Ranking KC Chiefs’ potential opponents in Wild Card round
3. Miami Dolphins
Odds they meet: ~31%
Now we’re starting to get to the teams that will require the Chiefs to play a good game and have little room for error. The first team we’ll discuss is the Miami Dolphins. After the bye week, Miami is the most likely opponent for Kansas City in the first week of the playoffs. The most likely position for them is the seventh seed and the most probable position for Kansas City is the two seed. All the Dolphins need to clinch a playoff spot in Week 17 is a victory over the Patriots plus a Jets loss.
The main issue that Miami presents to Kansas City is its explosive passing game. They have the ammunition at wide receiver to put up a ton of points with old friend Tyreek Hill and second-year star Jaylen Waddle. The reasons that the Chiefs would want to play the Dolphins are their lackluster defense, limited quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (who’s currently dealing with another concussion) inexperienced head coach Mike McDaniel, and because they are relatively one-dimensional. In an ideal world, the Chiefs delay a potential game against them until the divisional round, but they should take care of business if they square off in a Wild Card Game.
2. Los Angeles Chargers
Odds they meet: ~13%
The Chargers are the final team on the list that the Chiefs have a realistic chance of facing in the first round. If they were to face off, it would most likely be as the #3/#6 combination, although #2/#7 is certainly possible, but unlikely.
The reasons that Los Angeles should scare Kansas City are pretty clear. First, they have a quarterback that can rival Mahomes on a good day in Justin Herbert. Second, they have weapons with Keenan Allen, Austin Ekeler, and Mike Williams to gash a mediocre Chiefs defense. Third, they have an aggressive head coach (even to a fault) on fourth downs. Finally, they have the defensive talent in their secondary and defensive line to give Kansas City fits on offense. Joey Bosa, Khalil Mack, and Derwin James are all game wreckers that the Chiefs need to be wary of. They’ve also given the Chiefs a serious fight every game in the Brandon Staley era.
On the brighter side, the Chargers have been very Jekyll and Hyde under Staley, so catching them on an off day would not be surprising. But overall, I would be very nervous if a Justin Herbert-led Los Angeles team came to Arrowhead for a playoff game.