has the highest rookie wideout ranking in my model, checking in at No. 38 among all NFL receivers.
None of the players are believed to have been in their team facilities, and the teams have been following the proper health protocols. Rapoport says that one of the players who tested positive is Cowboys star running back Ezekiel Elliott. Per Patrik Walker of CBS Sports, Elliott is asymptomatic and doing well. He was tested as a precaution. Last month, NFL chief medical officer Dr. Allen Sills said that they fully expect they will have some positive cases, and the challenge would be to identify them as quickly as possible and prevent the spread. According to Rapoport, the teams appear to have done that.
“So I guess now that news is out yes I tore my other Achilles,” Brooks said in a Tweet on Monday. “But when life gives you lemons you make lemonade. I’ll be back and better than ever. Appreciate the love.”
“Well, listen, if he wants to resume his career in the NFL, then obviously it’s gonna take a team to make that decision,” Goodell said. “But I welcome that, support a club making that decision and encourage them to do that.
“If his efforts are not on the field but continuing to work in this space, we welcome him to that table and to help us, guide us, help us make better decisions about the kinds of things that need to be done in the communities. We have invited him in before, and we want to make sure that everybody’s welcome at that table and trying to help us deal with some very complex, difficult issues that have been around for a long time.
“But I hope we’re at a point now where everybody’s committed to making long-term, sustainable change.”
In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride
Breeland Speaks, defensive line
An underwhelming rookie campaign followed by a season-ending injury and four-game suspension was not the start Breeland Speaks planned for his NFL career. It is a make-or-break year for the Ole Miss product: he’ll either be motivated by the adversity or his time in Kansas City may be drawing close its end.
Speaks could be a prime candidate for a change of scenery. On the podcast, Craig suggested a linebacker-for-defensive lineman trade with the Cardinals: Haason Reddick for Breeland Speaks. I’d love a move like that to help potentially improve the linebacker position.
A tweet to make you think
We'll be rewatching the Super Bowl on Watch Party Wednesday this week! Set yourself a reminder for 6 pm ⬇️— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) June 15, 2020
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