It’s win-and-get-in for the Kansas City Chiefs, who can clinch the AFC West title with a victory over the visiting Miami Dolphins on Sunday. The Dolphins’ playoff prospects are far more complicated.
While Kansas City simply needs one win or one loss by the Los Angeles Chargers over the final two weeks of the season to capture the division crown, the Dolphins must win their last two to get to 8-8, then hope for a good bit of help to knock off other wild-card contenders. “Our job is to go out there and try to win one game and see what happens,” Miami coach Adam Gase told reporters. “We really lost control of our own destiny after last week, but there’s a lot of things that possibly could happen, but we’ve got to take care of our business before worrying out about anybody else.” Miami put itself back in the playoff picture with back-to-back wins, including a 27-20 stunner over New England in Week 14, but last week’s 24-16 loss at Buffalo put the team in a tough spot. The Chiefs again are looking like a dangerous playoff team, having won two straight in impressive fashion following a stretch during which they lost six of seven.
TV: 1 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Chiefs -10.5. O/U: 43.5
ABOUT THE DOLPHINS (6-8): It’s remarkable Miami still is in the playoff picture while possessing the league’s 28th-ranked offense, which has committed 26 turnovers. Second-year running back Kenyan Drake has buoyed the offense since Jay Ajayi was traded to Philadelphia, topping 100 yards from scrimmage in three straight games, and the defense has shown flashes of dominance. Miami held Denver and New England under 270 total yards in consecutive victories and played well enough to win at Buffalo last week if not for three offensive turnovers.
ABOUT THE CHIEFS (8-6): Kansas City’s offense endured an inexplicable slump in the middle of the season but recently has returned to form. Alex Smith leads the league with a 105.4 passer rating and rookie running back Kareem Hunt ranks second in the NFL with 1,201 rushing yards. The defense has been maligned all season but has held three of its last four opponents to 307 total yards or fewer and forced seven turnovers over the past two games.
1. In two seasons in the NFL, Kansas City WR/PR Tyreek Hill has scored 10 touchdowns of 60 yards or longer – six more than any other player over that span.
2. Landry has caught at least five passes in every game this season.
3. Chiefs TE Travis Kelce leads NFL tight ends with 79 receptions and ranks second with 991 receiving yards.
PREDICTION: Chiefs 27, Dolphins 20