There is an argument to be made that last year’s Divisional matchup between the Cleveland Browns and Kansas City Chiefs was the true AFC Championship Game.
The Chiefs came out on top, only to dominate the Buffalo Bills in the actual Championship Game and advance to the Super Bowl.
Browns fans were left wanting more and the NFL schedule-makers gifted a rematch in Week 1 Sunday.
The Browns jumped out to a hot start and held a 22-10 lead.
But Patrick Mahomes will still under center for Kansas City and pulled off some magic, thanks to a few Browns turnovers, to take home the win and assert AFC supremacy.
After watching the first week and seeing the Bills look flat against the Pittsburgh Steelers, it looks like the Browns and Chiefs are destined for a rematch in January.
Toe-To-Toe With The Best
The Browns had the Chiefs on the ropes all day Sunday.
Two mistakes, followed by a desperation mistake, and everything was different.
That game absolutely does not warrant Baker Mayfield hate. #Browns
— Camryn Justice (@camijustice) September 12, 2021
The Browns have now proved twice they can hang with the Chiefs and have a chance to win at the end of the game.
Plenty of teams around the NFL cannot even get that close.
Who else is even on that level?
Bills fans will argue their team is there, but the offense collapsed late against the Steelers.
Josh Allen was taking some big hits and while it is extremely early, they did not come out of the gates looking great.
The one other team perhaps on this top level is the Baltimore Ravens.
But they have their own problems after losing three running backs, and Marcus Peters, before the start of the season.
Monday’s game against Las Vegas will show how the team responds to the adversity.
Never Too Early For Hype
Everyone knows the Chiefs are Super Bowl favorites once again in 2021.
Patrick Mahomes’ record against:
Baker Mayfield 3-0
Lamar Jackson 3-0
Josh Allen 3-0
Amazing. Anybody gonna do something about it? pic.twitter.com/qmiGnfnmDT
— Kyle Brandt (@KyleBrandt) September 12, 2021
The Browns still have a lot to prove because, well, they are the Browns.
Week 1 provided the evidence the team can hang with the best and even win if they just clean up a few mistakes.
One could argue losing this game is just as beneficial as winning.
Imagine how motivated the Chiefs would have been if they lost and everyone claimed the Browns to be the new favorites.
The Browns are in that boat and now have two losses against Kansas City to dwell on.
A loss is not always the worst thing depending on how it happens.
The loss the Browns suffered is nowhere near as bad as what happened to the Tennessee Titans in their embarrassing Week 1 defeat to Arizona.
The NFL has an extra week in 2021 and we won’t know the playoff seedings until January.
Yet as of right now, a Browns-Chiefs rematch seems like the top possible attraction in the AFC Championship Game.