The Kansas City Chiefs are ready to start the 2013 season and make their fans forget all about the debacle that was the 2012 season. After going a league-worst 2-14 last year, Kansas City has their sights set on a bounce-back year.
Andy Reid brings his West Coast offense to town, something that should help new quarterback Alex Smith jumpstart his career. Add to that the No. 1 overall pick Eric Fisher on the offensive line, and you have reason to believe that the Chiefs can be like the 2012 Indianapolis Colts and go from last place to the playoffs in just one year.
And like the Colts last year, the Chiefs get the advantage of having a last-place schedule. Not only do they play in a division with only one other strong team, they also have a relatively easy slate of games outside the division as well.
Let’s start the record prediction with their division games. The Chiefs play the vaunted Denver Broncos twice, most likely ending with two losses. The other four division games against the Oakland Raiders and the San Diego Chargers are much easier. Let’s say the Chiefs win three of those four games. That starts us out with a 3-3 record in the division. Not too bad so far.
Next, let’s find some games that should be easy wins. The Chiefs play the Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans and Buffalo Bills on the road, and the Cleveland Browns at home. Give them wins against those weaker teams and we’re at 7-3.
Alright, that sounds pretty good, but now we have to take a look at the games that are likely losses for Kansas City. More good news here. The Chiefs only game, outside of the Broncos, that looks like a sure-fire loss is when the Houston Texans come to town in Week 7. Add in that loss and you have a 7-4 record.
To finish the tally you then need to look at the 50-50-type games. They play the Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants and Colts at home. They also have to go on the road against the Philadelphia Eagles and the Washington Redskins. Those NFC East opponents, plus the Colts, will determine the outcome of the year for the Chiefs.
Considering they get three out of those five games at home, I’ll give them a 3-2 record in the 50-50 games. That leaves us with a final mark for the Chiefs of 10-6, good enough for them to be in contention for a Wild-Card slot this winter.
The Chiefs have the talent and the schedule to make the playoffs this year. If they can do well against the NFC East and take care of business in the division, they just might find themselves there.