6 biggest games on Chiefs’ 2023 schedule

As the defending Super Bowl champions, the Kansas City Chiefs will naturally play in a number of big games in 2023.

The Chiefs are a marquee game for each of their opponents and have to take everybody’s best shot every week. 2023 will be no exception as Kansas City will be the only NFL game on TV eight different times. If the Chiefs are going to be the AFC’s No. 1 seed for the second straight year, they will definitely have earned it.

Let’s take a look at the six biggest games on the Chiefs’ 2023 schedule.

No. 6: Week 11 vs. Philadelphia Eagles

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This Super Bowl LVII rematch will be under the lights at Arrowhead Stadium on “Monday Night Football.” The Chiefs will be coming off a bye week, which is always a big advantage, but the Eagles will also be coming off of a bye week. Philadelphia will be pumped for this game as they try to avenge their SB loss. They have perhaps the deepest roster in the NFL and appear poised to make another championship run.

Andy Reid could be the difference in this game as he has dominated the Eagles since leaving them in 2012, with a perfect 4-0 record against his former team. The difference is that the Eagles will have a pair of new coordinators who should be up to speed by Week 11.

This game could certainly be a Super Bowl LVIII preview and will have a big game atmosphere. However, it ultimately wouldn’t be a huge blow if the Chiefs lost this game since the Eagles are an NFC team and it’s a midseason game.

No. 5: Week 18 @ Los Angeles Chargers

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The Chiefs and Chargers have played some nail-biters over the last few years. Five of their last seven matchups have been decided by one possession. The Chargers have had a loaded roster for the last couple of years now, but they have routinely underachieved.

At the least, however, they’ll be in the thick of the playoff picture. A loss in the final week of the season to L.A. could be a big blow. If the Chargers finally fulfill their potential, this game could be for the AFC West title. Even if the Chiefs have the West already locked up, they could still be competing to be the No. 1 seed in the AFC in the final week of the season.

No. 4: Week 4 @ New York Jets

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Will we finally get the Patrick Mahomes-Aaron Rodgers quarterback matchup that has eluded us all these years? If we do, it should be a good one. Mahomes and Rodgers have won four of the last five AP NFL MVP awards.

At 39 years old, some expect Rodgers’ performance to drop off, but a change of scenery might be just what he needs. The Jets have a nice roster surrounding Rodgers, including the No. 4 total defense from last season. After winning seven games in 2022, the addition of Rodgers should be enough to at least get into the playoff picture.

NY could end up being a legitimate contender in the AFC, so owning the tiebreaker over them would be important. This game being on Sunday Night Football is the cherry on top of what could be one of the best games of the season.

No. 3: Week 14 vs. Buffalo Bills

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The Chiefs and Bills will meet for the fourth-straight time in the regular season and the sixth time overall during that span. This has become one of the best rivalries in the league, with K.C. having a 3-2 edge since 2020 (including the postseason). Like with the Jets, the most important factor in winning this game will be seeding.

And since this game is being played in December, it will also be important for momentum heading into the postseason. The Chiefs have survived losing to the Bills each of the last two seasons, so a loss here wouldn’t be the end of the world. Buffalo is looking to get over the hump in 2023 after back-to-back disappointing losses in the AFC divisional round.

No. 2: Week 9 vs. Miami Dolphins

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This game will of course be played in Frankfurt, Germany and will be right before the Chiefs’ bye week. The Dolphins’ offense became one of the most explosive units in the league last season, finishing sixth in total offense despite starting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa missing four games.

Receivers Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle both ranked in the top 10 in receiving yards in 2022. Speaking of Hill, this will be his first game against the Chiefs since leaving them after the 2021 season. It is a bit disappointing that this game won’t be played at Arrowhead, but the interactions and banter between Hill and the Chiefs should be fun regardless.

If Tagovailoa can stay healthy, Miami could take another step forward in 2023 and be major contenders in the AFC. This game will be important for seeding and could easily turn into one of the best offensive shootouts of the season.

No. 1: Week 17 vs. Cincinnati Bengals

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The Bengals are definitely the Chiefs’ top rival nowadays. Each of their last four matchups has been decided by three points. The bad blood between the two teams has intensified between each matchup.

Cincinnati has won three of the last four, but K.C. got off the schneid in last season’s AFC Championship Game. Joe Burrow and Mahomes are perhaps not only the top two quarterbacks in the AFC, but the top two quarterbacks in the entire league. Both teams have very complete rosters and should be the top two favorites to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl.

The loser of this game could have to travel to other’s home turf to play in a playoff game. It will also be fun to watch former Chiefs and now current Bengals’ left tackle Orlando Brown Jr. take on the K.C. pass rush.

Story originally appeared on Chiefs Wire