As I See It.
There’s no way around it.
The Kansas City Chiefs can now be called a dynasty, after their comeback 25-22 overtime win over the 49ers in SB LVIII at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. You get to shout that to the treetops when you win two straight, and three of the last five.
Patrick Mahomes has moved into GOAT consideration, and it doesn’t matter what any of us think about that.
Right here I’d like to acknowledge our sponsors. Atwal Eye Care, the Bills’ official eye specialists who did an incredible job on my cataract surgery recently.
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Wow, has the Super Bowl changed from when the Bills went to four straight in the early 90’s. I was there for all four. Tickets were expensive, but many regular folks could afford them. Not now. The big game is for the big corporations and wealthy elite. It’s a celebrity showcase. With the addition of legalized gambling on games, we now hear the “the games are fixed”, or “scripted”, more and more.
It’s ridiculous. While it’s not a stretch to believe an official or two could be bought – although there’s no proof of that – it’s simply an impossibility to “fix” a game. Every play can go in many directions, depending on how players react to the fast changing circumstances. It can not be altered or choreographed without being noticed. Poo poo this if you want, and I know many of you reading this will, but think it through. Details. How can the hundreds of people directly involved all decide together to alter the outcome, with no one finding out about it? Not possible.
As a former Chiefs fan who grew up loving Len Dawson and company, and a fan who’s seen many games in person at Arrowhead Stadium before settling down in Buffalo many eons ago, I do have a different perspective than most people I know.
It was disappointing to say the least, to see Travis Kelce physically push 65 year old HC Andy Reid and yell in his face. Kelce has always had anger issues, but Reid has talked about that before. They hugged and made up, but that doesn’t make it right. When I was a young HS pitcher, I threw my glove down on the mound. My dad, who’s now 98 and healthy as a horse, had me spend half the next day digging a ditch. The other half of the day, I filled it back up.
Last time I ever threw my glove! I DO get it. Kelce is driven, in a game played by physical freaks out to kill each other. At the time of the “shove”, he had one catch for one yard. In the second half, Kelce had nine catches for 93 yards, including a 38 yard beauty on the winning drive in OT. Reid could have been “old school” and benched him, but sometimes you let it go. Sean McDermott has been handling Stefon Diggs in much the same way. He knows Diggs craves attention and can’t hide his emotions, but he’s worth the trouble.
Now for something that some of you will agree with, but many won’t. That’s fine, it’s my opinion. I honestly think Josh Allen is just as good as Mahomes, and there is an absolute bias against Allen from most of the main stream media, and many Bills fans as well. It’s really astonishing to me, that because he has yet to match the Super Bowl success of Mahomes, Tom Brady and Joe Montana, his greatness is diminished somehow.
It’s not an excuse, but pure fact that winning a Super Bowl for ANY NFL QB is a combination of great skills yes, but other circumstances beyond their control as well. The Chiefs didn’t get into this year’s playoffs because of Mahomes only. Their defense was great during a regular season when Mahomes and the Chief’s offense struggled. After a hot start, they sputtered. A 24-9 loss at Denver in late October. A 21-17 home loss to the Eagles in November and 20-17 home loss to the Bills in December. It got worse. A 20-14 home loss to the Raiders on Christmas Day. In the final game at the LA Chargers with Blaine Gabbert (yay Mizzou) starting and Easton Stick for the Chargers, the Chief’s D scored a 97 yard fumble return TD in an ugly 13-12 win.
The Chiefs were able to rest Mahomes because they’d already clinched the 3-seed in the playoffs, and their 11-6 record was identical to the Bills’ roller coaster season.
While the Chiefs D was thriving, the Bills D was inconsistent at best in part because of key injuries, and Allen carried the burden of facing must win situations every week from a 6-6 point forward. He did it, but sacrificed his body more than almost any quarterback other than MVP Lamar Jackson.
Side track here. Jackson MVP over Mahomes? Or even Allen? Ludicrous.
Which brings me to my earlier point about Allen being as good as Mahomes. I fully believe that, and this is not degrading Mahomes, but rather giving Allen his due. His much overrated turnover ratio isn’t born out by facts at all. He had 44 total TD’s this past season, with 15 of them coming with his legs. He did this despite an OC change in mid season, and despite his #1 wr Stefon Diggs all but disappearing. Allen’s TD to turnover ratio is FAR better than all but a couple HOF qb’s, and better than Mahomes in 2023.
Allen’s playoff stats are amazing, but not in Mahomes’ territory. In ten career playoff games, Allen has 21 TD passes and 4 rushing TD’s (5-5) with only 4 int’s. That’s hardly a “turnover machine”.
In seven seasons – Mahomes didn’t play his rookie season – Mahomes is 15-3 in the playoffs with 41 TD’s and 8 INTs. While he doesn’t run as much as Allen, Mahomes also has five rushing TD’s in the playoffs, and a couple of scrambles in the win over the 49ers were huge.
So statistically, you give it to Mahomes, but not by pushing Allen down. Allen has beaten Mahomes in 3 straight regular season games at Arrowhead, and was (sorry) 13 seconds from a playoff win at Arrowhead. The Bills played the Chiefs extremely tough in their Divisional playoff 27-24 loss, in a game where the Chiefs D tightened up in the 4th qtr, much as they did in the second half against the 49ers. Allen had no turnovers and wasn’t sacked, as he accounted for 3 TD’s – one passing and two rushing.
The Chiefs success goes beyond Mahomes of course. They have a strong front office and great coach with Andy Reid. Maybe the biggest aspect of their success, is they aren’t afraid to part company with veteran players who are getting older and more expensive. The Chiefs had ONE starter on defense in this Super Bowl that played four years ago on that SB team. Several rookies stepped right in, and a year’s experience has made them even better. They weren’t afraid to trade the NFL’s most explosive player in Tyreek Hill – and won anyway.
It’s gonna be more of a challenge for Bills GM Brandon Beane. He’s in a contractual corner with Stefon Diggs and Von Miller, and neither can be traded or cut. Their age and $ numbers are prohibitive. Will Diggs go along with a restructured deal that is essentially a cut? What about Tre White? Jordan Poyer? We already know Micah Hyde won’t be back.
The AFC East is going to be better. The Pats will have, likely, Heisman Trophy winner Jayden Daniels with the 3rd pick, and he’s the real deal. Will Bill Belichick be missed? Hmmm.
Bottom line though, even as we call the Chiefs a dynasty, the Allen-Mahomes rivalry is one of the NFL’s best. The TV numbers and merchandise sales show it. They’re extremely close, and we already know we’ll see the Chiefs again in 2024 at Highmark Stadium.
How good is THAT?
Another thanks to Atwal Eye Care, BluTusk Tech and GlobalVending Group.
Editor’s babble: We are thankful for Ed Kilgore’s contributions to our blog. You can also find Ed on Xwitter @Kilgore2Ed.