Last year, the Chiefs won in the AFC Championship Game to head to the Super Bowl, and the Bills spent all offseason sitting around and thinking what could’ve been.
When these teams face off again on Sunday, for the second time this season nonetheless, so much will be at stake. Still, Patrick Mahomes and his team are firing on all cylinders, and here are three reasons why the Chiefs will end the Bills’ season once again.
3. The Chiefs much-improved defense is much different than last time these teams met
A week ago, the Chiefs just frustrated the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Wild Card game. Now, the Bills offense compared to the Steelers offense is night and day, but still, the Kansas City unit played an excellent game.
The Steelers didn’t score an offensive touchdown in the first half, and it took a 35-7 Chiefs lead for Pittsburgh to get a score on offense finally.
Moreover, the Chiefs held opponents to 10 or fewer points in four of the last eight games. Steve Spagnuolo’s unit is ranked 8th in points allowed per game (21.4) and 12th in interceptions. The question is, can they contain Allen and the dangerous Bills offense that just embarrassed the New England Patriots?
When these two met earlier in the season, the Bills scored 38 points at Arrowhead Stadium. However, the Kansas City defense has come a long way since then and might be playing its best football of the season.
2. The Chiefs rejuvenated offense, with Travis Kelce breaking NFL records
The Kansas City offense was electric against the Steelers to begin the playoffs. Travis Kelce did everything — including throwing a touchdown pass — and made NFL history.
Jerick McKinnon came out of nowhere to do everything for Eric Bieniemy’s offense, and five players scored a touchdown against the Steelers — including offensive lineman Nick Allegretti. Patrick Mahomes threw five scores and over 400 yards as they cruised to a 42-21 victory.
The Chiefs have scored 28 or more points in the last six games and 34 or more in four of those contests.
The early-season struggles are over for this group, and with Kelce, Tyreek Hill, and Mahomes playing at a high level, the Bills could be in trouble.
1. Patrick Mahomes
What else needs to be said here?
Even in a “down” year, Mahomes threw for 4,839 yards with 37 touchdowns despite a career-high 13 interceptions. He finished in the top-5 in passing yards and touchdowns and found a way to shake off the struggles at the beginning of the year to capture another AFC West crown.
Oh, and Mahomes’ postseason numbers at Arrowhead Stadium are unreal.
When it matters, Mahomes tends to rise to the challenge more often than not. Sure, the Bills beat the Chiefs earlier this year in Kansas City, but this is a much different team than from back then.
Mahomes has 15 touchdown passes and just two interceptions over his past five games and has two 400-plus yard outings among those.
Even despite all that, there is a reason the Chiefs have been to back-to-back Super Bowls, and #15 is a large part of that.
Don’t ever count out Patrick Mahomes. If he can channel his Super Bowl MVP form from a few years back, the Bills will be left wondering what if for the second straight season.
Stats Courtesy of Pro Football Reference