It was a disappointing game for Kansas City Chiefs Fans, as they watched their team almost pull off a comeback, only to fall short, because of a holding penalty. Most Chiefs fans left an icy Arrowhead stadium feeling defeated, and frustrated, that a bright season had to end in the divisional round. However, most Chiefs fans have experience this same feeling before. Whether it was when the Chiefs lost to the Colts during the 2013-14 wild-card weekend, or the lost in the 1993-94 conference championship with Joe Montana. This is not the first time the Chiefs have come up short in the playoffs.
On the other sideline is a very different story. The Steelers may not have won the Super Bowl since 2008, but they have a franchise that has consistently been a team that has been victorious. When you consider that Ben Roethlisberger has lifted the Lombardi Trophy twice, and almost a third time, the Steelers have had their share of victories over the years, and that did not change on Sunday night’s playoff game where the Steelers played versus the Chiefs.
Why the Pittsburgh Steelers won…
· Chris Boswell proved himself to be a capable kicker Sunday night. Boswell kicked a record six field goals, lifting a Steelers team (that kept stalling in the red zone) to a close victory. Boswell has played in four postseason games, and has made 14-for-14 field goals in that span.
· Le’Veon Bell repeatedly shows why he is the center piece in a dynamic Steelers offense. Bell rushed for 170 yards on 30 carries. Bell showcased his “Wait-and-See” running style, which will most likely be adopted by schools across the country. Even though Bell did not step into the end zone, he proved vital for the Steelers to come out of a cold Arrowhead victorious.
· Ben Roethlisberger had 224 passing yards, a 64.5% completion rate, and a pick. Big Ben’s statistics were worse on Sunday than his averages for the season. Big Ben averaged 272 Yards/Game, a 64.4% Completion rate and a 2.23 touchdowns to each interception this regular season, which is better than he performed in this game. The Steelers have found ways to win without Big Ben having to accomplish a lot every game.
Why the Kansas City Chiefs lost…
· It would be easy to blame the 18-16 lost on Alex Smith, but Smith is not why the Chiefs lost. Yes, he may not throw the ball 50 yards every throw, but the Chiefs have won games with Smith. The Chiefs have won games with Smith’s playing style, so winning this game was very achievable for the Chiefs. What contributed to the Chiefs losing this game was the receivers. Travis Kelce dropped the ball, Jeremy Maclin dropped the ball, everyone was dropping the ball. For a team to advance in the playoffs, you must have someone who can consistently catch the ball.
· For the Kansas City Chiefs to come out with a win, they would have had to use the special teams as their top weapon. It hurt the Chiefs that they only got a single punt in the whole game, and that the Steelers punted out of bounds. They had a tough time returning the ball. The Chiefs returned the ball five times, and averaged less than 20 yards per return.
· The Chiefs defense is the best in the league in takeaways. The Chiefs thrive on the mistakes on the other team. Yet, they lost the turnover battle Sunday night. Eric Berry’s pick in the end zone was an amazing play, but their defense just could not make Big Ben or Bell turnover the ball. The Chiefs had a -1 turnover differential, which is a big part of why they could not pull off a win.
What do you think? Comment below on why you believe the game resulted this way.