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The Kansas City Chiefs advanced to their second straight Super Bowl after decidedly beating the Buffalo Bills 38-24 in the AFC Championship Game. Kansas City is looking to become the first team to repeat as Super Bowl Champions since the 2004 Patriots.
We will cover the Super Bowl LV matchup between the Chiefs and Buccaneers next week, but let’s take a look back on how the Chiefs got here.
No Super Bowl Hangover
While teams usually regress in the year following their Super Bowl win, the Chiefs kept the pedal to the metal, on the way to a 14-2 regular season record. Their second loss came in Week 17 when they were resting starters, with a bye locked up.
It often didn’t seem like the Chiefs were even trying, toying with teams and keeping games close, just to score at will when it mattered. Patrick Mahomes continues to prove he is the most talented quarterback in the NFL, completing 66% of his passes for 4,740 yards, 38 touchdowns, and six interceptions.
The passing attack flows through Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill. Kelce led the team with 105 yards, 1,416 yards, and 11 touchdowns, while Hill had him beat in the scoring department, with 15.
The Chiefs averaged nearly 30 points per game on the year while holding the opposition to 22.5.
Holding Strong Without Mahomes Against Browns
A scare came for Kansas City in their first playoff game against the Cleveland Browns. Midway through the third quarter, up 19-10, Mahomes took a scary hit to the head/neck injury and got up wobbling. His day ended as Mahomes was moved into concussion protocol, with journeyman Chad Henne handling duties for the rest of the game.
The Chiefs got a field goal on that possession, and while they let up one touchdown to Cleveland in the fourth quarter, the team held strong.
The defining moment of the game was a 3rd and 14 with two minutes left. Henne scrambled left and picked up 13 yards, and while it looked like the Chiefs would punt the ball back to the Browns, they elected to go for it on fourth down, converting a short pass to Tyreek, ending the game.
Mahomes was cleared in advance of the AFC Championship Game.
Beatdown on Buffalo
Buffalo was the unanimous second-best team in the AFC this year, with some considering them more explosive than Kansas City. However, when they met in the AFC Championship Game, the Chiefs validated they did have a “switch” they could turn on if need be.
Kansas City hadn’t covered a spread since November 1 but came out and beat the Bills by two scores. The game wasn’t nearly as close as the 38-24 score suggests.
The Bills went into the second quarter up 9-0 thanks to a muffed punt at the one-yard line that helped them score. Shaking off the bad play, Kansas City poured on 21 second quarter points thanks to big plays from Mecole Hardman, Tyreek Hill, and Travis Kelce.
The game would never be close from there, with a final score of 38-24. Hill and Kelce continued to get open, and Mahomes look unencumbered by his head/neck injury and turf toe.
The Chiefs are 1-1 ATS this postseason, and the over/unders are 1-1 in their two games.
Kansas City is currently 3.5-point favorites in the Super Bowl, with an over/under set at 56.5 points.