A dozen (or so) tasks the Chiefs must accomplish to knock off the Ravens

The Chiefs are playing in their sixth consecutive AFC Championship Game. If they're going to go back to the Super Bowl, here's what they need to do.

Jan 21, 2024; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15)
Jan 21, 2024; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) / Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports
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3. Limit the Ravens running game

Everyone who follows the NFL is aware that the Baltimore Ravens boast one of the most prolific rushing attacks in the NFL. They have a great blend of speed and power with Gus Edwards, Justice Hill, Dalvin Cook, and Lamar Jackson.

The one true flaw of the Chiefs' defense is that they're not great at stopping the run. Including both regular season and postseason games, Kansas City ranks 21st in rushing yards allowed per game and 27th in yards per carry. They surrendered at least 150 yards on the ground twice in the last month, something the Ravens have done a whopping eight times.

After Buffalo gashed them for 182 yards in the Divisional Round, Steve Spagnuolo needs to emphasize getting stops on early down rushes. To his credit, once the Chiefs started getting more aggressive on first down and second down, the Bills had less success running the ball.

Against a team that has as much success running the football as Baltimore, it's unrealistic to expect the Chiefs to shut them down in that area, but they could limit it. If they can stuff the Ravens on just a couple of first-down runs in key situations, that will give Spagnuolo some liberty to be creative against Lamar Jackson. If the Chiefs cannot limit Baltimore's rushing attack in any way, it's unlikely that they'll go back to the Super Bowl.