The NFL’s schedule makers gave a boost to the Chiefs’ chances of repeating.
That’s because the Chiefs, to a greater extent than any team in the league, will be playing with more rest than their opponents.
As calculated by Lee Sharpe, the Chiefs have an advantage over their opponents of 10 net rest days over the course of the season. That’s the most in the NFL.
The Chiefs play on Thursday in Week One and then play on Sunday in Week Two. Their Week Two opponent, the Chargers, play on Sunday in Week One. That means the Chiefs have three more rest days than the Chargers in Week Two. The Chiefs also get an advantage of seven rest days from their Week 10 bye when they play the Raiders in Week 11. Over the rest of the season, the Chiefs’ short weeks and long weeks (after Thursday and Monday games) even out, and the Chiefs never play a team coming off its bye. So Kansas City ends the season with a +10 net rest day differential.
That’s particularly noteworthy for the Chiefs, as Andy Reid has a proven track record of having his teams play very well with extra time to prepare: Reid is 24-5 in his coaching career when his team is coming off a bye.
Count the schedule as one more reason to think the Chiefs are the favorites to win the Super Bowl.