AFC Divisional Round: Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Kansas City Chiefs Preview and Game Insights

The Jacksonville Jaguars have defied the odds since the halfway point of the season after being written off following a rough start. An early season five-game losing skid had most toss away Jacksonville’s chances at 2-5 before they even had their bye week.

That said, ending the year with five straight wins, including two against division rival, the Tennessee Titans, one of which clinched the AFC South in Week 18, was just the start of their comeback story. Nobody could have imagined what Jacksonville was about to do after falling behind 27-0 to the Los Angeles Chargers in last week’s Wild Card game.

Trevor Lawrence led his team all the way back with four touchdown passes en route to the third-biggest comeback in NFL playoff history. Now they have the task of meeting a team that won’t give them the luxury of such a comeback.

The Kansas City Chiefs are the odds-on-favorite to win the Super Bowl at +300 and have the largest spread on this weekend’s board on FanDuel at -8.5 points. KC comes in well-rested off the bye week to welcome the Jags to a place the Chiefs don’t lose often.

KC’s one home defeat this season is tied for the fewest in the league, and they sport a 20-5 record at Arrowhead over the past three years. They’ve won ten of their past eleven games, including a 27-17 win over these very same Jags.

The game wasn’t quite as close as the scoreboard indicated as Lawrence threw a touchdown pass to cut the lead to ten with five minutes remaining. While Jacksonville is a substantial dog, they are a plucky bunch and should keep this game competitive against the AFC’s top team.

Jacksonville Jaguars Team & Player Insights:

  • The Jaguars are 7-5 (.583) when underdogs this season, third-best.
  • The Jaguars are undefeated (3-0) when tied at the end of the first quarter since the 2021 season, tied for best in the NFL.
  • The Jaguars are 4-2 (.667) vs. top ten run defenses this season,  ninth-best in the NFL.
  • Trevor Lawrence has 3.1 TDs per interception (25/8) this season, tied for fifth-best of qualified quarterbacks. The Chiefs have allowed 3.0 TD passes per interception (33/11), the fourth-worst in NFL.

Kansas City Chiefs Team & Player Insights:

  • The Chiefs have a third down conversion rate of 49.0% this season, second-best in the NFL, while the Jaguars have allowed a third down conversion rate of 43.4% this season, fourth-worst in the NFL.
  • Chiefs TEs have 103.8 receiving yards per game this season, the best in the NFL. The Jaguars have allowed an average of 62.7 receiving yards per game to TEs this season, the fourth-worst in the NFL.
  • Patrick Mahomes has thrown for 5,247 passing yards in 17 games (308.6 YPG) this season, the best of qualified quarterbacks. The Jaguars have allowed 238.5 passing yards per game this season, the fifth-worst in the NFL.
  • The Chiefs have a third down conversion rate of 43% on third and ten-plus yards to go this season, the best in the NFL.