For many, the Kansas City Chiefs’ Week 11 matchup versus the Philadelphia Eagles is a rematch of last year’s Super Bowl. The Chiefs came out of that matchup victorious, narrowly edging the Eagles 38-35, perhaps leaving Philly with more to prove. Not everyone is buying into that narrative, though.
“I don’t buy into Super Bowl revenge games,” Eagles center Jason Kelce said via Jori Epstein of Yahoo Sports on November 18. “Nothing that goes out there and happens on Monday night is going to at all change or make different what happened last year.”
Jason Kelce Downplays Chiefs-Eagles as Super Bowl Rematch
Chiefs, Eagles are Different Teams
The Eagles enter the contest with the better record at 8-1 to the Chiefs’ 7-2 mark. They also boast the NFL’s fifth-best scoring offense whereas the Chiefs check in at an uncharacteristic 13th.
Kansas City has ranked no lower than sixth in scoring in each of the last six seasons. They have finished outside of the top 10 just two times since Andy Reid took over in 2013 with four top-five finishes in the last five seasons. But this season has been markedly different from injuries to inconsistency.
The Chiefs do have the defensive edge, however, leading the way in scoring while the Eagles rank 18th. Kansas City’s pass rush also figures to play a significant role once again with Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts dealing with a balky knee before the bye week.
He says he’s feeling fine. But the Chiefs’ pass rush should certainly test that.
Chiefs Planning for ‘Brotherly Shove’
The Chiefs will get another chance to be the team that figures out how to shut down the “Brotherly Shove” (or “Tush Push”), the Eagles’ ace-in-the-hole play that has three teammates push Hurts on a sneak for short to-go situations. Philadelphia has also incorporated handoffs to the running backs off of it making it even more of a challenge to diagnose and defend against.
“They’re so good at it,” Chiefs defense lineman Chris Jones said, per PJ Green of KSNT.com on November 18. “Unfortunately we haven’t watched any rugby style of defense yet but we’ll figure something out.”
The Kelce brothers had some fun discussing ways to stop the play during the “New Heights” podcast on November 17.
— Maryna Oleksina (@maryna_oleksina) November 16, 2023
Per Green, the play has an 84% success rate this season, down from 90% last season.
Chiefs Facing Banged-Up Eagles Team
It’s not just Hurts’ knee that bears monitoring. The Eagles are also expected to be without star tight end Dallas Goedert who suffered a fractured forearm last week. Goedert is third on the team in targets, receptions, and yards.
Conversely, the Chiefs have a clean bill of health.
Here's Friday's injury report for the Chiefs and Eagles. pic.twitter.com/yZQ6ivG38R
— Matt McMullen (@KCChiefs_Matt) November 17, 2023
The NFL is oftentimes a battle of attrition. The Chiefs know that full well, falling early in the season while they were missing key pieces in Jones and Kelce. Their nine-point blunder against the Denver Broncos is one of just two sub-20-point performances since Week 2, and they scored 19 points in the other one.
Anything can happen on any given Sunday. But this game is setting up in the Chiefs’ favor even in a season that has seen them face so many questions despite their record.
Main Photo: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports