KC Chiefs vs. Browns: Underrated storylines heading into Week 1

FOXBOROUGH, MA - JANUARY 03: Chase McLaughlin #3 of the New York Jets celebrates a PAT against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on January 3, 2021 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)
FOXBOROUGH, MA - JANUARY 03: Chase McLaughlin #3 of the New York Jets celebrates a PAT against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on January 3, 2021 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images) /
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ATLANTA, GEORGIA – AUGUST 29: Baker Mayfield #6 of the Cleveland Browns looks to pass against the Atlanta Falcons during the first half at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on August 29, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GEORGIA – AUGUST 29: Baker Mayfield #6 of the Cleveland Browns looks to pass against the Atlanta Falcons during the first half at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on August 29, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

As the K.C. Chiefs prepare to host their first game of the year, there are some obvious storylines at play for a home team ready to make a third consecutive trip to the Super Bowl. The same can also be said for a visiting Cleveland Browns team ready to serve notice after a busy offseason that they’re legitimate contenders.

The NFL is back for Week 1 with the start of the regular season on Thursday night and continuing through the big matchups over the weekend, of which the Browns vs. Chiefs is definitely one of the biggest. That means the spotlight is on both Cleveland and K.C. for reasons that we’re likely to hear over and over again as the major storylines.

For the Browns, the Week 1 game at Arrowhead Stadium has been an offseason focus ever since the NFL revealed the regular season schedule. The Chiefs were the postseason roadblock for Baker Mayfield and company last year and any team who wants to reach Super Bowl glory is going to have to go through K.C. in the AFC.

A look at some underrated storylines for Browns vs. KC Chiefs.

Beyond that, the Browns are going to be hungry to show they are real contenders after overhauling the defense this offseason—thanks to additions like John Johnson III, Jadeveon Clowney and others—as well as the return to health of wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. from injury.

As for the Chiefs, the focus is always on the team’s overpowering offense and this year that will be especially true as a completely rebuilt offensive line comes together in front of Patrick Mahomes. Can the Chiefs put the Browns away again when they’re so motivated? Is this line going to be good enough to put K.C. over the top?

These are the plot subjects we’ll hear all week, but what about some underrated storylines? In the interest of serving the conversation about this game a bit more, we thought it’d be worth looking at some other stories likely to impact the final score next Sunday that might not see as much time in the spotlight.