Chiefs Playoffs Hopes: Key NFL Afternoon Games Affecting KC

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Nov 24, 2014; New Orleans, LA, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Justin Forsett (29) celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the New Orleans Saints during the second quarter of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports


The perfect scenario for the Chiefs today would be for a win over the Broncos, and losses by the Browns, Ravens, and Steelers. This situation would tie the Chiefs for the division lead plus give them a one game lead over the AFC North competitors. Yes, they’ll still have do deal with the Chargers – who would also be tied for the division lead – but the combination of their remaining schedule and the game at Arrowhead favors the Chiefs.

Obviously a loss to Denver tonight would put the Chiefs in a lot of trouble, but that trouble would be seriously diminished with losses from the AFC North teams. In addition to those losses, all of the AFC North teams still have at least one division game remaining on their schedule. Pittsburgh has two games agains the Bengals and the game against the Chiefs remaining, so they are probably the least of the Chiefs concerns of the three AFC North contenders.

Cleveland has the game against Buffalo today plus a matchups against the Colts, Bengals, and Ravens. There should at least be two losses in there so that’s good news for the Chiefs. The biggest concern for KC is that the Chiefs don’t get the chance to play the Browns and add an extra layer of protection with the potential loss and tie-breaker like they do with the Steelers.

The two most concerning teams have to be the Ravens and Bengals. Good news is one of them is likely to win the division so the Chiefs wouldn’t have to worry about both of them earning a wild card. Cincy could do a lot of damage in the Chiefs favor as they have two games against the Steelers, a game against the Browns, and a home game against the Broncos. It may be a good idea to become a Bengals supporter for the next five weeks.

Baltimore has a tougher road but a navigable one. They’ve got the Chargers today then they are at Miami, home to Jacksonville, at Houston, and finish the season at home against the Browns. Ravens wins don’t really help the Chiefs much because the Chiefs control their fates against the Dolphins and Chargers, and the Browns looked destined to finish 8-8 or 9-7 at best. If there is a team that passes the Chiefs it is probably the Ravens, so the more losses they can get – like today – the better it is for the Chiefs’ playoff hopes when it comes to the AFC North trio.