Ever since the disappointing result in the AFC Championship game last season, fans of the Buffalo Bills have been waiting for the rematch to see if they can finally overcome the Kansas City Chiefs. Well the time is finally here in primetime as these two powerhouses will once again battle. To preview the game we talked to Tom Childs over at Arrowhead Pride, SB Nation’s Chiefs blog.
1) Everyone is saying that the defense appears to be the weak point again this season. What do they need to improve?
Where do I start? It’s been bad, I mean really bad. They can’t stop anything right now - not even that famously great Eagles offense..... Yes, Frank Clark returning may result in the Chiefs’ defensive line applying some pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Yes, Willie Gay Jr returning may result in the Chiefs’ linebackers being able to hold up in coverage for a change. Am I confident in either of these two returning players make a huge difference? Not particularly. It’s a mess right now.
2) How would you grade the new offensive line after it was the focus in the offseason?
Considering they have only been together for four games, I feel inclined to give them an A+. Are they perfect? No. But considering the level of responsibility and expectation placed on their shoulders, they are extremely deserving of all of the praise coming their way - especially the three young guys. The thought of this unit being together for four years minimum is very exciting.
3) What are the expectation for new receiver Josh Gordon?
In simple terms: to take some pressure of Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. Every single week the Chiefs see so much attention put on their two star pass-catchers. For the most part, the Chiefs have done an excellent job in handling this. However, if and it’s a big IF, Josh Gordon can come in and play at 75% of his ability, then he will automatically come in as the Chiefs third pass catcher. The guys he is replacing (Demarcus Robinson and Mecole Hardman) simply aren’t getting open by themselves - and are so dependent on scheme to get theirs. If we get Josh Gordon at 90 - 100%, then they sky is the limit for this offense.
4) How was the defense able to handle the Bills firepower so well last season?
Your guess is as good as mine but for some reason the Chiefs defense seemed to handle their business when facing Buffalo. Was it scheme or personnel? Maybe. Or was it mentality? I’ve said recently that the Bills feel like they have always been a year or two behind the Chiefs in terms of their journey to a Super Bowl. In the AFC Championship Game, the Bills looked like a team that hadn’t been there before, while the Chiefs looked like a team that had been there and literally won the t-shirt.
5) It’s only Week 5 but do you agree that this game could very well decide home-field advantage?
It’s probably going to end up as the single regular season game with the biggest stakes. A win for Buffalo opens a grand canyon-sized hole between the two teams, while a win for Kansas City will make the race for the number 1 seed very interesting. It may even bring some of the other AFC hopefuls back into the race. Being an Englishman, I want to use the soccer term for a game like this: a six-pointer.
While I’m here, I will throw in a prediction for you. I’m sure we all have memories of the game in 2008 when the Bills marched into Arrowhead and put on an offensive clinic against a Chiefs defense that couldn’t stop anything. That’s how I feel like Sunday plays out. KC will get theirs but their defensive deficiencies will be too much for even Patrick Mahomes to handle. Chiefs 41 Bills 53.