Chiefs Playoff Picture Week 14 – Clinched Playoff Berth Edition

 92 replies

That’s right, the Chiefs clinched a playoff berth this week. With 11 wins, the worst record we can have is 11-5, while the first teams out all have 6 losses, so they can’t finish better than 10-6. Therefore, we’ll be playing in the postseason.

But that’s not what everybody cares about. We want a first round bye and the top seed. In that regard the Chiefs had a very good week.

Clinching the Division

Boy are the Chargers annoying. With a win over the Bengals they now have the second best record in the AFC. But it turns out that, for this week at least, that game didn’t matter.

Our magic number in the division is 2 (magic number is our wins plus chargers losses needed to clinch the division). If the Chargers had lost it would have been 1. Either way, a win Thursday clinches the division, while a loss continues the division race.

As I described last week, we have the tiebreaker no matter what, so a loss Thursday means we still have the division lead. As long as we have the same record as the Chargers or better in the last two games we win the division even with the loss.

Our last two games are at Seattle and at home against Oakland, while the Chargers have the Ravens at home and then Denver on the road. This is very favorable for us. Seattle on the road will be tough, but a home game against the Raiders is about as much of a sure thing as you’re going to get.

With it being very unlikely that we’ll go 0-2, the Chargers need to win out to have a realistic chance at winning the division. That would be a win at Arrowhead on a short week, a win against the Ravens at home, and a win at Denver. That would be an incredible 3-game stretch.

Overall, the Chargers do have a path to winning the division, but it’s incredibly narrow.

1st Seed and 1st Round Bye

Thank you Indianapolis and Miami. Because of them if we win Thursday we get a 1st round bye.

Just like last week the Patriots have, and will have, the tiebreaker over us, but now they need to make up 2 games in the last 3 weeks to catch us. So if we go 1-2, they need to go 3-0. This is not too hard to imagine, we have two tough games and if they can win in Pittsburgh they have home games against the Jets and Bills to finish out the season, but it’s still pretty unlikely. If they lose to Pittsburgh, or we beat either Seattle or LA, then it’s pretty much over with that game against Oakland on our schedule.

With that in mind, if we win Thursday and the Steelers beat the Patriots, we will clinch our spot over them and the 1st seed.

While the Patriots will remain in the hunt as long as they win or we lose, the Texans can’t pass us if we win this week, and even if we lose they are an extreme long shot.

There are two potential tiebreakers here, conference record and strength of victory. Conference record comes first and is more likely to favor us, and after this week it’s now very unlikely that it will go to strength of victory. Here’s why.

Like the Patriots, they need to make up 2 games to go to a tiebreaker. That means to tie they need a combination of either:

  • Texans go 2-1 and Chiefs go 0-3, or
  • Texans go 3-0 and Chiefs go 1-2

Then once they get the tie they need to tie the conference record. Since we have 2 more conference wins than them, and we both have 1 NFC game left, both of those bullets only go the Texans’ way if all 6 games go just he right way.

For the first one, that Texans loss would have to be against the Eagles. If they beat the Eagles but lose one of their AFC games to get to that 2-1 record, They won’t have enough conference wins for the tiebreaker.

For the second one, our win would have to be against Seattle. If that one win was an AFC team we would again have more conference wins and have the tiebreaker.

Putting that all together, the Texans have 3 specific paths to jumping us:

  • Texans go 3-0 and Chiefs go 0-3, or
  • Texans go 2-1 with the loss being against Philadelphia and Chiefs go 0-3, or
  • Texans go 3-0 and Chiefs go 1-2 with the win being against Seattle

This is much more unlikely than it seams on the surface. There are 720 possible outcomes for those final 6 games. Of those, only 3 end with the Texans jumping the Chiefs in the standings. If every game was 50/50, that would be a 1/240 chance.

But it’s even more likely than that. For one, the games aren’t 50/50, and our home game against the Raiders is highly likely to be a win. Notice that in all 3 of those scenarios the Texans need the Chiefs to lose to the Raiders.

And secondly, even if they do end up getting past the conference record tiebreaker, we still have a shot at winning the strength of victory. Not a high one, but it adds yet another hurdle they need to clear.

To put it short, it’s hard to imagine a scenario where we both win the division and lose to the Texans in the standings. At this point I wouldn’t even be worried about them until they get closer to some of these scenarios actually happening.

But notice how none of those 3 scenarios involve a Chiefs win over LA. Because the Chargers are an AFC team, and the Texans have no AFC games to give to pass us, that means a win Thursday eliminates them from passing us. And since it also eliminates the Chargers, the worst seed we could have is the 2nd.

