- AFC No. 1 Seed | Record: 14-3
- Odds of winning the Super Bowl: +310
- Odds of winning the conference: +145
Greatest vulnerability: Patrick MahomesDecline in performance under pressure.
There are several areas where Mahomes dominates the NFL – he broke the single-season record for offensive yards (5,614) and led the league this season in QB wins, passing yards, passing TDs and total TDs. One important factor, though, is what happened this season when Mahomes was under pressure: His passer rating dropped by 61.3 points, according to Next Generation Stats. This was the third largest such decline in 2022, behind only Lamar Jackson (88.6) and Kyler Murray (68). (For what it’s worth, in Tenth week meeting With the Chiefs, the Jaguars squeezed Mahomes to 31.4 percent of his dropouts, and Jacksonville boasts a 37.4 percent squeeze rate between Week 9 and Super Wild Card Weekend.)
Mahomes’ clean-keeping is paying off, as evidenced by his league-leading 34 passing TDs and a passer rating of 119.0 when not under pressure in 2022, and reducing pressure will be big key for the rest of the Chiefs season. Depending on the production we’ve seen from their offense, they have the right support team to keep the pressure off an offensive scheme; Kansas City became the only 12-man team in NFL history with over 100 scrimmage yards and multiple touchdowns in a single season. They’ve had a different leading future in five of their last six games. Also, 28 of Mahomes’ 41 tackles in the regular season have gone to running backs and tight ends, which ties Mahomes for the most scoring throws in NFL history (with YA Tittle marking from 1963).
One additional note before Saturday’s clash with JaguarsIn the regular season, the Chiefs defense allowed a passer rating of 112.0 against downfield passes (those that travel at least 10 air yards), per NGS, the second highest in the league. Kansas City also allowed Christian Kirk for compiling 54 yards and one TD on three receptions in its closest-than-expected win over Jacksonville again in Week 10.
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