Chiefs headlines for Tuesday, November 30
Looking ahead to Sunday night, coach Vic Fangio hopes that No. 55 “makes big strides this week” in order to help slow Kansas City’s explosive offense. Chubb’s last sack came a year ago Monday, in Denver’s 31-3 loss to New Orleans at Empower Field. He knows Denver’s defense needs to make life tough on Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
“Getting after Mahomes is key,” Chubb said. “The offense revolves around No. 15… We’ve got to affect him and get him off his spot and make him change his arm angle and stuff like that, trying to make him as uncomfortable as we can.”
The Chiefs have defeated the Broncos 11 consecutive times.
“We haven’t beat them in a while, and that hatred runs deep, and when we do get over that hump everybody’s going to be rejoicing and moving on to the next one,” Chubb said. “That’s what we’ve got to do — knock this one out, and keep moving forward.”
AFC Division Winners
1. Kansas City Chiefs (13-4)
2. New England Patriots (12-5)
3. Baltimore Ravens (12-5)
4. Tennessee Titans (11-6)
As someone in the content business, I’d like to thank the Chiefs for giving us plenty of material to work with this season. We got our “What’s wrong with the Chiefs?” articles out last month, and now we’re seemingly a week or two away from a wave of “How the Chiefs turned things around” pieces.
Kansas City currently sits a game back of the Ravens in the race for the AFC’s no. 1 seed and just a half-game back of the Patriots for the no. 2 spot. And while Baltimore and New England have tricky schedules ahead, the Chiefs have the league’s 24th-hardest slate the rest of the way, according to Pro Football Focus, including three straight divisional games coming up. I’m making this pick based on the assumption that Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid will get the offense going again. The defense has started to figure things out in recent weeks, but the offense has scored more than two touchdowns in a game just once since Week 7. If Kansas City is going to make me look smart for picking it, Reid had better come out of the bye week with new strategies for beating the zone defenses his team has been seeing every week. Some improved turnover luck for Mahomes wouldn’t hurt, either.
The Broncos put away the Chargers by 15 points in a 28-13 win on Sunday, but they were forced to turn to Drew Lock for a spell as Bridgewater exited the game with a lower leg injury, which kept him out of action for much of the first half. Lock took over and looked horrible by completing 4 of 7 passes with 1 interception for only 26 yards.
Fortunately for Denver, the leg injury doesn’t look overly serious and ESPN reporter Jeremy Fowler is calling it “manageable.” Just what that means is unclear, but practice reports will tell the story as the week unfolds. Bridgewater is certainly not going to contend for any year-end awards, but he’s significantly better than Lock.
Sunday Night Football: Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs (-9.5)
What an infuriating team the Broncos are right now. A great victory over the Cowboys was followed up by a lackluster effort against the Eagles. Subsequently, they controlled the Chargers’ offense and played great defense in Week 12.
However, the Chiefs have had the Broncos’ number, having not lost since 2015. Vic Fangio is 0-4 against the Chiefs as Denver head coach. Only once has the game been decided by one score or less. This should be another comfortable Chiefs victory, and one Kansas City should cover barring any post-bye-week sloppiness.
Broncos vs. Chiefs Prediction: Chiefs 30, Broncos 17
Keyes, 24, entered the NFL with the Kansas City Chiefs in the seventh round of the 2020 draft at No. 237 overall. The 6-foot-1, 202-pound Tulane product was released from the Indianapolis Colts’ practice squad on Nov. 22 after being claimed off waivers at the 53-man roster deadline.
Through 12 career games between Kansas City and Indianapolis, Keyes has played 87 snaps on defense and 87 snaps on special teams. He’s recorded one start as well as nine tackles.
Biggest needs: DB, OT, Edge
Week 13 opponent: vs. Broncos
CG: Keep an eye on wide receiver, in addition to the three positions listed above. As one of the game’s elite tight ends, Travis Kelce somewhat masks Kansas City’s need for more production at WR opposite Tyreek Hill. But Josh Gordon was brought in for a reason, and he’s not added any juice. He’s one of four pending free agents at the position.
