Throughout the week, the question regarding the game between the Kansas City Chiefs and New York Jets hasn’t been about which team will win, but how large the Chiefs’ winning margin will be once the game is all over.
Kansas City is coming off a 43-16 win over the Denver Broncos in Week 7, with former Jet Le’Veon Bell making his debut for the Chiefs. Kansas City isn’t looking past the Jets, with defensive tackle Chris Jones saying as much:
Chris Jones on the Jets: "That's a very good football team. People forget that because they haven't won a game.''
— Adam Teicher (@adamteicher) October 29, 2020
Even though some found his comment unintentionally funny, the 0-7 Jets actually showed signs of life in the first half of their Week 7 matchup against the Buffalo Bills, racing to an early 10-0 lead. But then the Bills went to work and held the Jets to just four yards in the second half to erase the deficit and take a 18-10 victory.
The 6-1 Chiefs are roughly three-touchdown favorites against the lowly Jets. Everybody thinks Kansas City is going to win. That doesn’t mean we can’t make some bold predictions.
1. Patrick Mahomes passes for three touchdowns
Three seasons ago, the Jets had a chance to draft Mahomes with the sixth overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. They even brought in the Texas Tech product for a private workout, but they ultimately drafted Jamal Adams out of LSU, whom they traded to the Seattle Seahawks this past offseason offseason.
Mahomes admitted he thought there was interest from the Jets, but says they took a great player in Adams, a two-time Pro Bowler. However, one can’t help but think that the reigning Super Bowl MVP may want to show them what they missed when they chose not to make him their franchise quarterback.
The 25-year-old is coming off a quiet game against the Broncos, as he completed just 15 of his 23 pass attempts for 200 yards and one touchdown, the lowest amount of passing yards he has had in a game this season. It’s hard to see Mahomes having a second straight subpar game, especially against a Jets defense that ranks 23rd in yards allowed per game (385.0) and 24th in passing yards allowed per game (259.4). The Jets obviously regret passing on the 2018 NFL MVP in the draft three years ago, but Mahomes may just remind them up close of what they could have had on Sunday.
2. Le’Veon Bell has a big game and a touchdown against his former team
Much like Ryan Tannehill, Robby Anderson, and Jarvis Landry, Bell is expected to be the next former player of Jets coach Adam Gase to rejuvenate his career after getting a fresh start with a different team. Before being released by New York and signing with the Chiefs, the 28-year-old running back “liked” tweets from media members saying he was not being used properly by Gase on offense.
Bell had six carries and 39 rushing yards in his first game with the Chiefs, and he’s feeling refreshed:
Fresh start, feels good… ❄️ thankful to be a part of this organization. On to the next. pic.twitter.com/u1ThOf1mT8
— Le'Veon Bell (@LeVeonBell) October 26, 2020
Two of Bell’s six carries against the Broncos went for 16 yards, a startling contrast to his time with the Jets, when just one of his 264 rushing attempts went over 15 yards. His 6.5 yards per carry against Denver also exceeded any single performance during his 17-game tenure in New York. In fact, the last time he reached that mark was in a Week 4 game against the Chiefs in 2016, back when he played for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
On Sunday, the three-time Pro Bowler will have a chance to show Gase up close how he should be used in an offense. Gase, however, said he believes his former player is only worried about winning a game, just like he is. Whether or not he has extra motivation, Bell seems happy joining the defending champions and will team up with rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire to wreak havoc against a Jets defense that gives up an average of 125.6 rushing yards per game.
3. Chiefs hold the Jets to 12 points or less
The Jets are a poor defensive team, but it’s their offense that is truly putrid. New York is averaging 12.1 points through seven games while averaging 264.4 total yards and 159.9 passing yards per game, which are all league-worst marks.
While it is their dynamic offense that gets most of the attention, Kansas City’s defense also ranks among the league’s best. The Chiefs are holding opponents to 20.4 points per game, which ranks ninth in the league, and allowing just 211.7 passing yards per game, which is the fourth-best mark. After giving up 40 points to the Las Vegas Raiders in their only loss so far in Week 5, Kansas City held the Bills and Broncos to 17 and 16 points, respectively. It’s hard to believe New York will exceed those numbers.
4. Chiefs dominate in another big win to move to 7-1
While Bell facing his former team and head coach provides an interesting subplot, the Chiefs will easily hand the Jets their eighth consecutive defeat this season while picking up their third straight win to move up to 7-1. With Mahomes finding his usual targets in Travis Kelce, Tyreek Hill, and Demarcus Robinson, plus Bell and Edwards-Helaire anchoring the running game, it’s going to be hard to stop the high-powered Chiefs offense.
On defense, Chris Jones and Tyrann Mathieu will add pressure to Sam Darnold, while the secondary will look to pick off the struggling quarterback’s passes and wreak havoc like they did against Drew Lock and the Broncos in Week 7. The only way the defending champions will lose is if they look past the lowly Jets, but they can probably still win even if they mail it in.
All throughout the week, though, Kansas City has made it a point to stress the importance of taking every opponent seriously. Should the Chiefs play their normal game, a blowout is to be expected once the Jets walk into Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday.