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Bills vs. Chiefs: 7 things to watch for during divisional round

The Buffalo Bills continue their playoff journey with a matchup at home against the Kansas City Chiefs at Highmark Stadium.

All week, topics and storylines have been discussed ahead of these two familiar AFC opponents facing off.

In the end, regardless of what is said by players, coaches, media outlets and fans, it always comes down to what unfolds on the field in the NFL.

And once the battle arrives, there will be a few particular things to keep in mind to look out for.

With that, are five things to watch for during Sunday’s Bills (11-6) and Chiefs (11-6) AFC divisional round matchup:

Mahomes vs. Bills Mafia

(Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)
(Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)

The Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes have played a lot of postseason games. However, it’s his first-ever road contest in the playoffs… and he’ll be playing it in front of Bills Mafia. Every other time it has always been at home or a neutral site, aka the Super Bowl.

That’s going to be highlighted during the leadup to kickoff for good reason. Does that make a big difference for Kansas City?

Injury bug

(Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images)
(Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images)

Over the past two weeks, the Bills have seen multiple players added to their injury report. The more starters that can play, the better.

Names to watch leading up to Sunday include:

  • LB Terrel Bernard (ankle)

  • LB Tyrel Dodson (shoulder)

  • LB Baylon Spector (back)

  • WR Gabe Davis (knee)

  • CB Rasul Douglas (knee)

  • CB Christian Benford (knee)

Weather again

( Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports)
( Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports)

This week’s forecast is calling for more to fall in the days leading up to kickoff. As of now, during the contest, it might be clear… but you never know. Bills Wire will provide updates as the week progresses.

Players playing this time

(Credit: Patrick Breen/The Republic via USA TODAY Sports)
(Credit: Patrick Breen/The Republic via USA TODAY Sports)

Currently the Bills have the longer injury report than the Chiefs. But within the same ballpark are the players that Kansas City will have in the lineup this time around.

During Buffalo’s 20-17 win in KC in Week 14, two important Chiefs players did not play: Starting running back Isiah Pacheco and top linebacker Drue Tranquill.

How much of a difference do those two make this time around?

A motivated bunch

(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

The Bills beat the Chiefs before but an offside penalty against Kansas City receiver Kadarius Toney played a huge part. That’s going to make the Chiefs more than motivated heading into Orchard Park.

A fast start

(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

And speaking of that, what could quel that? A fast start by the Bills, much like the one the Bills got off to when they beat the Chiefs. Buffalo held on for the win, but getting out to a 14-0 lead is always huge.

Doing it again could make all the difference.

Josh & Pat raising their games

(Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports)
(Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports)

It always seems like Mahomes and Josh Allen raise their game against one another. Everyone in the NFL world is going to be watching and hoping for this to happen.

Story originally appeared on Bills Wire