Summary

  • Chiefs clinch a playoff spot.
  • Chiefs clinch the division and a first round bye with a win Thursday, but even with a loss have a good chance at doing both.
  • Chiefs clinch 1st seed with win Thursday plus Patriots loss.
  • The Patriots have a chance to pass us, but it’s not very likely.
  • The Texans are essentially not a concern anymore. They almost certainly won’t pass us, and if they do we’ve likely lost the division anyway.
  • All together it’s highly unlikely we get a seed other than 1st or 5th.
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TheBasedProphetKC
TheBasedProphetKC
12/11/2018 9:38 am

Ive been lurking but this is my first comment. Just wanted to say thank you to the creators and contributors for this site. Tired of the garbage of Adolf Sweeney at Arrowheadreich. That site went downhill so fast and it’s good to see a place Chiefs fans can have FUN discussing their team.

severn58
severn58
12/10/2018 5:33 pm

Anyone else shitting their britches over Butker? I can’t lie, I freak out now every time he’s lining up.

Spider
Spider
Reply to  severn58
12/10/2018 5:39 pm

I’m there too. He seems to be in a bit of a slump and he needs to get that sorted out yesterday.

OTOH, I was always nervous when Santos was kicking and he has the franchise accuracy record…and we’ve had decent or better kickers over the years.

severn58
severn58
Reply to  Spider
12/10/2018 5:45 pm

I just think kicking’s sooooo mental, and once you’ve got the yips it’s a wrap. This fucking kid.

Tarkus
Reply to  severn58
12/10/2018 5:43 pm

I was shitting my britches when Andy was going all conservative at the end of the game, instead of trying to at least get closer for an easier FG attempt.

In Butker’s defense, though, that was a terrible snap. Colquitt did a good job with the hold, but it may have thrown off the timing a hair.

severn58
severn58
Reply to  Tarkus
12/10/2018 5:48 pm

I said the same shit, put the ball in the Wunderkind’s hands and let him do his thing. I’ve got to wonder if Harrison’s performance lately will change how Andy goes about those kinds of situations moving forward.

Ransom_
Ransom_
Reply to  severn58
12/10/2018 6:19 pm

I’m the same. He’s missed enough here lately to question him. Yeah, “bad snap”, whatever. It happens. Was the first miss a bad snap too? Colquitt always does a good job getting them lined up. And the one he finally made to “win it” (not really, cuz we still needed a defensive stop) still hit the upright, IIRC.

Tarkus
Reply to  Ransom_
12/10/2018 7:22 pm

The first miss was over 50 yards. I don’t know if it was a bad snap or not (didn’t notice), but the last two (including the make) were both bad snaps. Don’t know what’s up with Winchester.

Anthony Stratton
Reply to  severn58
12/10/2018 6:14 pm

Meh, honestly I’m not concerned. When was the last time a missed Butker kick cost us a game? And he’s had quite a few. If anything, it just means we should throw the ball on 4th down…every time.

Mitko
Reply to  Anthony Stratton
12/10/2018 6:31 pm

Playoffs last year

Anthony Stratton
Reply to  Mitko
12/10/2018 6:43 pm

Ok…maybe I need to spell it out…I meant this year…with Mahomes.

Mitko
Reply to  Anthony Stratton
12/10/2018 8:25 pm

Mahomes was on the team last year ? and technically it was 2018

Mitko
Reply to  severn58
12/10/2018 6:30 pm

Those kicks yesterday were ugly low line drives. I’m wondering if he’s sick or hurt

tecmo_sb35
tecmo_sb35
Reply to  Mitko
12/10/2018 6:57 pm

I wondered if the turf was affecting his footing too.

Mitko
12/10/2018 4:33 pm

Ok so what about this scenario: KC wins against SEA, but takes Ls against LAC & OAK. LAC wins against KC and DEN, but loses to BAL. Who takes the Division? The ESPN simulator says LA, but I believe KC wins due to common opponent.

Anthony Stratton
Reply to  Mitko
12/10/2018 4:58 pm

Thanks for breakfast yesterday! Was fortuitous to walk past your tailgate.

Mitko
Reply to  Anthony Stratton
12/10/2018 6:28 pm

That it was! Nice to see ya again

Anthony Stratton
Reply to  Mitko
12/10/2018 6:44 pm

Hells yeah! I was just like, oh hey, its one of my internet friends!!!

BuckeyeMike
BuckeyeMike
Reply to  Mitko
12/10/2018 5:25 pm

Just win baby

01lowbird
12/10/2018 2:52 pm

Charger week!!!comment image

KC Dude (A.K.A Zif)
Reply to  01lowbird
12/10/2018 3:07 pm

Getting ready to write my fan prep guide for the Dolts. If we can get every super fan to follow the steps I outline it is a guaranteed win.

