The AFC West champion Kansas Metropolis Chiefs host the Tennessee Titans — who clinched a wild card spot with a win over the Jaguars in Week 17 — to open the NFL playoffs this weekend. The Chiefs hope to get their first playoff win at Arrowhead Stadium since 1994 whereas the Titans are hoping for his or her first playoff win since 2004. The 2 groups each battled their fair proportion of ups and downs all through the season, presenting an fascinating matchup. Listed here are the three issues to observe:
RUN DERRICK RUN
With DeMarco Murray dominated out for the Titans, they might want to rely closely on working again Derrick Henry to be a key piece of the offense. Quarterback Marcus Mariota additionally thrives off play-action and can want Henry to ensure the Chiefs protection respects the run with the intention to open up the passing sport.
The Titans protection ranks fourth within the league in opposition to the run however 25th in opposition to the move. The Chiefs are going to want Alex Smith to air the ball out, one thing he isn’t essentially identified for doing, however he confirmed some skill to take action early within the season and that was when the Chiefs offense was at its finest. Using playmaking weapons comparable to Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce would definitely assist.
ON THE MARC
Marcus Peters can generally be his personal worst enemy — he was suspended by the crew after tossing an official’s flag in a loss to the Jets — however he’s additionally an X-factor for the Chiefs protection. Peters had 5 interceptions and 4 pressured fumbles this season and the Titans come into city with a -Four turnover differential — the worst amongst playoff groups. Peters may play an important function in successful the turnover battle.
Titans: RB DeMarco Murray (knee) is OUT. G Quinton Spain (again) is QUESTIONABLE.
Chiefs: DB Phillip Gaines (elbow) is OUT.