Malcolm Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

Sports Illustrated Calls Chiefs Super Bowl Contenders

According to Sports Illustrated, the 2012 Kansas City Chiefs have a legitimate shot to be Super Bowl contenders this year.

Seriously. It’s is all there in black and white. The bomb dropped at the end of SI’s team preview for KC’s season and comes from Tom Mantzouranis who is clearly a brilliant man.

This is a very talented team, there’s no doubt about that. That talent alone should get it to the playoffs easily, even in an AFC West that has a reloading Chargers and a Peyton Manning-led Broncos team.

But how far the Chiefs go in the postseason is up to Cassel and Crennel. Both are good enough to not get in the way. But can they be even better? If so, I dare say that the Chiefs have a chance to be legitimate Super Bowl contenders.

Fans have been pretty excited about this Chiefs team for weeks now but it appears as though Kansas City is starting to get noticed on a national level, something that usually only happens when the team is playing Tim Tebow.

Often times national writers have a vague understanding of the finer details of teams like the Chiefs that are not often in the spotlight. This writeup on the Chiefs, however, is spot on.

While so many other national writers and pundits (John Clayton) are using Matt Cassel as a reason to predict another 7-9 record for the Chiefs, Mr. Mantzouranis seems to understand the situation a bit better. In his preview, he points to the 2010 season as clear proof that Cassel is not a hindrance to a talented team. He reasons that since this 2012 team is significantly more talented than the 2010 version, the Chiefs should reach the playoffs easily.

That’s right, easily. Let’s look at that quote again:

That talent alone should get it to the playoffs easily, even in an AFC West that has a reloading Chargers and a Peyton Manning-led Broncos team.

EVEN with Peyton Manning.

He’s right.

Manning in his usual form should be able to lift the Broncos to the top of the division but even with him there is no question that KC has a better and deeper team. If the Chiefs stay healthy, they very well could resemble the San Fransisco 49ers of 2011.

We learned in 2011 that anything that can go wrong will go wrong but that same principal applies to every team in the AFC West. The Kansas City Chiefs have perhaps the most talented roster in the division and I think they are built better than any of their divisional foes for the long-term.

With Manning and Rivers in the division, the Chiefs are likely to be underdogs in the eyes of most national outlets even into the season.

Still, it is refreshing to one writer at a major outlet actually taking the time to evaluate the rosters of the teams he is writing about and not just the hype.

Had Peyton Manning done the same, he might be in Kansas City right now instead of Denver.

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