Ranking the Chiefs' 5 Biggest AFC Rivals After Stefon Diggs Trade

C.J. Stroud and the Texans look like AFC contenders after adding WR Stefon Diggs
C.J. Stroud and the Texans look like AFC contenders after adding WR Stefon Diggs / Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
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3. Cincinnati Bengals

In terms of pure rivalries, the Bengals should be No. 1 on this list. Joe Burrow is the only QB outside of Tom Brady to have actually beaten Patrick Mahomes in the playoffs, and we know Cincinnati can go toe-to-toe with Kansas City on any given Sunday.

Burrow's injuries doomed Cincinnati's season in 2023 and they'll be back with a vengeance this next year. Their offense will look different in 2024, but as long as they've got Burrow and Ja'Marr Chase, they'll be dangerous.

That said, Joe Mixon is now with the Texans, Tyler Boyd is a free agent and Tee Higgins could still be traded, while their defense is declining and losing valuable pieces. I'd be confident facing Cincinnati in the playoffs, espeically after the Chiefs finally beat the Bengals in the AFC Championship game in 2022. That's why they're lower on this list despite the intense history of this rivalry.

I wanted to share the above tweet as a reminder that despite the Bengals' 3-1 record over the Chiefs in the Mahomes/Burrow era, Kansas City is still the team with the rings. Cincinnati fell short in the Super Bowl against the Rams and that may have been their best chance to get a Lombardi Trophy.

Burrow's injury history is a legitimate concern and the Bengals play in one of the toughest divisions in the NFL.

I wouldn't be surprised to see Cincinnati back in the AFC title game, nor would I be surprised to see the miss the playoffs entirely.