We already know coming into the 2021 NFL season that the Kansas City Chiefs are the No. 1 contender in the AFC.
The Chiefs have made it to back-to-back Super Bowls and are expected to make it there again this year, but they could have a fight on their hands from some very hungry teams.
These teams could make the Chiefs run to the Super Bowl harder than expected.
The Dolphins were one game away from making the playoffs last season, and that missing win almost came against the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.
Behind rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, the Dolphins only lost to the Chiefs 33-27. Now, Miami is putting the pieces together to make a serious run in the AFC.
It was well known that ex-offensive coordinator Chan Gailey, wouldn’t turn Tua and the offense loose at times, according to the Miami Herald, but that should change this year.
The Dolphins brought in rookie wide receiver Jaylen Waddle from Alabama, and now that Tagovailoa is starting to feel comfortable in the offense, the pieces may come together. They already have a top-tier defense that kept them in games last year. Now, if their offense can catch up, they could make some serious noise in the AFC.
The Titans always seem to be a hard out in the AFC playoffs. They come close every year, but they always fall short. This year may be different. To prove they are serious about making a deeper playoff run, they traded for former Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones.
Jones made it perfectly clear to the Falcons that if they were to trade him, he wanted to go to a Super Bowl contender, and the Titans are that team.
Now that quarterback Ryan Tannehill can do more than hand the ball off to Derrick Henry, the Titans are more than just a hard out in the AFC playoffs; they are now serious contenders.
The one team that should scare the Chiefs most is the Buffalo Bills. They are a good team that’s hungry to make it back to their first Super Bowl in almost 30 years.
The pieces are in place for the Bills to make a run at the Chiefs again in the AFC but will they be enough? Last season, the Chiefs were too much on offense, and the Bills didn’t have enough on offense themselves to make a serious comeback in the AFC Championship Game. Quarterback Josh Allen and the Bills offense are tough to beat, especially when they don’t beat themselves.
It’s not only about having enough on offense but also about having a good enough defense to make plays when they are needed.
The Bills also have to contend with hungry teams within their own division such as the Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots, both of whom want to knock them off.
The Chiefs are still the team to beat in the AFC, but they better watch their backs because they are in for a serious challenge, not only from those teams but also from more experienced teams like the Baltimore Ravens, the Pittsburgh Steelers, and, yes, even the Cleveland Browns. They are all ready to take the next step in knocking off the reigning kings of the AFC.