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2019 AFC Championship Playoff

(John Sleezer/The Kansas City Star via AP)

2019 AFC Championship Playoff Preview: New England At Kansas City

2019 AFC Championship Playoff
Check out the official 2019 AFC Championship Playoff preview between the Chiefs and Patriots (John Sleezer/The Kansas City Star via AP)

The two best teams in the AFC will meet for a chance to go to the Super Bowl. The number two seed New England Patriots will travel to Kansas City Chiefs in what is supposed to be cold, snowy weather. These teams did meet earlier this season in New England where the Pats squeaked out a 43-40 win. The good news for Chiefs is they lost that earlier meeting. You never beat the Pats twice in one year. With a chance to go to the Super Bowl, here’s why each team can win the 2019 AFC Championship Playoff game!

New England Patriots At Kansas City Chiefs (KC -3): Sunday, January 20th, 2019 – 6:40 ET (CBS)


2019 AFC Championship Playoff
Brady, Belichick, win. That’s all they have ever needed (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

1: Bill Belichick

Bill Belichick is the greatest coach in NFL history. We know this. However, I want to talk about the job Belichick and defensive coordinator Brian Flores have done with this secondary. Predictably, the Pats found their Malcolm Butler replacement (undrafted J.C. Jackson) and turned him into the best corner in football. It never stops. Why not take the local Walmart greeter too. Jackson has allowed a league-best 42.0 passer rating against. By comparison, Xavien Howard ranks 2nd in the NFL with 62.6 passer rating against. Again, Jackson was undrafted out of Maryland and probably stinks (just like Malcolm Butler does) but this is just what Bill Belichick does. He’s the best teacher in the game.

Here’s what we should be talking about. Which weapon will Belichick take away? Travis Kelce was the target last time around. Just 61 receiving yards for Kelce in Week 6 despite 83 points scored on the field total. We know the deal. Belichick will force Mahomes to make the right decision play after play. Trust Mahomes to do that?

2: Tom Brady

How can you bet against this group? They have zero talent. None. Zilch. It never matters. They just win. We know that Tom Brady is getting old but that bye week heading into the playoffs paid off big time. That’s as perfect as the Patriots have looked in years in the win over the Chargers.

Brady is the greatest quarterback of all time. Why would I ever bet against him? Patrick Mahomes? He ain’t ready for prime time! C’Mon. What’s so great about this week has been the Pats feeding off being an underdog. The Pats suck. The dynasty is over. That’s what the media has trying to predict for years. New England will create any material they can to feed off it. When Brady feeds off it, you know the Pats more than likely win.

3: Patriots Thrive In The Cold

Tom Brady is 13-2 in games that are under 40 degrees. The Patriots always seem to win these cold weather games. The snow will slow the Chiefs playmakers down and that’s exactly what the Pats need. It’s such a gift for them. Tyreek Hill is the X-Factor. With snow, his speed isn’t nearly the issue. That allows them to muddy the middle and taking away Travis Kelce. New England doubled Kelce on virtually every snap. Tyreek Hill was the one that had the big game. However, with the snow, Hill won’t be nearly that big of a factor (hopefully).


2019 AFC Championship Playoff
The boogeyman Tyreek Hill is coming and that should scare every Pats fan (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer

1: Andy Reid

Bill Belichick can win a lot of games just by out-coaching people. That’s not happening with Andy Reid. Since Bill Belichick became a head coach, his teams have allowed just 7 total games where the opponent scored 40 points. Andy Reid is responsible for 4 of those. Reid’s offense put up 40 earlier this year on the road. Why can’t he do it again at home?

This is not a coaching edge for Bill Belichick. It’s more like a draw or narrow edge for Belichick. Reid has taken bums like Donavan McNabb, A.J. Feely, and Kevin Kolb and turned them into studs. Now Andy has his own Tom Brady. Let’s see how this one goes down.

Reid has really done a great job keeping this team afloat after the Kareem Hunt scandal. Damien Williams has been a huge success and the Chiefs really haven’t missed Hunt that much. Williams went for 129 yards in last week’s win over the Colts. Williams is averaging over 5 yards per carry with the Chiefs this year. Now he isn’t the receiving threat that Hunt was but Williams has bee a revelation.

2: Patrick Mahomes

This isn’t the Alex Smith, Chiefs. This is the Patrick Mahomes Chiefs and they are an entirely different animal. Patrick Mahomes has been the best quarterback all year. He’s going to win the MVP for a reason. 50 touchdowns! 50. You know what else? Show me the pass rusher that’s going to bother Mahomes? I’ll wait. New England doesn’t have one.

The Patriots play more man coverage than any other team in the league. That Chiefs need to convert those big plays over the top to steal points on drives they shouldn’t. Tyreek Hill is the X-Factor. Back in Week 6, Hill went for 7 catches, 142 yards, and 3 touchdowns. That needs to happen again. Kelce is going to command the attention because Hill is used in a variety of ways that he is so hard to gameplan for. Tyreek Hill is the one guy that can go hero ball and win the game.

3: Kansas City Pass Rush Can Win This Game

Chris Jones, Dee Ford, and Justin Houston is as good as it gets. KC will get more heat on Luck did Houston did. The three have combined for 37.5 sacks on the season. Kansas City also has a +10 turnover differential on the season and can make plays to create extra possessions. For as bad as the Kansas City defense has been, they are number one in the NFL in sacks (52). Build an early lead and go hunt.

Including the postseason, those numbers are even better. This Chiefs defense has been shaky all year but they truly are much better at home. KC allows just 17.4 points per game at home which ranks 4th in the NFL. The better news is that the Chiefs have the perfect game plan defensively without having to change their style. Tom Brady killed the Chargers by death of 1,000 paper cuts. He always carves up zone coverage perfect he’s so perfect and precise. The way to beat Brady is by rushing with 4 and playing great man coverage on the outside. That’s what the Chiefs do.

I love Andy Reid. He never gets the credit he deserves. I’m going with the Pats. I think the cold is a factor. A Brady vs. Brees Super Bowl feels right. I can’t pick against the Pats until they actually fall off a cliff.

Patriots defeat Chiefs 31-28

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