After the dismantling of the Denver Broncos the past two days and departure of their head coach, the time may be ripe for a new AFC West division champion. With consecutive winning records in the past two seasons, the Chiefs are an early favorite to claim that crown.
The Chiefs’ reporter BJ Kissel posted a short article on the Chiefs 2015 opponents here. While we do not when the Chiefs will play next season, we do know which games are home and away. Below is a look at their opponents the Chiefs have to beat to claim their first AFC West title since 2010:
Total home opponents’ overall 2014 record: 67-61
The Chiefs 2015 opponents at Arrowhead include 3 teams that made the playoffs in 2014: Denver, Detroit and Pittsburgh. The Chiefs have lost 6 straight to Denver overall and 6 straight at Arrowhead. Peyton Manning’s return in 2015 is unclear, and a new coaching staff is coming in, so the Chiefs need to welcome the next Broncos coach with a pounding in KC. The Chiefs have lost 3 straight to Pittsburgh and 5 straight at Arrowhead, so 2015 offers another chance to end a losing streak. The Lions game is actually taking place in London as owner Clark Hunt is trying to bid for a Super Bowl in KC.
Other teams coming to Arrowhead that were in the mix for the 2014 playoffs but just missed out include the San Diego Chargers, Cleveland Browns, and Buffalo Bills. The chargers and Bills had the same 9-7 record as the Chiefs and the Browns finished 7-9. The Chiefs essentially knocked the Chargers out of the playoffs in the last game of the season, and KC and Buffalo will play for the 8th consecutive season. The Chiefs have won 2 straight against the Bills but Buffalo has a slight 4-3 edge over the past 7 seasons.
The final two opponents at Arrowhead, the Chicago Bears and Oakland Raiders, both finished in last place in their division in 2014.
Total opponents’ 2014 overall record: 72-55-1
The Chiefs 2015 away opponents include 4 teams that made the playoffs in 2014: the Denver Broncos, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, and Green Bay Packers. The Chiefs have lost 3 straight in Denver, 4 straight overall versus Baltimore, 3 straight overall versus the Bengals (and 4 straight in Cincinnati), and have won 6 of the past 7 overall against Green Bay.
The Chiefs’ away opponents that almost made the playoffs in 2014 are the San Diego Chargers and Houston Texans. The Chiefs have won 2 straight against San Diego after losing the previous 4, and are 3-3 all time versus the Texans. (I am very excited for the Texans game as I live in Houston now – please come tailgate with me!)
The Chiefs final away opponents are the Minnesota Vikings and Oakland Raiders. Minnesota finished 7-9 in 2014 and the Chiefs have won 2 straight versus the Vikings. The Chiefs have won 3 of the past 4 versus Oakland.
It will be an exciting season and I cannot wait to see what moves the Chiefs make this offseason. Go Chiefs!