Super Ultimate Regular Guy
Super Ultimate Regular Guy
12/10/2018 1:47 pm

Hey thanks for this WUSTL. I hope you’re well today. To everyone here, I hope everyone here is doing well. More than anything I guess, this is my first ever post, with more to come hopefully. I can’t tell you all how much I’ve learned just reading all of your comments on the site that some of you all may have frequented before starting this one. I’d love to share a beer with any of you Thursday night if you’ll be at Arrowhead; or any time for that matter. I’m pretty sure I’ll be with the folks right next to the guy who (apparently notoriously?) plays all of the music really loud from his vehicle on the North side of Arrowhead. (That was vague; there’s probably lots of folks who do that.)

Also, I think “tat2tony21” tailgates there near lot N back on the North side up by the grass. (????) I hope he’ll see this.

Anyway, I’m barely computer literate and still figuring out how to navigate around this site and apparently around the parking lot at Arrowhead.

Much love to all of you fellow Chiefs fans and it’s cool to be here. Thanks for having me.

KC Dude (A.K.A Zif)
Reply to  Super Ultimate Regular Guy
12/10/2018 3:09 pm

Hope you enjoy this site as much as I do.

Anthony Stratton
Reply to  Super Ultimate Regular Guy
12/10/2018 4:19 pm

Yup, saw your comment in the other thread. Thats real close to my old stomping grounds.

We called that guy DJ DickNuts btw.

Fire_FG_the_moron
Fire_FG_the_moron
12/10/2018 1:38 pm

Shall we take wagers……nvm. I need to email Tony. Got an article to write.

Anthony Stratton
Reply to  Fire_FG_the_moron
12/10/2018 2:20 pm

I’ll keep an eye out for it.

electriclight
electriclight
12/10/2018 1:24 pm

Every sports commentator in America will be pulling for the Chargers come Thursday.
Too bad.

Fire_FG_the_moron
Fire_FG_the_moron
Reply to  electriclight
12/10/2018 1:29 pm

Goodell and refs included. Im preparing for a NY SCREW JOB.

Chiefsfan115
Chiefsfan115
Reply to  Fire_FG_the_moron
12/10/2018 1:36 pm

10 penalties on the Chiefs in the first quarter. Mahomes will have to convert five 3rd and 20s to win the game after Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill are ejected for taunting.

Jimi336
Jimi336
Reply to  Chiefsfan115
12/10/2018 2:03 pm

Chiefs had half as many penalties as the Ravens yesterday. Something they needed to clean up and did. Or maybe because they were playing at home.

ChiefsF8hful
ChiefsF8hful
Reply to  Jimi336
12/10/2018 2:55 pm

Combination of both?

vvet818
Reply to  electriclight
12/10/2018 1:35 pm

Let em, who gives a

Spoiler
shit
!

KCChef
KCChef
12/10/2018 12:59 pm

Things we learned Earlier in the Year : The Chiefs “D” can be Shredded by a “Hurry Up ” Offense early in the Game …

Things We Learned Yesterday : The Chiefs’ “D” can be Shredded by a concerted Running Attack Up the Gut …

God Help Us if a team Ever Puts these Two Together ‘Cuz I have Very Little Faith in Our Ability to Adapt-n- React @ the DC Level …

BuckeyeMike
BuckeyeMike
Reply to  KCChef
12/10/2018 1:17 pm

ERIC BERRY our savior please

Daniel Harms
Reply to  KCChef
12/10/2018 2:29 pm

Things we’ve learned in multiple games: Although this defense is bad, they are opportunistic and create turnovers via the pass rush. That can be the difference in the playoffs

Spineshanked
Spineshanked
Reply to  Daniel Harms
12/10/2018 3:47 pm

The defense is awful, but in basically every game they’ve made a timely stop or turnover happen. Mahomes had 2 opportunities to win the Rams game at the end, one was because the defense made a huge stop with less than a minute.

