A possible AFC Championship preview is in the offing on Sunday night when the Bills invade Arrowhead Stadium to take on the reigning conference champion, Kansas City Chiefs. Let’s analyze this titanic showdown and keep cashing our NFL picks!
Buffalo Bills vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Sunday, October 10, 2021 – 08:20 PM EDT at Arrowhead Stadium
The Bills rolled to their third win of the young season last week after they blasted the visiting Houston Texans, 40-0, and held onto the top spot in the AFC East. Josh Allen connected on 20-of-30 passes for 248 yards with a pair of touchdowns and one interception. However, it was the defense that stole the spotlight in this contest, as the Bills D forced five turnovers and held the Texans’ offense to a total of 135 yards. It was a mismatch from start to finish.
“Whether they give it away on the 30-yard-line or the 1, we’ve got to go out and try to make a stop,” safety Micah Hyde said. “We got playmakers all over the field, so any time we can hold them to no points, it’s pretty awesome.”
Stefon Diggs once again proved to be Allen’s favorite target with seven receptions for 114 yards but it was tight end, Dawson Knox, who was the recipient of both of the touchdown passes.
Ironically, the Bills are tied for second with their adversaries on Sunday night in points scored (33.5) but it is their defense that has separated them from the other high-scoring teams in the league. Entering this game, the Bills are No. 1 in passing defense, allowing just 148.8 yards per game, and points allowed, surrendering only 11 points per contest. Buffalo’s run-stop unit is not too shabby either, currently permitting 68 yards per game which ranks them fourth in that category.
Chiefs Back on Track
Few would have believed that the Chiefs would have been 1-2 straight up after their first three weeks but unexpected losses to the vastly improved Ravens and Chargers made it so. However, last week Kansas City righted the ship with a 42-30 victory over the Eagles in the City of Brotherly Love.
Patrick Mahomes was immense, torching the Eagles for five touchdowns while his top target, Tyreek Hill, hauled in three of those five and racked up a whopping 186 receiving yards and caught 11 of the 12 balls thrown to him. Second-year tailback, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, broke the century mark in rushing while former LSU star, Darrell Williams, had the Chiefs’ only rushing touchdown, a one-yard plunge into the end zone in the third quarter.
The Chiefs’ offense is as prolific as ever under the command of Patrick Mahomes but it’s the defense that has struggled mightily at times this year. Kansas City is allowing nearly as many points as they score, 31.3, which has manifested in their .500 record at the quarter-pole of the season. They are ranked 27th against the pass (291.8 YPG) and 29th against the run (146.0 YPG).
Wanna Make a Bet?
At first blush, this feels like a game that should favor the Bills. If we read the stats and think about these two offenses being tied for second in the league, yet Buffalo’s offense being so far superior then the choice is clear, right?
But as we review the NFL odds a few days before kickoff, we can see that the Chiefs are three-point home favorites which essentially means these teams are even at a neutral site. I’m having a hard time seeing my way clear to that point of view as the KC defense should be ready for the taking by Josh Allen and his coterie of offensive weapons, mainly Stefon Diggs.
I am wary of this game because the Chiefs are so potent offensively but if the Bills’ game plan is to tie Tyreek Hill in knots and leave the short to medium passes to a one-on-one battle with Travis Kelce, it won’t stop KC from scoring but it will protract the process.
I won’t look a gift horse, or three points, in the mouth, which means I am backing the Bills in this one and so should you!
Free NFL Pick: Bills +3 (-115) at BetMGM