NFL is not making Chiefs' Super Bowl three-peat quest easy with first two opponents

There are certainly pros and cons to the Kansas City Chiefs' first two games of the NFL season.
Chris Jones, Kansas City Chiefs, Jonah Williams, Cincinnati Bengals
Chris Jones, Kansas City Chiefs, Jonah Williams, Cincinnati Bengals / Ryan Kang/GettyImages

With the NFL schedule release coming out in earnest later this week, we now know who the two-time defending Super Bowl Kansas City Chiefs will be playing right out of the gate. They will open Week 1 on Thursday night vs. the AFC North champion Baltimore Ravens, a team the Chiefs faced on the road in last year's AFC Championship Game. As if that was not enough, look at who they play Week 2.

Yes, Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals will be coming to Arrowhead 10 days later on Sept. 15 for CBS' top-billing in Week 2. Although the Bengals failed to reach the playoffs last year, they have been a thorn in the Chiefs' side whenever Burrow has been healthy. Of course, the Chiefs will be getting both AFC North contenders at home, as well as getting Burrow and the Bengals on 10 days rest, too...

So I can kind of see how either side of the argument could be made on if the NFL actually made it tougher for the Chiefs out of the gate. We know the Ravens should be good, but we aren't certain of that with the Bengals. Because both are at home with 10 days between them, Kansas City should win both. Of course, there is plenty of time to overcome a tough loss to start the season to either team.

At the end of the day, the NFL is a television product, and don't you ever forget about that one fact!

So what are the Chiefs' chances of pulling off the unprecedented Super Bowl three-peat this season?

Kansas City Chiefs will face Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals to start

Right now, I have the Chiefs as maybe one of four or five playoff locks, along with Baltimore, Detroit and San Francisco, maybe one other team. Other teams who are almost locks include Buffalo, Houston and Green Bay. As for Cincinnati, the Bengals should be a playoff team if all goes according to plan. I sincerely doubt they are going to finish in last place in the deep AFC North division again.

And that right there is a huge component in this. Cincinnati will play arguably the easiest schedule of any realistic playoff contender in the AFC this season. They will have to face the likes of the Los Angeles Chargers, New England Patriots and Tennessee Titans in terms of competitive balance. The Chiefs and Ravens will have to play Buffalo and Houston and each other after being first-place teams.

Frankly, as long as the Chiefs win somewhere around 12 or 13 games, everything they could have ever wanted and hoped for will be right in front of them. I would say that as a top-three seed in the AFC, Kansas City has enough positive momentum going in its direction that it could come out of the conference to face someone like Detroit, San Francisco or even Green Bay down in New Orleans.

For now, we have two of the biggest games of the Chiefs' season right in front of us from the start.

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