Packers vs Chiefs Game Preview
The Chiefs host the Packers in a rare meeting between two teams on the brink of a Super Bowl run. Green Bay will get a shot of adrenaline with quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ return while the Chiefs will be led by Patrick Mahomes, the next big thing at quarterback.
Both teams are adjusting to new play-callers and have yet to fulfil their championship promises. This could finally be the year and this preseason game serves as a potential preview for Super Bowl LIII.
Green Bay Packers
Once again, the Packers are a favourite to win the Super Bowl. Despite having one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time, the Packers only have one Lombardi trophy and management finally baulked and cleaned house.
Gone are most of the old Packers’ front office personnel including their general manager and play-callers on both sides of the ball. A strong draft addressing the team’s defence is new general manager Brian Gutekunst sending a message that change is coming and fans hope it’s a change for the better.
Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs lost plenty in the offseason. Offensive coordinator Matt Nagy went to coach the Bears, Alex Smith and Marcus Peters were traded and several long-time veterans left.
You could say it’s a new era in Kansas City, especially with Mahomes now running the show. Coach Andy Reid now has one last shot to push the underachieving Chiefs beyond an early playoff exit or more changes could be coming.
It could be a shootout if Rodgers and Mahomes see the field together, but it’s highly unlikely. Mahomes may get a few snaps as the teams’ second teams outduel each other. That edge goes to the Chiefs who are just a tad deeper on key positions.
Packers vs Chiefs Head-to-Head Records
The Packers and Chiefs first met in 1967 as part of the first-ever Super Bowl. Green Bay would blow out Kansas City 35-10 on the strength of quarterback Bart Starr’s Super Bowl MVP performance. Kansas City would then take over future meetings winning six of their next eight.
Their first regular season meeting (second overall) happened six years later during the 1973 season, which ended in a tie. Following this game, the Chiefs would win their first game against Green Bay in 1977. They wouldn’t meet until a decade later during the 1987 season, which Green Bay would win.
From 1989 to 2003, Kansas City would dominate the rivalry winning five straight including three games at Lambeau Field. Green Bay would snap the losing streak and finally win during the 2007 season, Brett Favre’s final year as a Packer. The Packers would again win in 2015, their most recent game.
The Packers 31.8 winning percentage against the Chiefs is the second-worst they have among active NFL teams (they are only worse against the Dolphins). Green Bay hasn’t won consecutive games against KC and with the Chiefs boasting a more complete roster, the trend should continue.
Green Bay Packers Recent History
As one of the oldest franchises, Green Bay has experienced the longest period of success. Their first period came in the infancy of the NFL. Green Bay became the first NFL dynasty winning three straight NFL Championships from 1929 to 1931 then winning three more between 1936 to 1944.
Their second period came during the iconic days of Bart Starr and Vince Lombardi where they would win three more NFL Championships plus the first two Super Bowls. After almost 25 years of futility, the franchise would be resurrected during the mid-’90s and would capture another Super Bowl in 1996.
Following the Favre era, the Packers quickly transitioned to Rodgers who would again lead the Packers to Super Bowl glory in 2010. In the last 25 years, the Packers have won two Super Bowls, a dozen division championships and have only missed the playoffs six times.
Kansas City Chiefs Recent History
The Chiefs are younger than the Packers, but they were up there with them during Green Bay’s second dynasty. Kansas City was a powerhouse during the ’60s and faced Green Bay in a losing effort in the first-ever Super Bowl. They would get the job done and win the franchise’s only Super Bowl in 1969.
Unfortunately, it would go downhill from there. The Chiefs would only make one playoff appearance per each decade during the ’70s and ’80s. They had a brief resurgence during the ’90s and made it as far as the AFC Championship but several years of sporadic playoff appearances would ensue until Andy Reid took over in 2013.
The Chiefs have had five consecutive winning seasons and four playoff appearances, their best stretch since the ’90s. But their regular season success is consistently sullied by disappointing playoff exit. The Chiefs haven’t won a playoff game at Arrowhead in almost 25 seasons
Green Bay Packers Outlook
Judging by Rodgers’s comments earlier this month, he is tired taking crap from the team. The two-time MVP expressed his frustration with his new receivers. The Packers abruptly cut Jordy Nelson and didn’t draft a receiver until the fourth-round. Though they did sign tight end Jimmy Graham, Rodgers needs more help.
Gutekunst had his hands full as he used most of the Packers’ picks to fix the defence. He drafted cornerbacks Jaire Alexander and Joshua Jackson with their first two picks then scooped linebacker Oren Burks with the third. He also added a few pass rushers during day three of the NFL Draft.
Green Bay ranked in the bottom-third of the NFL in defence last season and they have failed to reach the Super Bowl consistently because of it. The upgrades on defence won’t immediately pay dividends but so long as they stay the course and keep building, another Lombardi trophy is achievable.
Kansas City Chiefs Outlook
Kansas City did a mini-rebuild and cleaned house letting go of nearly half the main roster including quarterback Alex Smith, pass rushers Tamba Hali and Derrick Johnson, and cornerback Marcus Peters. They promoted Mahomes as their starting quarterback and added Sammy Watkins as his new top receiver.
But most of the Chiefs’ renovations came on the defensive end. They signed nose tackle Xavier Williams and used a third-rounder to take Derrick Nnadi from FSU. They also bolstered the secondary drafting safety Armani Watts and signing cornerbacks David Amerson and Kendall Fuller.
The Chiefs may have lost a lot of household names, but they are better this coming season. Mahomes will be a revelation at quarterback and their new defence isn’t just as good but is younger. KC is built to win now and in the future.
Mahomes will likely be playing with the first team while Chad Henne and Matt McGloin will battle for the second team. KC is looking thin at receiver, but that could be a good thing as the backups have a solid shot to make the team prompting a spirited battle. Running back is another story.
Kareem Hunt may not get many reps because the likes of Spencer Ware and Charcandrick West are waiting in the wings. Then there’s also Damien Williams. Defence is where KC will show its depth. Several of their high-end picks from the last two drafts are hungry and eager to win the starting job in light of the roster turnover.
Green Bay doesn’t have the same depth as the Chiefs, especially on defence. Their top picks from this season are likely to start due to how thin they are. It becomes more of a contest on the offence where it’s every receiver for himself. DeShone Kizer and Brett Hundley are also fiercely competing for that backup job.
KC’s depth will be too much for the Packers and they’ll continue their winning ways.