The Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills are meeting in the playoffs for the fifth time in their franchise’s respective histories. The Kansas City Chiefs won the first matchup in 1967 on their way to their appearance in Super Bowl I against the Packers. The Bills would win both of their matchups in the ’90s, including the 1993 AFC Championship game. However, the Chiefs would get their revenge on their way to Super Bowl LVI, winning 38-24 against Buffalo.
Since then, a lot has happened, including a dominating performance by Buffalo in Arrowhead. There is a great deal of history behind these two original AFL franchises. Let’s break down some of the best matchups from this classic AFC matchup.
Andy Reid Vs. Sean McDermott
Andy Reid and Sean McDermott have a long-standing history with one another, dating all the way back to 1999. Reid, then the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, hired McDermott as a Scouting Coordinator. He would then advance on Reid’s staff to DC before leaving to join the Carolina Panthers in 2010. Since joining the Bills as the head coach in 2017, Reid and the Chiefs have only played four times. In those three matchups, the teams are tied at 2-2.
Reid has been known for the dominating coaches from his tree, and McDermott falls in that category. However, McDermott and his BIlls teams have been able to hold their own. Andy Reid, the offensive guru, is known for creative play-calling and capitalizing on his players’ strengths. You have McDermott, a defensive-minded coach with the talent needed to dominate even the most potent offensive units on the other sideline. This chess match is going to be a fun one to watch.
Patrick Mahomes Vs. Josh Allen
This is one of the more obvious matchups to watch. The Allen-Mahomes rivalry is in the early stages but has already generated more high-stakes games than other rivalries that the media has tried to build up. All of the hype around Jackson & Mahomes, Herbert & Mahomes, and at one time Watson & Mahomes, and none have resulted in a Conference Championship matchup. The loss the Bills took in that game fueled their Week Six blowout of the Chiefs. This was one of three losses by more than a score that the Chiefs have been handed since Mahomes became the starter.
The national media has been siding with Josh Allen leading up to this matchup, saying Josh Allen has a chip on his shoulder from that conference championship game. However, please do not underestimate the motivation of Patrick Mahomes after their loss and seeing all of the hype for the Bills and Allen. Both of these QBs will duel, and at the end of the day, it will be just as much about Mahomes V. Allen as it is about the Chiefs V. Bills. I am ready for the fireworks.
Bills Secondary Vs. Chiefs Receiving Core
There has been a lot of talk about the weapons the Chiefs have this week, and for a good reason! The Chiefs feature a unit that boasts a 2nd team All-Pro in Travis Kelce, former All-Pros Tyreek Hill & Josh Gordon, and some solid contributors in Mecole Hardman & Byron Pringle. The unit has helped Mahomes throw for 42 TDs, including five so far in the playoffs. They will be facing some very respectable competition this week when they face the Bills’ secondary.
The Bills secondary features a pair of All-Pro safeties, Jordan Poyer & Mycah Hyde, and a tandem of solid corners. Not to mention, Bills linebackers Matt Milano and Tremaine Edmonds are excellent in coverage. This unit held the Chiefs’ receivers to 230 yards and a couple of scores in their last matchup. In their previous matchup, the Bills had All-Pro corner Tre-Davious White, but that won’t be the case this time. I am eager to see how these two units will match everything on the line this Sunday night. It could be a deciding factor in how the game plays out.
Chiefs Defensive Line Vs. Bills Offensive Line
Now, we bring our attention to the trenches, the Chiefs’ defensive line against the Bills’ offensive line. A big man showdown that I cannot wait to see unfold. The Chiefs’ defensive line features some serious talent and depth. Led by their monstrous tackle, Chris Jones, their unit was the main component that turned the defense around after Week Seven. Alongside Chris Jones are Pro-Bowl defensive ends Melvin Ingram & Frank Clark, and defensive tackles Jarran Reed & Derrick Nnadi. This unit did not look this way in the Chiefs’ first match-up with the Bills. They had not yet acquired Ingram, Clark was fresh off of injury, and Jones was playing out of position.
The Bills feature a fantastic line themselves. Dion Dawkins was one of the best offensive tackles this year, Mitch Morse is one of the top centers in the league, and their unit has been dominant in the run and pass protection. Keeping Josh Allen safe will be their top priority in this game; Allen is a mobile QB, but the Chiefs feature a very athletic unit. This could be another one of those matchups that dictate the pace and result of the game.