Kansas City Chiefs Quarterback Patrick Mahomes to Miss Week 18

The Kansas City Chiefs are ready to be done with the 2023 season. Head coach Andy Reid revealed during his mid-week media availability that two-time MVP quarterback Patrick Mahomes would be among several starters that will sit in the Chiefs' season finale against the Los Angeles Chargers. The Chiefs wrapped up the AFC West with Week 17's 25-17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals. They're also locked into the AFC's third seed, so they have nothing to gain from a win and nothing to lose with a loss. Given they've played a league-high 17 postseason games since 2018, every extra bit of rest should do their veterans good.

That an eighth-straight AFC West crown feels like a disappointing season for the Chiefs speaks to the absurd standard they've set in recent times. That being said, the perennial contenders have shown some cracks this year. They've scored their fewest points through 16 games since 2014, their 27 turnovers are their most since 2012, and they've failed to win 12 games for the first time since Mahomes took over as the team's starting quarterback in 2018.

All that will be quickly forgotten if the Chiefs can put together another solid postseason. They're in the middle of a streak of five-straight conference championship game appearances, which is the second-longest of all time behind the New England Patriots' eight-year run from 2011 to 2018.  

If the Chiefs make yet another deep playoff run, it will quiet a lot of doubters. But if their offense continues to hold them back as it has much of this year, they may have to consider overhauling their receiving corps. They currently lead the league in dropped passes this season with 40, and eight-time Pro Bowl tight end Travis Kelce is set to turn 35 this October. Without an aggressive infusion of talent, seasons like this one could quickly become the norm for the once-great Chiefs offense.
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