Anthony Stratton
Reply to  Spineshanked
12/10/2018 4:19 pm

Check the standings…11-2

#dcwinz

Spider
Spider
Reply to  Daniel Harms
12/10/2018 4:24 pm

If we could get the DBs to actually catch those picks, there’d be less reason for concern. The opportunities have certainly been there.

ws76
ws76
12/10/2018 12:55 pm

Great write up. Thanks for saving me the headache of looking it up myself.

zulu trader
zulu trader
12/10/2018 12:28 pm

my head is spinning … Gif, anyone?

blooptaabi
blooptaabi
Reply to  zulu trader
12/10/2018 12:40 pm

Let me try this
comment image

ChiefsF8hful
ChiefsF8hful
Reply to  zulu trader
12/10/2018 2:08 pm

comment image

Tarkus
Reply to  zulu trader
12/10/2018 4:26 pm

comment image

KCChef
KCChef
12/10/2018 12:03 pm

So Can we now safely send Our McKensie to the PS w/o fear he’ll get “Picked Off ” by the Raiders ? … Seems we’ve wasted a Year Long Roster Spot w/ this Project being “In the Bigs” ,But, Not Active … …

ForeverRanger91
ForeverRanger91
Reply to  KCChef
12/10/2018 12:21 pm

LDT was also on the 53 his rookie year.

KCChef
KCChef
Reply to  ForeverRanger91
12/10/2018 12:31 pm

Good Point … I hope it Translates …

Tarkus
Reply to  KCChef
12/10/2018 4:27 pm

We have 7 inactives every game, and would even if McKenzie was on the PS.

Patomic Fist
12/10/2018 11:55 am

Never mind…..I read first round bye and was thinking #1 seed. Carry on.

Chiefsfan115
Chiefsfan115
Reply to  Patomic Fist
12/10/2018 12:01 pm

The Chiefs win Thursday guarantees the Chiefs will be the one or two seed, correct? How can the Texans catch the Chiefs if the Chiefs are 12 and 4?

KC Dude (A.K.A Zif)
Reply to  Chiefsfan115
12/10/2018 12:19 pm

Correct. That would put us at 12 – 2 Chargers would be 10 – 4 with no hope for anything higher than a 5th seed. The Patriots are sitting at 9 – 4 with the tiebreaker if it comes down to both the Chiefs and Patriots coming in at 12 – 4. Winning any 2 of the next 3 means #1 seed for us.

Patomic Fist
Reply to  Chiefsfan115
12/10/2018 1:47 pm

Yes, win Thursday clinches 1st round bye….but it does not clinch #1 seed.

KC Dude (A.K.A Zif)
12/10/2018 11:42 am

Couple of things…

Any news regarding who did/did not practice today, if they are practicing today?

How will the McKenzie firing effect the Raiders game?

marsch77
marsch77
Reply to  KC Dude (A.K.A Zif)
12/10/2018 11:53 am

Fired? I saw there were changes in the scouting department, not that McKenzie was fired! Wow, there goes any chance that Gruden would luck into 1st round talent.

Dave B.
dave9600
Reply to  marsch77
12/10/2018 2:04 pm

They gave him until the end of the year. He told them to fuck off. He’s gone.

Ransom_
Ransom_
Reply to  KC Dude (A.K.A Zif)
12/10/2018 1:16 pm

Do they even really practice this week? It’s probably just walk throughs.

ArmChairQB
ArmChairQB
12/10/2018 11:42 am

We win next two and we are playing back ups in the final home game right?

A Lunar Ting
Reply to  ArmChairQB
12/10/2018 11:42 am

Very likely with Reid’s history in such situations

Chiefsfan115
Chiefsfan115
Reply to  A Lunar Ting
12/10/2018 11:58 am

And Andy Reid’s teams lose more than they win resting Week 17. Something like 15 of the last 18 Super Bowl Winners (that is the goal, right?) have played starters Week 17. I think Mahomes should play against Oakland. He will have plenty of time to rest postseason with 2 byes.

Chiefsfan115
Chiefsfan115
Reply to  Chiefsfan115
12/10/2018 12:36 pm

To emphasize my point, the last SB Winning QB to not play Week 17 was Drew Brees 9 seasons ago

ArmChairQB
ArmChairQB
Reply to  Chiefsfan115
12/10/2018 1:52 pm

Yeah, I am not the hugest fan of not playing the guys who got us there. I just don’t think I would start Mahomes .. not against the Raiders on the last game of the season.

Chiefsfan115
Chiefsfan115
Reply to  ArmChairQB
12/10/2018 1:57 pm

The last 3 QBs who didn’t play the last game and won the Super Bowl
Drew Brees SB44
B Johnson SB37
Ken Stabler SB11

Chiefsfan115
Chiefsfan115
Reply to  Chiefsfan115
12/10/2018 2:16 pm

Bart Starr also rested the last week of the Season before the first Super Bowl. That’s it. Only 4x a quarterback has rested the last week and won the Super Bowl.

Mink Farmer
Mink Farmer
Reply to  Chiefsfan115
12/10/2018 2:28 pm

Arrested?

