AFC stock reports: Playoff shuffle, Week 12 upsets, MVP, and NFL Draft
The Kansas City Chiefs took a much-needed bye week during Week 12. What happened around the AFC while the team gets healthy and regroups?
As the Kansas City Chiefs finally receive their bye week, both the team and fans were in dire need of a break. Players needed time off to get healthy and refocused, while the fans need time to calm down and enjoy a week of football without the stress. In what was expected to be an explosive season in 2019 with the reigning MVP at quarterback and an improved defense, it’s been a rollercoaster of emotions for both sides of the ball.
Kansas City desperately needed this bye week more than usual. While it comes just in time for a playoff push down the stretch to gain momentum at the right time, the injuries have piled up high. The hardest thing to swallow about the Chiefs 2019 season thus far is the mental mistakes. Despite everything that has happened to this point, there is plenty of reasons to be optimistic, going into Week 13 at Arrowhead Stadium.
Head coach Andy Reid is 17-3 in games coming off of the bye week. Not only does it give him extra time to gameplan for the upcoming opponent, but it’s also an opportunity for him to look back at the season and see what needs to change going forward. This year, the Chiefs will host the Oakland Raiders in their first week back in action in Kansas City.
Stock reports were flying in the upward direction for Oakland this past week. Every radio station or article that you came across regarding the Raiders was a tribute to a turnaround season. Chiefs fans got a front-row seat while on the bye week to watch their division rival fall flat on their face as they lost to the New York Jets 34-3.
While both teams were warming up, Raiders fans flooded the stadium in New Jersey only to boo the Jets players. Coming off a two-game win streak, it’s not that the Jets needed motivation, but the Oakland fans gave them some. After going into the locker room before the game, New York came out ready to play dominantly, earning Raiders quarterback Derek Carr a spot on the bench.
Instead of playing for the division in Week 13, Oakland remains a game behind the Chiefs. If Kansas City can get back on track in Week 13 against the Raiders, it will not only push Oakland nearly out of reach in the AFC West but provide some momentum down the final stretch. Let’s take a look at what I saw around the AFC this week along with some draft thoughts moving forward.