Broncos vs. KC Chiefs: Writers’ predictions for Week 16
By Scott Loring
The Kansas City Chiefs host the Denver Broncos in a game that the Chiefs need in order to sustain hope for the #1 seed in the AFC playoff race.
The Kansas City Chiefs host the Denver Broncos at noon Sunday in a game that the Chiefs need in order to sustain hope for the #1 seed in the AFC playoff race. If the Chiefs (12-3) beat the Broncos and Raiders in their final two games and the Bills (12-3, but hold the tiebreaker over the Chiefs) lose either of their last two games, the Chiefs will be the 1-seed. That will secure a bye week and home field throughout the playoffs for the Chiefs, and will more than likely guarantee that the Chiefs would not have to play both the Bengals and Bills in order to get to the Super Bowl. In other words, the Chiefs have a lot to play for.
Charles Robinson had the closest guess with his 27-17 prediction against the Seahawks. Here’s the rundown of the Arrowhead Addict staff picks for this weekend’s tilt against the rival Broncos:
Patrick Allen (11-4)
One word of caution for Chiefs fans. The Broncos fired head coach Nathaniel Hackett this week so the Chiefs should be ready for anything as interim coach Jerry Rosburg takes over. Still, the Chiefs are so much better than the Broncos that a trick play or two shouldn’t make much of a difference. I think the Chiefs continue to play more focused ball as they tune up for the playoffs. Look for Patrick Mahomes to make his closing argument for the NFL MVP in this one as he throws four touchdown passes.
Chiefs 31, Broncos 17
Adam Best (9-3)
This is peak geekdom, but the last time the Chiefs lost to the Broncos, Benedict Cumberbatch was not yet Doctor Strange. He’s since played the character in six Marvel movies. A lot of time has passed, and given that pathetic Christmas Day performance against a broken-down Rams team, a lot more time will pass before the Donkeys get their next dub over KC.
Chiefs 45, Broncos 9
Matt Conner (11-4)
The Broncos have been gutted and the carcass is just waiting for the season to end. The Chiefs know they have to win out to have a shot at the first-round bye and the potential prize is too great to let off the gas. Make it 15 straight.
Chiefs 31, Broncos 16
Scott Loring (10-5)
The Chiefs typically defer whenever they win the coin flip, but I think if they have the opportunity to take the ball first, they should. Taking the ball and going up 7-0 on their opening possession would quickly demoralize the Broncos, who are fully aware of how terrible they are. I predict the Chiefs lean heavily on the pass in this game, as they help make Patrick Mahomes’ case for the MVP and try to keep Isiah Pacheco and Jerick McKinnon fresh and healthy for January.
Chiefs 34, Broncos 14
Ellen Mathis (13-2)
The Broncos are back in town and facing an uncertain future being tethered to an aging quarterback and firing first year head coach Nathaniel Hackett. They are, quite simply, a mess and will be for the foreseeable future which brings me much joy. The Chiefs need to win out and hope the Bills drop a game to get the one seed but will need to balance that against potential injuries. I predict they jump out to an early lead, turn conservative and let some of the young guys field the majority of the snaps. This game ends closer than it should but understandably so – better to be healthy than blow out the Broncos.
Chiefs 30, Broncos 24
Jacob Milham (12-3)
I was happy to hear that Andy Reid is still very focused on the Broncos as an opponent, despite their flailing coaching staff. Any given Sunday, right? I am excited to see how the Broncos players carry themselves against the Chiefs though, especially after their vaunted defense got demolished by the lowly Rams. The Rams just capitalized on the Broncos mistakes though. I hope that the Chiefs defense can force at least two takeaways. Either way though, the Chiefs should roll through the Broncos in Kansas City.
Chiefs 31, Broncos 17
Charles Robinson (13-2)
The Denver Broncos. That’s it, that’s the joke.
Arguably the biggest dumpster fire in the league, Denver’s only hope is to have some interim head coach voodoo magic working in their favor which could burn the Chiefs, but in all reality KC should cruise to a victory at home on New Year’s Day in their effort to keep pace in the arms race for the AFC’s 1 seed.
Chiefs 35, Broncos 18
Stacy Smith (3-1)
The Denver Broncos are a bit of a tire fire heading into Week 18. With a few coaching departures, they may prove to be a tough out again in the rematch with the Kansas City Chiefs. In-season change has a way of rallying the troops, but I don’t expect the Broncos to have the consistency necessary to pull off the upset. Russell Wilson was a disaster in last week’s matchup with the Los Angeles Rams. He threw three picks and completed less than 55% of his passes. The Chiefs defense will want to build on a solid effort last week. I suspect they’ll force a turnover again this week and keep Denver out of sync offensively.
Chiefs 27, Broncos 20
Lucas Strozinsky (12-3)
The Chiefs have no business losing this game. There may be a jolt of energy from Denver due to the coaching change, but I think this team is down, dead, and out. Kansas City takes care of business and hopes Cincinnati takes out Buffalo on Monday Night.
Chiefs 31, Broncos 13
Grant Tuttle (12-2)
Broncos country wants this ride to end. While I’m sure that some fans have talked themselves into believing that Hackett was the biggest problem, the Broncos should pack it in. They haven’t beaten the Chiefs since David Letterman was still on television. It’s not going to happen this time, but they could play inspired football under new leadership.
Chiefs 38 Broncos 24