Saturday, Aug. 13
Chiefs at Bears
Time: 1 p.m. ET
TV: NFL+, NFL Network
Andy Reid said the starters will play the first quarter of this game, so all eyes will be on Kansas City’s wide receiver rotation while Patrick Mahomes is under center. JuJu Smith-Schuster, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Skyy Moore, Mecole Hardman ... who gets snaps, and where do they line up? Matt Eberflus indicated that his starters will get some time as well, so keep an eye on both Justin Fields and the offensive line in front of him.
The Chiefs’ piece of the national pie last year jumped 12% to $347.2 million. The team’s cut in 2020 was $309.2 million. All 32 NFL teams receive the same amount from the National Football League’s national revenue, which consists primarily of its broadcast rights.
We know how much the Chiefs received thanks to the Green Bay Packers, which must report finances because it has public shareholders.
The increase in national revenue resulted from the NFL adding a 17th regular-season game for each team beginning last season, which boosted TV revenue, along with an additional prime-time playoff game, more sponsorship revenue and annual increases in national TV money due to existing contracts.
According to digital sports media company Sportico, the Chiefs took in $505 million in revenue last season, meaning the league share accounts for almost 69% of the team’s revenue. Sportico valued the team at $3.54 billion, good enough for 20th in the NFL and 29th for all sports franchises in North America.
According to NFL analyst Robert Griffin III, Mahomes needs to develop some serious chemistry with his new-look team if the Chiefs want to make another Super Bowl run in 2022.
“Patrick Mahomes wants to WIN IT ALL every year. Doing it without Tyreek and only 1 of his top 4 WRs from last year returning in Mecole Hardman would be LEGENDARY. With a bunch of new faces, CHEMISTRY WILL BE KEY. Mahomes, Kelce and Andy Reid are ready to get their Walter White on,” RG3 wrote on Twitter.
3 - Patrick Mahomes
The Chiefs have fielded the NFL’s No. 1 scoring and total offense since Mahomes took the starting reins in 2018, with the quarterback racking up a 49-13 record in the process. There’s simply no ceiling when it comes to Mahomes’ ability and where he can take this team — even without Tyreek Hill. This fall will present a new test for the 26-year-old signal-caller, but who’s going to be shocked if the Chiefs are playing in the AFC Championship Game for the fifth straight year? No one. That’s who.
2022 best case scenario
The best case scenario for Kelce is to be the No. 1 fantasy football player at his position and continue his trajectory as one of the top pass-catching tight ends of all time. Until this past season, he finished as the No. 1 tight end in average fantasy points per game three years in a row. There is no reason to think he cannot get back to that level.
2022 worst case scenario
The worst case scenario is always an injury especially when you’ll need to spend a high draft pick on Kelce to get him in standard leagues. Outside of an injury, it’s possible Hill’s quickness and speed was more valuable to the Chiefs than we thought, and the offense takes a slight dip with fewer red-zone trips. I’m grasping for straws here because it’s hard to imagine a significant drop in production for Kelce.
Around the NFL
The Jets’ second-year quarterback left the game with just over four minutes remaining in the first quarter. The injury occurred on a seven-yard run by Wilson, who cut hard on his right knee before falling to the turf.
Wilson went 3 of 5 for 23 yards that included an ugly interception to Eagles linebacker Kyzir White. The pick set up the Eagles’ second touchdown, a one-yard plunge by running back Jason Huntley. New York finally found the end zone midway through the third quarter, when Zonovan Knight found pay dirt from two yards out
Watson’s “lack of expressed remorse” was cited as an “aggravating” factor in disciplinary officer Susan L. Robinson’s report detailing her decision to issue him a six-game suspension for violating the league’s personal-conduct policy. Browns team contributor Aditi Kinkhabwala asked Watson prior to the team’s preseason opener on Friday what his response was to Robinson’s determination that he lacked remorse.
“I want to say that I’m truly sorry to all of the women that I have impacted in this situation,” said Watson, who was first accused of sexual misconduct in March 2021. “The decisions that I made in my life that put me in this position I would definitely like to have back, but I want to continue to move forward and grow and learn and show that I am a true person of character and I am going to keep pushing forward.”
Watson started Friday’s 24-13 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars throwing two incompletions on the opening drive. Watson did not attempt a pass on Cleveland’s second drive, which ended with a D’Ernest Johnson fumble.
Watson played one more series and ended his night 1 of 5 for 7 yards. Cleveland failed to earn a first down on all three possessions with Watson under center.
Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins has tested positive for COVID-19, coach Kevin O’Connell said Friday. Cousins will be required to isolate for at least five days, meaning he will not travel with the team for Sunday’s preseason opener against the Las Vegas Raiders.
Barring complications, Cousins would be eligible to rejoin the team Tuesday for the final week of training camp. O’Connell said Cousins’ symptoms are minimal.
The Vikings sent Cousins home from training camp Thursday after he fell ill but did not immediately confirm the diagnosis.
“I like the way he handled it,” O’Connell said, “reporting the symptoms and just going through our in-house process here. I’m proud of how he did that, looking out for his teammates and making sure that we’ll get him back ready to roll as soon as possible.”
In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride
2. The duo of hard-hitting rookies
Not everything about football is easy for the casual viewer to pick up on — but if a specific twosome of rookies lives up to their initial reputation, they should stand out to anyone watching.
Defensive end George Karlaftis and linebacker Leo Chenal will both be taking their first NFL snaps. I’ll be observing how notable their power is in their play — if it looks overwhelming for the opponent or if it’s handled pretty well.
For Karlaftis, it’ll be interesting to see how he’s deployed with the starting defense; Mike Danna has been taking the first snaps over Karlaftis in training camp, but Karlaftis should be worked in based on how that’s been handled in team periods at camp. Look to see if he’s aligned in a creative fashion or a part of the NASCAR pass-rush package when he’s in.
Chenal won’t have the same opportunity to contribute to the starting defense this game — veteran Elijah Lee has been working as the starting SAM linebacker over Chenal — but he should get plenty of playing time throughout the game. Watch for his impressive run-defense skills, but also to see if he gets any opportunities to blitz or rush the passer; he was impressive at getting after the quarterback at Wisconsin.