First-month game at Baltimore. Sound familiar?
The Chiefs and Ravens met at M&T Bank Stadium in September last year, and it was one of the most impressive victories of the season for Kansas City.
Patrick Mahomes tossed creative touchdown passes to a couple of players no longer on the team: fullback Anthony Sherman and tackle Eric Fisher. You recall “Smoked Sausage” and “Catch and Release,” no doubt. And the Chiefs’ top receiver in that game is not only gone, he plays for the opponent. Sammy Watkins, who now wears Baltimore’s purple, had seven catches.
The Chiefs won 34-20 and stunningly out-gained the Ravens in total yards 517-228. Touchdowns on four of their first five possessions made it a Chiefs rout. It also made Andy Reid 4-0 as Chiefs coach against Ravens coach (and former Reid protege) John Harbaugh.
So what happens this time, this weekend, on Sunday Night Football?
The Ravens are dealing with a rash of injuries. Eight players, including six starters, have been placed on injured reserve in the last three weeks. Former Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters is part of that list. Not on the list is All-Pro left tackle Ronnie Stanley, who didn’t practice Thursday because of an ankle injury. His status is unknown for Sunday.
Both teams are coming off games that were decided in the final minutes, with the Chiefs rallying from a nine-point fourth-quarter deficit to defeat the Cleveland Browns and the Ravens falling at Las Vegas in overtime.
Even with Baltimore’s crowded injury list, we expect this game to be closer than last year’s. But in the end we think the Chiefs have too much offense to lose to the Ravens.
Kickoff: 7:20 p.m. (Central)
TV/radio: NBC (Channel 41), WDAF (106.5 FM)
Line: Chiefs by 3 1/2
Blair Kerkhoff’s prediction: Chiefs, 31-27