Predicting the 2024 NFL Season Opener: Who Will Face the Kansas City Chiefs?

Predicting the 2024 NFL Season Opener: Who Will Face the Kansas City Chiefs?

The NFL is getting used to the Kansas City Chiefs winning Super Bowls, and as a result, it is getting used to the Chiefs playing the first game of the NFL season.

The Chiefs will host the opening game of the NFL regular season for the third time in five years, a reward each reigning champion enjoys. And once again, we’re wondering which opponent the Chiefs will get. The NFL typically tries to get a marquee opponent to face the champs and get the season going.

We know the eight candidates for opening night, since we have known each team’s opponents for the 2024 season for months. Here is a guess at who will kick off the season at Kansas City:

There wouldn’t be a lot of buzz for any of these teams. The Buccaneers would be the best of the group but … nah. The only reason any of these three teams would end up on opening night is the NFL knows that we’re all going to be watching even if Liberty North High School is the opponent.

Who will Travis Kelce and the Kansas City Chiefs face on opening night? (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File)

It’s rare for the NFL to make the opening game a divisional contest. The last time that happened was 2012 when the Dallas Cowboys played the New York Giants. The only other time was 2008, also with the Giants. Since we don’t have to worry about the NFL’s infatuation with the NFC East for this year’s opening game, it seems unlikely they’d match up the Chiefs with an AFC West opponent. Maybe Jim Harbaugh’s debut with the Chargers or the Raiders having been the last team to beat the Chiefs (and bragging a bit about it) might move the needle. But it seems unlikely.

The NFL likes to give us a good game in the opener, but not too good. Again, we’re watching no matter what. Last season, games against the Bills or Bengals would have been spicier than Lions-Chiefs, but those Bills and Bengals games ended up getting prime real estate for the networks in the late Sunday afternoon slot. The best possible game for this season’s opener might be an AFC championship game rematch with the Ravens, but you’ll probably see that one in prime time this fall.

The Texans are going to get plenty of prime-time love from the schedule makers this season. C.J. Stroud is an instant star and the addition of Stefon Diggs makes the Texans one of the NFL’s most watchable teams. Stroud vs. Patrick Mahomes would be great theater. If this ends up being the choice, nobody would complain. It would probably be a great game, too.

The Bengals didn’t have a great season in 2023, but a lot of that had to do with Joe Burrow’s injury. With Burrow back, we can crank the Bengals-Chiefs rivalry back up. Because the Bengals weren’t a big factor last season, we might forget the heat from the Chiefs-Bengals playoff battles, the “Burrowhead” talk and Travis Kelce calling the mayor of Cincinnati a “jabroni” after Kansas City beat the Bengals in an AFC championship game. There will also be interest in seeing how Burrow looks after a wrist injury ended his season last November. Unless there’s concern that Burrow might not be ready — and there doesn’t seem to be much worry over that — this seems like an easy pick for the NFL. Though, the league has a few good candidates for opening night.

2024-05-06 12:33:48
#Chiefs #face #NFL #season #opener #Lets #candidates

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *