The Chiefs will once again be strong favorites for the AFC title when they navigate their 2021 NFL schedule. Kansas City, a Super Bowl 55 runner-up against Tampa Bay after winning Super Bowl 54 over San Francisco, is coming off a season of 14-2, his best record to date with coach Andy Reid.
Since Reid has led the team, the Chiefs have made the playoffs in seven of eight seasons. They have won the AFC West five times in a row.
There are all expectations, with Patrick Mahomes giving them a high floor, the Chiefs will remain in first place, and the Chargers will be their closest rivals. Here’s a full breakdown of the Chiefs’ schedule for 2021, including dates, start times, and analysis for all 17 games.
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2021 Kansas City Chiefs Schedule
The Chiefs open the season at home against the Browns on September 12, a 4:25 ET game on CBS. The rest of the program will be released on Wednesday, May 12 at 8 pm ET. These are the teams that are scheduled to play during the 2021 NFL season.
HOME: Denver Broncos, Los Angeles Chargers, Las Vegas Raiders, Pittsburgh Steelers, Cleveland Browns, Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Green Bay Packers
OUTSIDE: Denver Broncos, Los Angeles Chargers, Las Vegas Raiders, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Washington Football Team, Philadelphia Eagles, Tennessee Titans
The Chiefs have their regular manageable group of six divisional games. The league’s rotation prepares them to play across the entire AFC North and NFC East as well.
They will also play with two other first-place teams from the conference, the Bills and the Titans. The bonus showdown with the increase to 17 games gives them a marquee reunion with the Packers, reigning champions of the NFC North. The Chiefs did not repeat, but they continue to top the “hunted” list.
MORE: Schedule strength for all 32 teams in 2021
Boss schedule force
The Chiefs’ opponents had a combined winning percentage of .511 (138-132-2) last season. That ties them for the 11th-toughest spot with the Seahawks.
In the AFC alone, they attract five playoff teams from last season, including the Steelers, Ravens and Browns of the NFC North. The NFC Packers and Washington have two more. The NFC East should be better too, with the Cowboys, Giants and Eagles improved in different ways. The rest of the AFC West is weak relative to all of that.
Tougher tests: The Packers, Bills and Browns will present big challenges at home at Arrowhead Stadium. Buffalo and Cleveland were Kansas City’s two most recent opponents in the AFC playoffs at the same spot. Dallas, with its offense, and Pittsburgh, with its defense, also visit, giving little laps to the Chiefs.
The Chiefs’ route schedule is marked by the Titans and Ravens and features three trips to the East Coast.
Major breaks: The Chiefs don’t have many, but they should take advantage of the Giants, Eagles and Washington. They should also feel more confident about going back to sweep the Raiders and Broncos, teams Mahomes owns.
Bottom line: The Chiefs won’t flinch from this loaded list. Mahomes will keep the offense humming, and also kept defensive strengths with fewer weaknesses. Mahomes remains the NFL’s main attraction, and there will be plenty of fun dueling partners for him, including Aaron Rodgers, Josh Allen, Lamar Jackson, Justin Herbert, Baker Mayfield, and Joe Burrow.
The Chiefs will slide a little on the schedule alone, but will be well-positioned to repeat as the AFC’s No. 1 seed after easily extending his divisional career.
Record prediction: 13-4
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.