The divisional round of the 2015 NFL playoffs begin on Saturday when the Kansas City Chiefs take on the defending Super Bowl Champions, the New England Patriots. The game will be played at Gillette Stadium and is scheduled to begin at 4:35 P.M. ET.
The Kansas City Chiefs are coming off an impressive win against the Houston Texans in the Wild Card game played last week. In that game, the Chiefs defense harassed Texans quarterback Brian Hoyer all game long, forcing him to turn the ball over five times.
Offensively, the Chiefs didn’t do much in the first half of the game, but they turned things around in the second half thanks to the favorable field position their defense put them in. Alex Smith made a few plays with his feet, which kept the Texans defense on their toes all day.
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Smith also had a 60 yard run called back due to a holding penalty, which means the Patriots will have to keep someone back to spy on him if they don’t want to get burned on the ground by Smith.
New England finished with the second best record in the AFC, and were off last week. The team was supposed to use the extra time to heal and prepare for their next opponent, but they had a few distractions instead.
On Sunday, Chandler Jones, the Patriots leading pass rusher who had 12.5 sacks this season, went to the Foxborough Police department after a bad reaction to synthetic marijuana. The news and the following media attention has been a distraction for the Patriots this week, and their fans will be hoping it doesn’t affect their performance on Saturday.
Rob Gronkowski, the team’s best offensive weapon is dealing with a knee injury that could affect his availability for the game against the Chiefs this week. If Gronkowski is unable to play, the Patriots will be without their leading receiver.
The last time the Patriots and Chiefs faced each other, the Kansas City Chiefs dominated the Patriots, which led to some talk about the end of the Patriots successful run since Brady became the starter.
The Chiefs were able to win the game with a dominant rushing attack and a very stingy defense. They will not have Jamaal Charles to help them in this game, but their defense has been playing lights out recently, and should have some success against the Patriots banged up offensive line.
The Patriots have the advantage of having more playoff experience than the Chiefs, but the Chiefs have won 11 straight games and won’t be intimidated by the Patriots.
Patriots vs Chiefs Betting Lines
The Chiefs have played remarkably well over the last three months of the season and look like the better team, but it is hard to go up against the defending champions playing in front of their fans so I’m picking New England to cover the spread.
Play: Patriots -5 @ BetOnline.ag