Have you ever been sitting around on a Sunday after the Chiefs have pulled off yet another victory watching a game between the Lions and the Cardinals wondering who you should root for?
Then today’s you’re lucky day!
In this series we’ll go through the games each week and explain, from a Chiefs fan perspective, who you should and shouldn’t root for and which games are the most important.
But first the rules.
- The rankings and interests are based solely on which outcomes benefit the Chiefs the most. So while some may root for the Patriots to beat the Raiders because we hate the Raiders, from the Chiefs perspective it’s best for the Raiders to win and make it easier for the Chiefs to get the top seed.
- NFC vs. NFC matchups won’t be ranked. The only way they impact the Chiefs is if we get down to the 4th tiebreaker for playoff seeding (meaning head-to-head, win-loss record in conference games, and win-loss record in common games are all tied). in which case they factor into strength of victory and strength of schedule. Not only is this unlikely to be relevant, but even if it is we already know to root for NFC North teams (since that’s who we play this year).
- The Chiefs game won’t be ranked because, duh, we root for the Chiefs to win and it will always be our most important game.
1: Colts over Chargers
For the early weeks whoever plays the Chargers will always have the top spot. Winning the division is the most important goal and with the Chargers likely being one of the top teams in the AFC, we could see a situation like last year where the winner of the AFC West is the top seed while the loser has to play in the wildcard round despite having a similar record.
Unfortunately this week the Colts don’t seem likely to put up much resistance. With the sudden retirement of Luck the Chargers are a vastly superior team and should win easily.
2: Titans over Browns
It’s amazing how quickly times change. The Browns went from a historically bad team to a serious contender in just a couple years. The Titans look to be good but not great like they’ve been the past couple years, so they don’t seem like much of a threat. We’d be best served by the Browns losing.
3: Saints over Texans
A general rule of thumb is that you always want the NFC team to beat the AFC team, so this one is an easy choice. With Luck retiring the Texans are favored to win the AFC South, so the Chiefs need to make sure to have a better record than them.
4: Steelers over Patriots
While this game will have a bigger impact than some of the ones above it, the problem is that both the Steelers and Patriots are threats to the Chiefs, so it’s difficult to know which one to root for. Whoever wins this game will have the inside track to a first round bye.
5: Bills over Jets
Now we’re getting to the games that most likely won’t matter at all. While I personally think the Bills will be better this year, the Jets have a much higher ceiling, so it’d be nice for their dreams to be crushed as early as possible.
6: Dolphins over Ravens
The Dolphins are in tank mode, and while Lamar Jackson will likely take the path most other run-first quarterbacks take and regress, the Ravens are still technically more of a threat and therefore we should root for the Dolphins.
7: Raiders over Broncos
The battle for the basement of the AFC West starts week one. I guess the Broncos are superior, so better for the Raiders to win.
8: Seahawks over Bengals
The Bengals are a complete non-threat, so their game gets the lowest ranking.