The Road To Glory: Part V

Kansas City Chiefs 30, Las Vegas Raiders 29

Photo courtesy of Yahoo

October 9th, 2022:

4. Las Vegas Raiders (+7) at Kansas City Chiefs

This is going to seem so obvious in retrospect, but let’s consider the spot the Chiefs are in. They just played their game of the year — an impressive 41-31 win — against a Buccaneers team that deserved payback for what they did to Kansas City in Super Bowl 55. And next week the Chiefs play the Buffalo Bills, otherwise known as this year’s Super Bowl favorite.

Wedged in between is a Monday Night Football game against the lowly 1-3 Raiders, a team that probably doesn’t require Kansas City’s A-game to be victorious. I am not going to like any second of this matchup, mainly factoring in that Las Vegas haven’t looked very good up to this point and they are probably dead if they lose. But somehow I think the Chiefs find a way to come out of it with a win.

Score prediction: Chiefs 30, Raiders 27

Chiefs 30, Raiders 29 will be remembered for two things. The first is the embarrassing roughing the passer penalty Chris Jones was called for when he literally snatched the ball away from Derek Carr on his way to politely escorting the Raiders quarterback to the ground. The second is that Travis Kelce set a career high with four touchdown catches, which accounted for every Chiefs TD on the night.

I don’t have a lot to say about the win that hasn’t already been said. Obviously the call on Jones was horseshit, no doubt leading to some makeup calls that benefited Kansas City in the second half. And of course Travis Kelce is a legend.

But the Chiefs were losing 17-0. They don’t do that against teams that they take seriously. Yeah the Raiders were 1-3 going into the game, yeah this is supposed to be a “rivalry” and all that, and yeah you want your football team to give a shit about divisional opponents no matter what.

That’s not what the Chiefs do, though. It’s not their style. The games they care about are the games that the NFL markets around. I’m talking about the Buccaneers on Sunday Night Football. And yes, I’m talking about next week’s game against the Bills. Playing Tom Brady gets the Chiefs excited. Playing Josh Allen gets the Chiefs excited.

But the Raiders? Come on. Las Vegas had every right to win this matchup and they probably should have. I honestly believe that if Chris Jones wasn’t wrongly flagged that Kansas City would have been more than happy taking a 27-17 loss — or some shit — and dedicating their focus to Buffalo next week. As it turned out, the erroneous penalty pissed off Andy Reid, and thus the team responded.

Next week’s game is going to be more fun. Check this shit out: the Chiefs have been home underdogs only three times since 2014. The most recent was January 3rd, 2021, when the club was 14-1 and rested all their starters against the Chargers in Week 17. The other two came in Kansas City’s Super Bowl season in 2019 — a 26-23 win against the Vikings and a 31-24 loss to the Packers — when Mahomes was out with a dislocated knee. That’s the fucking list.

In other words, next Sunday’s matchup will be the first time in Patrick Mahomes’s career when he will be on his home field, starting, that his team isn’t favored to win the game. Crazy.

I’ll be going into it with the expectation of losing — I mean, after all the Bills are 3-point favorites — but I think it’s fair to say that they will not be coming out as slowly as they did against the Raiders. Should the Chiefs fall to a 17-0 deficit, they won’t beat Buffalo.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s