Can the Buffalo Bills defeat the Kansas City Chiefs on the road? The last time the two teams faced off at Arrowhead Stadium, the Bills beat down the Chiefs 41-7. In addition to the blowout, the Bills have had some recent success at Arrowhead, winning three of the last four games. Tomorrow’s game features two terrific defenses so it wouldn’t be surprising to see a low scoring game. With that in mind, here are five predictions for Sunday’s game.
Marcus Thigpen delivers big return
Buffalo released Thigpen earlier in the season after some ineffective play. The returner made a few poor decisions, calling for fair catches inside the 10 yard line. Since Thigpen left, Buffalo found that he wasn’t easy to replace. The team had players such as Denarius Moore, Boom Herron, Boobie Dixon and Leodis McKelvin attempt return responsibilities and the results were disastrous. Herron and Dixon looked like they were moving and slow motion and Moore never gave the team any spark. As for McKelvin, I’m confident in saying that every Bills fan would be okay if the defensive back never handled another punt return.
On Sunday, Thigpen makes the most in his return to the Bills and has at least one return of 30 yards or more. In a game that could be a defensive battle, every yard will help and Thigpen will flip the field in Buffalo’s favor.
Sammy Watkins sees a season high in targets
Rex Ryan admitted that Sammy Watkins needs to be targeted more in the receiving game and the Bills make sure this happens on Sunday. Watkins only has 38 targets this season and the most he’s seen in a game is eight targets. On Sunday, Watkins sees at least 10 targets and he makes the most of them.
Ryan noted this week that he expects Marcus Peters on Watkins. If that’s the case, Taylor will target the receiver down the field. Peters has had a strong rookie season but he’s also been credited with allowing seven touchdowns this season. This should be music to Watkins’ ears. On Sunday, expect Watkins to lead the Bills in receiving and possibly find the end zone at least once.
Buffalo runs the ball 25+ times
In a defensive battle, Buffalo will look to limit their mistakes and move the ball on the ground. The Chiefs are fifth in the league in run defense but the Bills have had success running the ball against other highly ranked run defenses.
LeSean McCoy will see the bulk of the carries and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the back go over 100 yards. In two career games versus the Chiefs, McCoy has run for an average of 121 yards on 20 carries. McCoy could carry the Bills to a victory on Sunday.
The defense keeps Travis Kelce in check
Last week, Stephon Gilmore said the Bills had a plan to shutdown Rob Gronkowski and sure enough it worked. The team held Gronkowski to two catches for 37 yards on the evening. One week later, the Bills now faceoff with Kelce, another top five tight end.
The blueprint that the Bills used on Gronkowski should simply be used again on Kelce. Kelce is dealing with an ankle injury that could already slow him down, but taking him out of the game completely will benefit the Bills. The Chiefs lack offensive playmakers and if Buffalo can keep Kelce out of the game, the only legitimate receiving weapon left will be Jeremy Maclin. Look for the Bills to take Kelce, Kansas City’s leading receiver, away from the Chiefs.
View the Wochit video above for Buffalo Football Report’s final score prediction.