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Arrowheadlines: The Broncos are optimistic that Drew Lock will be good to go this Saturday

Chiefs headlines for Wednesday, January 5

Kansas City Chiefs v Denver Broncos Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

The latest

Broncos are ‘hopeful’ Drew Lock can start against KC Chiefs but concerns remain | Kansas City Star

Lock said Sunday he received a shot that allowed him to return to the game. “I just needed to go in and get a little shot in it and come back out,” Lock told reporters. “No way was I going to stand on that sideline with what it was.

Shoot it up, come back out and give it everything I got.” Lock has completed 55 of 87 passes for 625 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions this season.

In three career games against the Chiefs, Lock completed 52.8% of his passes (51 of 108) for 613 yards with two touchdowns and five interceptions. Fangio said he is “hopeful” Lock will be able to start against the Chiefs.

“The week will tell. If we had to practice today, obviously he wouldn’t practice,” Fangio told reporters Monday.

“But we’re hopeful he’ll be able to improve as the week goes and end up being the quarterback.”

The First Read, Week 18: How Antonio Brown’s meltdown has sealed Bucs’ fate; Joe Burrow rising | NFL.com

Losers

2 - Kansas City Chiefs

DEFENSE

The one lingering concern about Kansas City’s defensive dominance over a recent eight-game winning streak revealed itself in Sunday’s loss to Cincinnati: a good quarterback blessed with talented skill players can still give this team fits. Joe Burrow threw for 446 yards, Ja’Marr Chase had 266 receiving yards and the Chiefs inexplicably gave up a first down on a third-and-27. In fact, here’s a stat worth noting as the playoffs near: The four best quarterbacks Kansas City has faced this season — Josh Allen, Justin Herbert, Lamar Jackson and Burrow — have thrown 14 touchdown passes and just three interceptions against this unit. The Chiefs went 1-4 against them.

Dream Trade Sends 3-Time 1,000-Yard Receiver to Chiefs Before Playoffs | Heavy.com

Dream Pre-Postseason Trade: Cooks to Chiefs

Kristopher Knox of Bleacher Report examined one trade each NFL playoff team wishes it could make before the postseason and has Kansas City trading for 3-time 1,000-yard receiver Brandin Cooks of the Houston Texans.

“The Kansas City Chiefs have been searching for a potent No. 3 receiver to partner with Tyreek Hill, Mecole Hardman and tight end Travis Kelce. This is why they took a flier on Josh Gordon in 2021, though the experiment hasn’t yielded much in the way of production. Entering Week 17, Gordon had only five catches for 32 yards and a touchdown,” Knox wrote.

“Cooks is under contract through 2022 and probably wouldn’t come at a bargain-basement price. If Kansas City could snap him up for, say, a second-round pick, it could forge a receiving corps that opponents couldn’t hope to contain.”

NFL Week 18 picks: Raiders shock Chargers to earn playoff berth, Colts crush Jaguars, Rams beat 49ers | CBS Sports

Kansas City (11-5) at Denver (7-9)

Saturday, 4:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)

Latest Odds:

Kansas City Chiefs -10

If the Chiefs want to have any shot at earning the top overall seed in the AFC, they have to win this game. On the other hand, Denver has nothing to play for except to maybe save Vic Fangio’s job, but based on how this season has gone so far for the Broncos, I’d say that’s probably not going to be enough motivation for them.

Patrick Mahomes has never lost to the Broncos and the Chiefs have won 12 straight games against Denver. I’ve made a lot of bad decisions in my life, but picking the Broncos to win will not be one of them.

The pick: Chiefs 30-17 over Broncos

The Chargers most likely first-round opponent if they make the playoffs | FanSided

The LA Chargers most likely first-round opponent in the playoffs is the Kansas City Chiefs

If they make the playoffs then the LA Chargers will most likely be the seventh seed. They could be the sixth seed if the Indianapolis Colts lose to the Jacksonville Jaguars but that is just not going to happen. The Jaguars are downright awful and were blown out by a similar team in the New England Patriots in Week 17.

