The Denver Broncos have not beaten the Kansas City Chiefs since 2015, and the 2023 NFL season seems to be a great year to end that massive losing streak. Well, the Denver Broncos might be in a very encouraging position to finally beat the Chiefs. Besides the Broncos trading for Sean Payton and the team making solid roster improvements, the Chiefs themselves might be without their best defensive player.
Chris Jones is arguably the best defensive tackle in the NFL and is currently holding out from the Chiefs as he seeks a new contract extension. Jones' current deal has one year left and is worth $20 million per season. According to various reports, Chris Jones wants a new deal that is worth close to what Aaron Donald is making.
Donald's contract is worth a whopping $31.6 million per season. Jones seems to want to hit that $30 million per year mark, and honestly, he has a great argument for hitting that number. Jones is recently 29 years old and just came off the best year of his career in 20922, earning a Pro Bowl and All-Pro nod. He finished with four passes defended, two forced fumbles, 15.5 sacks, 17 tackles for loss, and 29 QB hits.
Mind you, this would be elite production from a pure EDGE rusher, but the fact that Chris Jones is an interior defensive lineman makes this even more impressive. He's made the Pro Bowl in four straight seasons and played all 17 games last year for the Kansas City Chiefs. Well, even though Denver's interior offensive line is improved with the addition of Ben Powers and an improved Lloyd Cushenberry, Chris Jones is still a handful to deal with.
Well, on Twitter, or X, whatever you prefer to call it, Jones was asked when he plans on returning to the Chiefs, and here was his response:
Well, well, well, look what we have here. According to Jones himself, he isn't going to show up until week eight, and the Denver Broncos have their first matchup with the Kansas City Chiefs during week six, so, if Jones is going to be a man of his word, the Broncos won't have to deal with him during week six. This would be a massive, massive absence for the middle of the Chiefs' defense, which has never really been great during the Patrick Mahomes era.
Not having Chris Jones in the middle of that defense will force other, lesser-known players to step up and would surely put more pressure on the offense. We should all be hoping, in all honesty, that Chris Jones decides to hold out at least this long. Any advantage the Broncos can get, right?