Can the Chiefs save Christmas?

The professional football players from Kansas City may have been dressed in red suits throughout the month of November and early December, however, they bore no resemblance to a symbol of hope and prosperity like Santa Claus.In fact, you could argue that for a brutal stretch of time that the team more closely mirrored the infamous Grinch and it seemed all but certain that Chiefs fans would be served up a proverbial lump of Christmas-time coal this holiday season.

As the season of perpetual hope grows near, however, Kansas City, once again, finds themselves in the driver seat of the AFC West following two dominant performances at home against division foes. The Los Angeles Chargers were the latest victim as the Chiefs ran away from the road favorites in an impressive 30-13 pummeling in front of an impressive playoff atmosphere at Arrowhead Stadium. The 8-6 Chiefs can now clinch the AFC West for a second consecutive season with a win next Sunday against Miami or at Denver the next week.

So are the Chiefs a team that have figured it out late in the season after seemingly throwing away an impressive 5-0 start or is this mini-resurgence a result of two home games against teams the Chiefs with regularity under Andy Reid?

One positive sign that has unfolded over the past two games is the re-emergence of one-time Rookie of

the Year candidate Kareem Hunt, who punished the Chargers with over 200 yards of total offense and two scores. Hunt had appear to hit a rookie wall midway through the season but has found his footing a bit in the two victories. The much-maligned Chiefs defense has also experienced a bit of a renaissance as they forced L.A. into 4 game-changing turnovers that helped seal the deal.

As we head into the final two weeks of the season it’s very difficult to deduce what the Chiefs true identity is. Can they find the mojo that led them to impressive victories against the Patriots and Eagles early in the season or will they merely be lambs led to slaughter as the playoffs approach with New England and Pittsburgh looming should they win the wildcard round in a few weeks?

There is something to be said for teams finding themselves at the end of the season as we have seen teams like the Packers and Giants find success in January despite menial records. Obviously, there is not a prolific history of the Chiefs going on magical playoff runs and, unbelievably, the team has only won two playoff games at Arrowhead Stadium EVER. That is a trend that could be reversed this season despite the abysmal stretch of play that more closely resembled that of the Cleveland Browns. As of now, you have three teams vying for two wildcard spots (Titans, Bills and Ravens) and, in all likelyhood, one of those three will find themselves playing at Arrowhead the first weekend in January. A win in that round sends you to the final four of the AFC playoffs, but is that enough to satisfy this starving fan-base?

Avatar of Clint Switzer
Full-time sports fan, part-time contributor to society. GASN Sports co-founder, podcast host, filmmaker and writer.

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