Quarterback Josh Allen has been one of the biggest surprises of the NFL season. The Bills were expected to compete in the AFC East while leaning on a defense that ranked second in the NFL in 2019. They were not expected to field the type of offense that broke 30 points in consecutive wins over the Miami Dolphins, Los Angeles Rams and Las Vegas Raiders.
But Allen has evolved from one of the league’s least-accurate passers in his first two seasons to completing 69.3 percent of his passes through the first five games. That newfound precision combined with his massive arm has led to the kind of production prompting whispers of an MVP candidacy.
On Monday, he’ll take on another more obvious MVP candidate and perhaps the only quarterback in the league who can compete with him in a long-ball contest in Patrick Mahomes.
Mahomes’ Chiefs, like Allen’s Bills, are fresh off their first loss of the season, a 40-32 defeat on Sunday to the Las Vegas Raiders. There’s less concern around the Chiefs, who face a softer schedule moving forward and weren’t beaten soundly in Week 5 like the Bills were.
But Monday’s matchup is key for both teams and could ultimately determine playoff positioning.
Rich get richer in Kansas City
The Chiefs have mostly picked up where they left off in their Super Bowl run. Mahomes is averaging 295 passing yards per game while throwing 13 touchdowns against one interception for the league’s third-ranked offense. And Kansas City just added another weapon in signing running back Le’Veon Bell after he was discarded from a discordant run with the New York Jets.
Since Bell signed on Thursday, he will not play in Monday’s game due to strict COVID-19 protocols. He needs six days of negative COVID-19 tests before he is able to practice.
However, the 28-year-old two-time All-Pro will provide another dynamic option for the Kansas City offense, maybe even in time for the Chiefs’ Nov. 1 game against the Jets.
Even without Bell, the Chiefs should be expected to keep on the gas following their first loss of the season.