As Arnold Schwarznegger famously said in Predator: “If it bleeds, we can kill it!” On Sunday, losing 31-24 to the Houston Texans, the Kansas City Chiefs were made to show weakness. Now, with Patrick Mahomes licking his wounds, expect a reaction on Thursday night as they face off against the Denver Broncos.
The AFC West clash in the Empower Field at Mile High will not be an easy trip for the Super Bowl contenders, especially with the visiting quarterback still suffering from an ankle knock. He may hobble into Denver, but Mahomes will know the Chiefs are averaging 28.7 points this season and haven’t lost in their last seven visits to Colorado.
Even with issues, the QB still threw for 273 yards against the JJ Watt and Co. Tyreek Hill is another week closer to full fitness, plus they could also welcome Sammy Watkins back to the receiving core.
Scoring has never been the issue this season, but Joe Flacco et al will be hoping the Chiefs defence continues to struggle.
Deshaun Watson went for 280 yards on 42 attempts and Carlos Hyde ran for 116 last week. With Royce Freeman and Phillip Lindsay starting to shine in their timeshare along the ground, they could be a handful for a struggling D.
Only twice this term has a Chiefs game failed to produce 50 points, with three going over the 60 mark. When you have a red hot offence, but a defence rated 27th by NFL.com, it doesn’t matter who they are playing, points are guaranteed.
Through six games, Patrick Mahomes has thrown 14 touchdowns, putting him on track for 37 at the end of the season. It’s not quite the 50 from last year, but still would have ranked him third out of all QBs – and Andrew Luck on 39 has retired.
So far, Aaron Rodgers is the best gun-slinger the Broncos have faced and the Packers put up 27 points. Mahomes is averaging over two touchdown passes per game and with his weapons back on the field and a point to prove, regardless of his fitness, this could be a huge week.
The Chiefs might need him to be at his best if the game turns into a shootout, and if Gardner Minshew can throw two touchdown passes against the Broncos, why can’t the 2018 MVP go one better?
It took him a few weeks to get going, but under Vic Fangio, but Phillip Lindsay is beginning to hit his stride. His success hasn’t just come along the ground, but as a third-down pass catcher too.
Three times this season he has picked up more than 30 yards in the air, although he has yet to catch a touchdown. In the opening two games he was restricted to under 50 yards on the ground, but in his past four appearances he has racked up 81, 53, 114 and 70 yards, with four TDs over that stretch.
Tenneesse have a good defence, but Lindsay still had 75 yards from scrimmage. Over six games the Titans have given up an average of 321.8 yards per game, compared to the Chiefs up at 406.2. At 161.8 yards, only two sides in the NFL give up more ground yards than the AFC West defence.
Although they will struggle to contain the visitors on Thursday, the Chiefs are in no place to stop Lindsay having a big day and continuing his great form.