It’s OK to Say It, Lions Fans — Detroit Will Beat the Chiefs in NFL Opener
With the news of star tight end Travis Kelce injuring his knee in practice on Tuesday, it's time to say it and own it.
The Lions are winning Thursday night in Kansas City.
It sounds like Kelce avoided any serious damage to his knee. Why would the Chiefs rush him back onto the field and risk something severe? Instead, they'll sit him, effectively giving him nearly two weeks to recover before their Week 2 game.
The Lions will still have their hands full with Patrick Mahomes. But can you name Kansas City's top target not named Travis Kelce? The Chiefs simply do not have elite playmakers at the skill positions beyond their All Pro tight end. Kelce's absence is a huge win for Detroit.
Then there's the matter of disgruntled pass rusher Chris Jones, who's been holding out for a bigger, better deal. Jones is far and away the Chiefs' best defensive lineman, having racked up 15.5 sacks last season. The next-closest pass rusher for Kansas City had 6.
The Chiefs and Jones are reportedly $9.5 million apart in negotiations. Kansas City has offered a two-year, fully guaranteed deal worth $54.5 million, but Jones wants that number to be $64 million.
Jones broke his silence on Wednesday, speaking to the media while attending a charity event.
I can’t really talk about it. Hopefully, we can get something worked out... I can play right now.
...Opinions are like but**oles. Everyone’s got one and they all stink…you can’t make everyone happy… I’m just asking for a raise.
That $9.5 million difference isn't likely to be remedied literally overnight. But even in the extremely unlikely event that the Chiefs and Jones can work it out before Thursday's kick off, it's doubtful Jones would take the field versus the Lions.
Jones and Kelce are probably Kansas City's best two players outside of Mahomes. Not having either available is a massive issue for the Chiefs, especially on defense since they'll be going up against one of the best offensive lines in football in the Lions.
Lions fans should be feeling confident. Extremely confident now. You just know that Dan Campbell was already going to have these guys ready to meet the moment against a full complement of Chiefs. Now with these recent developments, it's OK to just come out and say it — the Lions are winning in Kansas City on Thursday.
But don't just take my word for it. Follow the money. The point spread for this game has moved two points in the Lions' direction in the 24 hours since Kelce's injury first made headlines.