Patomic Fist
Reply to  Chiefsfan115
12/10/2018 2:24 pm

That matches my perception that Belichick never rested Brady even if they had the opportunity….doesn’t mean he played the entire game but Brady has so rarely come out of games his entire career.

Spider
Spider
Reply to  ArmChairQB
12/10/2018 4:27 pm

Will we finally get a glimpse of McKenzie?

Spider
Spider
Reply to  ArmChairQB
12/10/2018 4:29 pm

Play them for a half.

John Doerty
John Doerty
Reply to  Tony Sommer
12/10/2018 11:45 am

I guess Chucky wanted to be the one drafting all of these 1st rounders. Wonder if they will higher a figurehead or just give the title to him.

ChiefOfTheWolfpack
ChiefOfTheWolfpack
Reply to  Tony Sommer
12/10/2018 11:45 am

Fuck! Now we can’t laugh at him when his son pancakes a Raiders defender for a touchdown run

marsch77
marsch77
Reply to  ChiefOfTheWolfpack
12/10/2018 11:53 am

The hell we can’t!

Pelletman
Pelletman
Reply to  Tony Sommer
12/10/2018 11:52 am

To be fair, the Raiders were 38-70 with McKenzie as GM and only had 1 winning season…and that was an extraordinarily lucky season of winning flips.

tecmo_sb35
tecmo_sb35
Reply to  Tony Sommer
12/10/2018 6:53 pm

It couldn’t happen to a better team. Can Chucky coach the Donks too?

John Doerty
John Doerty
12/10/2018 11:38 am

Here’s hoping health favors us on Thursday. A lot of dings yesterday. Any word on Cam at all? Andy just said it was a knee. No idea whether is was a stinger or a disaster. A good sign that neither Hill or Ware is long term given that they played after their injuries, but Hill at least was obviously hobbled. Still, a good sign for those two. I guess we’ll get EB back this week. Could be yuge.

A Lunar Ting
12/10/2018 11:28 am

It’s worth noting that with the NFC being a trainwreck, Seattle would next to clinch with a victory over the Vikings today.

A Lunar Ting
Reply to  A Lunar Ting
12/10/2018 11:29 am

Much less pressure/desperation on their end if they pick up the Minny game.

BuckeyeMike
BuckeyeMike
12/10/2018 11:26 am

I think we win Thursday, lose at Seattle, and win against Oakland.

ChiefOfTheWolfpack
ChiefOfTheWolfpack
Reply to  BuckeyeMike
12/10/2018 11:48 am

I can see that. Seattle is tough to play at and their game will be meaningful. Also, there’s a decent chance the Steelers can beat NE and we go into Seattle with everything locked down.

BuckeyeMike
BuckeyeMike
Reply to  ChiefOfTheWolfpack
12/10/2018 1:17 pm

Would be the best case scenario for sure.

Spider
Spider
Reply to  ChiefOfTheWolfpack
12/10/2018 4:31 pm

Pats aren’t dropping two in a row.

Tarkus
Reply to  ChiefOfTheWolfpack
12/10/2018 4:37 pm

Steelers aren’t dropping four in a row.

KC Dude (A.K.A Zif)
12/10/2018 11:25 am

Here’s to hoping we just win our next 6 games.

RDD India
RDD India
Reply to  KC Dude (A.K.A Zif)
12/10/2018 11:28 am

We will… it’s all the way baby!

RDD India
RDD India
12/10/2018 11:21 am

comment image?ssl=1

RDD India
RDD India
Reply to  RDD India
12/10/2018 11:27 am

Calling it right here—
Thats right…we gonnna hound and pound ! We clinch division and home field next thursday!

HawaiiFiveOh
HawaiiFiveOh
Reply to  RDD India
12/10/2018 12:24 pm

I think it’s going to be close. Too many wild cards involved. Thursday night, division game, injuries, two hot teams. No way would I offer a score prediction on this one.

reid_option
reid_option
Reply to  RDD India
12/10/2018 12:36 pm

One of my favorite gifs ever. Was this right after The Phumble?

Ransom_
Ransom_
Reply to  reid_option
12/10/2018 1:15 pm

I believe so. The Halloween game. 2011.

ChiefHound29
ChiefHound29
Reply to  RDD India
12/10/2018 1:26 pm

Phyllis melts down under pressure. If Gordon is hobbled then it plays to our strength, plus with EB supposedly playing this week, we get back a guy that can catch a ball in the secondary.

TRChiefFan
TRChiefFan
Reply to  ChiefHound29
12/11/2018 8:03 am

Explain how there are 720 possibilities with 6 games among Chiefs and Texans ??

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