The 3rd Man In

Packers vs. Chiefs: Preview, Prediction

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The Packers are surging at the right time and poised to earn a playoff birth after victories over the Los Angeles Chargers and Detroit Lions. 

On Sunday, the Packers (5-6) face the Kansas City Chiefs (8-3) at Lambeau Field. While the Chiefs are talented, they aren’t unbeatable, and in recent weeks, the Packers have displayed an ability to beat quality teams.

Quarterback Jordan Love has played well of late, playing a key role in the Packers’ winning three of their last four games. He thrived against the Lions last week and has thrown five touchdowns and zero interceptions in the last two weeks. Love has the chance to make a statement and solidify himself as the Packers’ quarterback of the future with a strong showing Sunday.

Love’s performance will be important on Sunday. But the difference in the game will be the Packers’ defense against the Chiefs’ offense. The Packers forced Lions QB Jared Goff to commit three turnovers last week in large part due to the pressure they generated. 

This season, Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes has nine interceptions and two fumbles. He has 14 turnover-worthy plays, ranking ninth-most among quarterbacks. It also is more than Jordan Love (11). Mahomes is a little turnover-prone this year, and if the Packers want to win, they’ll need to pressure him and force him to make bad decisions.

The Chiefs also have not found a consistent threat in the passing game after tight end Travis Kelce. Rashee Rice is the second option, but he isn’t a difference-maker. If the Packers can prevent Mahomes from going consistently to Kelce or Rice, the Chiefs’ offensive will be in trouble.

Sunday’s contest is a great test for the Packers. Regardless of the result, the Packers have an easy schedule ahead and are poised to make the playoffs. But the Packers can make a statement against the Chiefs. The Packers are trending up after the last two weeks and can defeat the Chiefs.

Prediction: Packers 27, Chiefs 24

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