The NFL 2022 Playoffs have reached the divisional round and that begins with a double header of action on Saturday where the two number one seeds will be looking to make it through to their respective Championship match next week. The Kansas City Chiefs are first up when they host the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The Jaguars performed miracles to make it into this match and might well feel they are on a free roll from here on in. That puts the pressure on Kansas City who had their feet up last week and will look to use freshness to their advantage.
Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs held off a number of challenges to reach the number one seed in the AFC, although as we know there will be no home field advantage for them throughout the postseason because if they win this they will be playing in Atlanta next week regardless of who they face such is the way the league have worked everything after the unfortunate situation in light of the Damar Hamlin cardiac arrest a few weeks ago.
The positive for the Chiefs is they have been to this stage of a season before and now they go up against a quarterback who has never been in this position in the past. The Chiefs defence hasn’t always come up with the goods this term but they can get after the quarterback and that will be their task here. The one thing we know with the Chiefs is their offense will get it done whether it is through the air or on the ground.
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If you had told the Jacksonville Jaguars that they would be involved in this match when they trailed the Los Angeles Chargers 27-0 last week they might have thought you were stupid but they came good in the second half at the exact time the Bolts began to choke and eventually came through to seal a memorable victory. While there were obvious negatives to come from that at the beginning, the belief and strength that comeback will give this team could be huge.
The big thing in that comeback was how their defence switched on in the second period. They will need to play all four quarters here and play them very well if they are going to get the job done. The other thing that needs to happen is Trevor Lawrence needs to be a lot more accurate. If he gives the Chiefs picks in his first two drives like he gave the Chargers’ defence then Kansas City could be away and gone and Jacksonville won’t catch this lot if they get away from them.
I think the general consensus is that the Kansas City Chiefs will win this match but I’m often cautious about teams who get the bye and the week off because it isn’t necessarily easy to just come out and pick up where you left off. I’m particularly weary here because the Jacksonville Jaguars might feel the have nothing to lose after the incredible way last week unfolded. I still think the Chiefs will win by double digit caps are rarely for me in the postseason.
Jacksonville Jaguars are the worst in the league at covering tight ends. The Chargers exposed that weakness last week when Gerald Everett went for 108 yards from just six catches. That makes me think that Travis Kelce could be in for a big night here. He has a receiving line of just 79.5 yards which is low based on his previous postseason returns and the fact he is the go to man for Patrick Mahomes at this time of year. The more competitive the Jaguars are the further Kelce could clear this line by but even in building any Chiefs lead I expect the elite tight end to reach 80 yards.
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