Willis McGahee runs against the Kansas City Chiefs. (Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE)

Looking Ahead to Week 17: Chiefs at Broncos

Now that things have settled down a bit after the draft, let’s get back to looking ahead at the Broncos 2012 schedule. We will continue to take a game-by-game look at the season that the team has in front of them. 

Just like last season, the last game of the Broncos regular season takes place at home against the Kansas City Chiefs. Last January, the Chiefs won 7-3, but the Broncos got some help within the AFC West to make the playoffs.

This game could be very relevant not so much in terms of making the playoffs, but more so in securing home field advantage.

The Chiefs, who were hampered by injuries last season, ranked 31st on offense (15th in rushing and 25th in passing). On defense, they were 12th in points allowed (26th in rush defense and 6th in pass defense).

Free agency saw the Chiefs bring in some good talent in former Broncos Peyton Hillis and Brady Quinn. The team also picked up tight end Kevin Boss and offensive tackle Eric Winston. The Chiefs’ backfield is one to be frightened of.

The Chiefs used the draft to stack their lines. They picked the numbers King, DT Dontari Poe, with their first round pick (11th overall). Then it was two guards (Jeff Allen and Donald Stephenson) to beef up the offensive line.

Out of all the teams in the AFC West, the Chiefs appear to be the sleeper team. Should they stay healthy, they could challenge the Broncos in a big way.

Early Prediction: Broncos – 27 Chiefs – 21.

Chiefs Leaders in 2011:

Matt Cassel – 160-for-269 (59.5%), 1,713 passing yards, TDs, 9 INTs

Jackie Battle – 597 yards (39.8 per game), 2 TDs

Dwayne Bowe – 81 receptions, 1,159 yards, 5 TDs, 1 fumbles

Derrick Johnson – 131 tackles

Brandon Flowers, Brandon Carr – 4 INTs each

Tamba Hali – 12 sacks

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Tags: Denver Broncos Kansas City Chiefs Peyton Hillis

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