The Chiefs are coming into the game with a 7-4 record and on a four-game win streak, however, they are facing a Broncos squad that is in desperation mode with five weeks of regular-season play left. Denver enters Week 13 with a 6-5 record, which is the same record as the Los Angeles Chargers — who they just beat in Week 12 — and the Las Vegas Raiders. But because the Broncos have played one less divisional game than the Chargers and therefore have a worse win percentage within the AFC West (1-1), they are sitting in third place in the division. However, that could change drastically in Week 13.
With much on the line entering their game at Arrowhead, Pro Bowl safety Justin Simmons sent a strong message to the Chiefs prior to Denver’s matchup with the defending AFC champions.
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Simmons: We Have to Find a Way
Following a big win over Chargers — one that kept Denver’s playoff hopes alive — Simmons spoke about the importance of following up their Week 12 division win with another victory in Week 13 against another division opponent.
“We can’t have a ‘Dallas Week,'” Simmons said on Sunday, November 28, via the Broncos official website. “We had a good game against Dallas, and we came back the next week and kind of laid an egg against ‘Philly’ — they played well, too. For us, it means a lot going into next week. It’s going to be a really good game. Another statement game. No matter what happens, we have to find a way to leave Arrowhead with a win.”
Though Simmons’ comments may not seem like a direct message to Kansas City, they are. Why? Because Simmons is letting the Chiefs know that the Broncos are going to give it their all since they know the game at Arrowhead could put an end to their playoff hopes.
Despite being in first place in the division with a chance of gaining the No. 1 seed in the AFC, there’s a lot on the line for Kansas City in Week 13 as well. Because the Chiefs still have four division games left to play this season, and one of the team’s four losses this season came at the hands of the Chargers — who are in second place in the AFC West — a loss to Denver in Week 13 and a win for Los Angeles could have the Chiefs sitting in third place entering Week 14.
That’s why Kansas City needs to come out of its bye week with a sense of urgency.
Chiefs Have Health in Their Favor
With two weeks of rest heading into the Week 13 game, the defending AFC champions will undoubtedly have momentum in their favor health-wise against Denver. Especially because the Broncos’ starting quarterback is dealing with a injury that is worth noting.
Teddy Bridgewater suffered a lower leg contusion in Week 12, which forced him out of the game temporarily before returning to action. However, even though Bridgewater finished the game, head coach Vic Fangio made it clear after the game that the veteran quarterback was not close to fully healthy after returning.
“He toughed it out. He was nowhere near 100 percent,” Fangio said of Bridgewater, according to Aric DiLalla of Broncos.com.
Because of Fangio’s comments, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that Bridgewater plays against the Chiefs below 100% healthy, and due to it being a low leg injury it could impact his mobility. If Bridgewater is cautious and chooses to stay in the pocket because of his injury, that could benefit a Chiefs defense that is coming off a five-sack performance against the Dallas Cowboys.
Time will tell how Bridgewater will handle his injury. If he’s unable to play and Drew Lock is the Week 13 starter, then it will be a long day for Denver, and a great one for Kansas City.
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