The Kansas City Chiefs head into Week 10, their bye week, an undefeated 9-0. The Chiefs are coming off a 23-13 road win over the Buffalo Bills in which the defense and special teams once again did all of the scoring for Kansas City.
The Chiefs now have their eye squarely on their Week 11 showdown with the Denver Broncos, and they have the good fortune of a bye week to gather themselves before the game.
Bye Week Rest
While the Chiefs have been phenomenally healthy relative to the rest of the league this season, a midseason bye week is fortuitous. Kansas City can rest players and try to get the entire team healthy for a stretch run.
The Chiefs have relied heavily on running back Jamaal Charles to get them to where they are, and no one player could use the bye week to let lingering dings heal more than Charles.
Dwayne Bowe, Anthony Fasano, and Dontari Poe have also had various minor issues over the past few weeks. Nothing that prevented any of them from playing, but an extra week to heal going into the biggest game of the season to date is something any team or player would welcome.
Bye Week Preparation
Having extra time to break down tape on your opponent, and prepare for their tendencies, is a severely underrated aspect to a team's bye week. When given a bye week to prepare for a regular-season opponent, Kansas City head coach Andy Reid is a staggeringly effective 13-1. The lone loss came last season against the Atlanta Falcons.
To further belabor that point, when given any extra time to prepare for a regular-season opponent (bye week or Thursday night game the week before), Reid is 17-2. Both losses came last year in Reid's final season with the Eagles.
The Kansas City Chiefs are going to have a full two weeks to prepare for a Denver Broncos team that in all likelihood will be without their head coach.
|Team||Wins||Losses||Points For||Points Against||Net Points||Win Streak|
|Kansas City Chiefs||9||0||215||111||104||Won 9|
|Denver Broncos||7||1||343||218||125||Won 1|
|San Diego Chargers||4||4||192||174||18||Lost 1|
|Oakland Raiders||3||5||146||199||-53||Lost 1|
The Chiefs are in the driver's seat in the AFC West, but a loss to Denver in Week 11 could be the difference in the top seed in the playoffs and the fifth or sixth seed. Kansas City needs to definitively take care of business against Denver and put itself in position to control its own destiny going forward.
The San Diego Chargers are not technically eliminated from winning the division; the math is beginning to get pretty slanted the other direction. With both Kansas City and Denver looking to grab the division, look for the Chargers to try to play the spoiler down the stretch.
On a trivia note: 18 teams in the Super Bowl era have started their NFL seasons 9-0. All 18 of those teams made the playoffs, and 11 of those 18 teams made the Super Bowl. Seven of the 11 teams that advanced to the Super Bowl won the game.