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2014 Kansas City Chiefs Odds | Season Preview | NFL Predictions

2014 Chiefs NFL Handicapping

Tougher Schedule, Heightened Expectations Will Force Chiefs To Take Step Back In AFC West

The Kansas City Chiefs were the Cinderella story of the AFC in 2013. When the clock struck midnight in their AFC Wild Card collapse against the Indianapolis Colts, the biggest question was whether or not this team had peaked.

2014 Kansas City Chiefs Team Preview/Predictions

  • 2013 Record: 11-5
  • ATS Record: 9-7

2014 Chiefs Futures

  • Super Bowl Odds: +2800
  • Conference Odds: +1200
  • AFC West Odds: +550
  • 2014 NFL Regular Season Wins: 8

Injuries played a major role in that playoff loss but the Chiefs as a team overachieved throughout the regular season to get to that point and with a tougher schedule this year they could take a step back.

Head coach Andy Reid and general manager John Dorsey made several moves to turn things around in their first season together in Kansas City. Alex Smith was acquired to start at quarterback and proved capable with 23 touchdown passes.

Smith makes up for a lack of arm strength with his intelligence and accuracy, and he can also run if the opening is there. Another year in Reid’s west coast offense should help after he improved down the stretch last season.

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Jamaal Charles lined up as both a running back and slot receiver in last year and he ended up leading the NFL in rushing touchdowns and total scores. Charles is one of the league’s premier playmakers and Knile Davis is a quality backup.

The Chiefs added burner De’Anthony Thomas out of Oregon in the fourth round of this year’s draft and despite being just 174 pounds he is a threat to go the distance every time he touches the football. Reid needs more weapons and Thomas will see touches at receiver behind Dwayne Bowe, Donnie Avery, and Junior Hemingway.

Tight end Anthony Fasano is a solid security option on every play. The biggest concern is an offensive line that lost three starters including left tackle Brandon Albert.

Last year’s first round pick Eric Fisher is set to slide over to the left side, which leaves Donald Stephenson as the right tackle next to guard Jeff Linkenbach on the right side.
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No AFC defense allowed fewer points than the Chiefs a year ago, which was in big part because they finished with the third-most interceptions in the league and second in turnover differential. Kansas City ranked 24th in total defense and could take a step back if they don’t improve overall.

The Chiefs drafted defensive end Dee Ford in the first round to groom as a 3-4 linebacker in their system. Ford is slotted behind Tamba Hali and Justin Houston and will contribute in pass-rushing situations.

Pro Bowl linebacker Derrick Johnson is back in the middle with free agent addition Joe Mays set to line up next to him. Nose Tackle Dontari Poe is a beast that eats up space and helps free the linebackers up to make plays.

Poe will line up next to Vance Walker and Mike DeVito on an underrated line. Kansas City also added third-round pick cornerback Phillip Gaines to solidify its depth at the position behind Sean Smith, Marcus Cooper, and Brandon Flowers.

Gaines has elite speed but will have to work to earn his keep in the NFL. Husain Abdullah gets the first shot to replace departed free safety Kendrick Lewis and the presence of Pro Bowl strong safety Eric Berry should help the transition.

After overachieving a year ago, the Chiefs face a tough schedule and also have to deal with the pressure of increased expectations.

Kansas City will battle with the San Diego Chargers for the second spot in the division behind Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos, but ultimately they will settle for third place in the tough AFC West.

2014 Chiefs Predictions

  • Place they’ll finish in AFC West: 3rd
  • Place they’ll finish in AFC Conference: 6th
  • Over/Under Wins Prediction: OVER

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