Projected Cap Space: $31.6 Million
The Kansas City Chiefs defense has played better in recent weeks, allowing fewer than 20 points in each of the past four games. However, they still have a massive need at safety.
Daniel Sorensen was pulled from the starting lineup after the first five weeks, but he’s remained a liability. In coverage, he has allowed an opposing passer rating of 144.0 and has played at least 35 percent of the defensive snaps in each of the last four games.
Kansas City could also use a run-stuffing linebacker, as its run defense ranks 28th in yards per attempt allowed.
Around the NFL
This one came down to the wire even though Washington dominated much of the contest, so it has to be Fuller’s timely pick during the Seahawks’ two-point try — Seattle’s first of 2021. Wilson finally came alive on the Seahawks’ last offensive possession, hitting a wide-open Freddie Swain for a touchdown to pull within two, but then Fuller stayed grounded in the end zone on the ensuing play, which the Seahawks wasted no time rolling out, to seal Washington’s last-second lead.
The suspension was issued by NFL vice president of football operations Jon Runyan for violations of unnecessary roughness and unsportsmanlike conduct rules.
“After the Las Vegas Raiders-Dallas Cowboys game on November 25, you engaged in conduct that this office considers unnecessary roughness and displays a lack of sportsmanship. Specifically, as both teams were shaking hands, you waited more than 50 seconds for your opponent at the 50-yard line. When you located him, you then walked toward him in the opposite direction of your locker room. You both engaged in a verbal chest-to-chest confrontation which you escalated by throwing an open hand punch to his facemask, forcible enough to cause your opponent’s helmet to come off,” Runyan wrote in the letter to Hill.
Initial X-rays on Sunday indicated the injury didn’t appear to be too severe, coach Matt Rhule said Monday morning. But an MRI later in the morning revealed the damage was enough to place McCaffrey on season-ending injured reserve because of the time it would take for him to recover.
McCaffrey will not need surgery provided the ankle heals properly, a source said, and he is expected to be ready for the 2022 season.
7) Aaron Rodgers is a top-three MVP candidate
I’m not just a host with great hair — I’m also an AP voter. And the MVP isn’t remotely close to being decided.
Having said that, Rodgers’ genius, domination and overall value to this Packers team have been on display every game, including the one he missed. On Sunday, Rodgers tormented the Rams’ defense with a series of “wow” throws and splash plays. Don’t be surprised if/when Rodgers takes home the hardware once again. The above statement is beyond true.
In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride
It may sound counter-productive, but one of the keys to Mahomes’ financial success has been the uncommon level of patience he has shown. When he was drafted 10th overall in the 2017 NFL draft, it would have been easy for his reps to plaster Mahomes’ face across every billboard in the country. But instead of saturating the market, Mahomes’ agent, Leigh Steinberg, wanted his client to first become acclimatized to the NFL.
“We did a whole series of endorsements … but none of them were with firms that were national where there would be billboards all across Kansas City (or) where his face would be on the air waves because that would raise the level of expectations and pressure on him,” Steinberg said.
Before he did anything else, Mahomes needed to prove his success on the field — and his patience paid off. By the end of his second season, Mahomes was the starting quarterback for the league’s most exciting offense … and the reigning NFL MVP.
Another area where patience has served Mahomes well has been in his contract negotiations. Coming off what was arguably the best two-year run of any player in NFL history, Mahomes put his faith in his representatives, trusting they would get a new contract done for him. The outcome was a contract that was somehow the largest in North American sports history — while also remaining team-friendly.
“There was never a sense of ‘We need to win this,’ or ‘We have to win this.’ This was, ‘How can we get this done?’” said Kansas City general manager Brett Veach. “And that goes back to Pat, because ultimately [Chris Cabbott] and Leigh work for Pat — and Pat has to have this long-term vision on what he wants his legacy to be.”
And that leads us to the next item.
A tweet to make you think
Praying for you @CMC_22 Wouldn’t be where I am without watching u. Thats forsure. Get Well Soon Goat!
— GLYDE (@Clydro_22) November 29, 2021
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