With that being said, the Chargers are most likely to play the second seed in the AFC and the Kansas City Chiefs have all the makings of being that opponent. The Chiefs are the current second seed in the conference and there is a very slim chance that they move either up or down.

To move up the Chiefs would need the Tennessee Titans to lose in Week 18. The Titans are playing the lowly Houston Texans and while they lost to Houston earlier this season, the chances of them losing to the Texans when the no. 1 seed is on the line is slim to none.

Around the NFL

Aaron Rodgers implies COVID vaccination status might get in the way of winning fourth MVP award | USA Today

During Rodgers’ weekly appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show,” the boisterous host proudly proclaimed the Green Bay Packers quarterback as the league MVP already.

Rodgers isn’t so sure.

“Let’s not put the cart before the horse,” Rodgers said.

“We did last year,” McAfee confidently replied.

Rodgers said the 2020 season was different. This year, Rodgers said, “certain statuses might come into play.”

Rodgers, of course, is referring to his COVID-19 vaccination status, implying that voters won’t give him his proper due because of his off-the-field views and actions surrounding the coronavirus and his stance on not being vaccinated.

When asked this summer if he was vaccinated, Rodgers gave a misleading statement by saying he was “immunized.”

Cleveland Browns QB Baker Mayfield to have shoulder surgery ASAP, won’t play Sunday | ESPN

Browns coach Kevin Stefanski said Mayfield’s surgery could happen as soon as this week. A league source told ESPN that Mayfield could be back in time to participate in OTAs.

Mayfield, who has been playing with the shoulder injury since Week 2, admitted following Monday night’s loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers that he was “pretty damn beat up.” Mayfield was sacked nine times in the game.

“I’ve continued to lay it out on the line when I haven’t been healthy and tried to fight for our guys,” said Mayfield, who’s been playing with a harness on the shoulder to prevent it from popping out of place. “Now it’s time for me to start looking at what’s in the best interest of me and my health.”

Titans LB Bud Dupree cited for misdemeanor assault following altercation at pharmacy | NFL.com

According to police, Dupree and his attorney met with detectives Tuesday morning, and he is scheduled to report for booking in three weeks.

According to a Monday police statement, an alleged dispute began after a male employee started taking video with his phone of Dupree. A 20-year-old male employee of Walgreens was treated for a cut on his forehead and a 21-year-old female employee was treated for a cut to her hand, police said.

Following an argument the subjects left the store, per the citation, but then re-entered with Dupree, who then grabbed store clerk Greg Butler, 20, and his phone. The two proceeded to get into a physical altercation, per the citation.

Philadelphia Eagles QB Jalen Hurts reflects on railing collapse, seeks ‘what could be done to make sure it doesn’t happen again’ | ESPN

In his letter, Hurts asked “what follow-up action is being considered in response to the near-tragic incident that took place at FedEx Field on January 2, 2022.

“Through the initial shock, my first reaction was to assist those involved. However, while I displayed a calm composure, I understand the severity of what happened and am extremely concerned for the well-being of the fans and media. As a result, I would like to know what safeguards the NFL and the Washington Football Team are implementing to prevent this from ever occurring in the future.”

In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride

Against Bengals, Chiefs’ ‘Freeway’ play-call came much too late

But according to Hitchens, the Chiefs did ultimately decide to just let Cincinnati score; defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo called, “Freeway” over the radio headset installed in Hitchens’ helmet.

“Actually, right before they took a knee, we were going to let them score,” revealed Hitchens. “We call [the play] ‘Freeway.’ So we were trying to stop them — obviously — then once they got the penalty and got first-and-goal from the one, we were going ‘Freeway’ to let them score and try and get the ball back to our offense and Pat (Mahomes). But they did the smart thing and just kneeled it out — and then ended up kicking the field goal.”

But even without the final Cincinnati kneel-down, it probably would have been too late for it to make much difference. In the end, the Chiefs missed multiple opportunities to make the call — and even with less than a minute remaining, the Bengals were willing to do almost anything to keep the ball from getting back into Mahomes’ hands.

A tweet to make you think

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