Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes celebrates as time winds down in their victory over the Buffalo Bills in the NFL AFC championship football game, Sunday, Jan. 24, 2021, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Reed Hoffmann)
- The Kansas City Chiefs swung a trade for offensive tackle Orlando Brown Jr. from the Baltimore Ravens
- The Super Bowl favorites just got richer and their odds are +500 to win the Lombardi Trophy
- Are the Chiefs worth wagering on to win Super Bowl LVI at their current price?
The Kansas City Chiefs already boasted an absolutely electrifying offense and they have taken great strides this offseason to make sure star quarterback Patrick Mahomes is protected. The reigning AFC Champs struck a huge move Thursday, dealing their 2021 first round pick and other draft selections to the Baltimore Ravens for offensive tackle Orlando Brown Jr. and two picks.
They were already the favorite before the deal with +500 odds to claim their second Lombardi Trophy in three years, and those Super Bowl odds have not seen any movement since the trade. They may have been attempting a three-peat had their offensive line not been leaky against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which saw Mahomes running for his life.
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The team has already jettisoned former first overall pick Eric Fisher and Mitchell Schwartz and likely would’ve gone into the season with the underwhelming duo of Martinas Rankin and Mike Remmers on the outside. With them originally selecting 31st overall in Thursday’s draft, the top tackle prospects would’ve already been off the board. This move shores up a positional group in serious need of an upgrade.
2022 Super Bowl Odds
|Team||Odds at DraftKings|
|Kansas City Chiefs||+500|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||+750|
|Green Bay Packers||+1100|
|Los Angeles Rams||+1400|
|San Francisco 49ers||+1600|
Odds as of April 23rd
Chiefs Shoring Up Their Offensive Line
It became abundantly clear in Super Bowl 55 that the Kansas City Chiefs needed reinforcements on the offensive line. Tackles Eric Fisher and Mitchell Schwartz were unable to play due to injury, and the team was already without mainstay Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, who opted out of the season due to COVID-19.
The result wasn’t pretty, with Mahomes sacked three times, hit two more times, and was constantly running for his life.
Patrick Mahomes dropped back to pass 56 times and faced a blitz on just 6 of those dropbacks (11%).
Of the 29 pressures he faced Sunday, 27 came against a pass rush of 4 or fewer defenders.
That’s the 2nd most pressures against 4 or fewer rushers over the last 10 seasons. pic.twitter.com/Qo8XQUFL60
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) February 8, 2021
The team acted swiftly early this off-season, cutting both tackles, signing prized free agent guard Joe Thuney, coaxing Kyle Long out of retirement, and have now swung the trade for Brown Jr. The roster doesn’t have many holes, considering they’ve been to back-to-back Super Bowls, but an injection of youth was sorely needed along the O-line.
Here’s something to make Patrick Mahomes happy: Chiefs’ rebuilt offensive line now will include Orlando Brown, Joe Thuney, Kyle Long and Austin Blythe – not to mention the return of Laurent Duvernay-Tardif.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 23, 2021
They have the 58th & 63rd picks which could be used to snag another offensive linemen to protect their QB. The draft is deep in offensive line talent, which is important since they don’t have first or third round picks.
What the Chiefs Are Getting in Orlando Brown Jr.
Orlando Brown Jr. was chosen in the third round of the 2018 draft by the Ravens and will enter this season in the final year of his contract. He’s been outstanding for Baltimore, making the Pro Bowl in each of the last two campaigns, playing in all 48 games, and starting 42 of them after six games of his rookie season he began on the bench.
Based on my knowledge, this is how I project the Chiefs’ offensive line:
LT: Orlando Brown Jr., Yasir Durant
LG: Joe Thuney, Andrew Wylie
C: Austin Blythe, Nick Allegretti
RG: LDT, Kyle Long
RT: Lucas Niang, Mike Remmers
— Nate Taylor (@ByNateTaylor) April 23, 2021
Five of his first six games last season saw him on the right side, but when incumbent left tackle Ronnie Stanley went down with a season-ending ankle injury, he filled in admirably. Brown Jr. played the final ten games and two playoff contests protecting Lamar Jackson’s blind side.
Orlando Brown Jr. at LT: 0 sacks or hits allowed in 389 pass-blocking snaps last season
Chiefs got themselves a stud 😤 💪 pic.twitter.com/1ZJAgnIokK
— PFF (@PFF) April 23, 2021
He’s improved each season he’s been in the league, grading out at 68.6 in his first year, then 73.6, followed by 77.8, according to Pro Football Focus. Patrick Mahomes will still have a plethora of weapons around him, and should have an even better ability to take less of a beating following his injuries in the post-season.
Though they don’t have particularly juicy odds as the favorites to win the Super Bowl, they’re still the team to beat in the AFC and are still worthy of a wager to take home their second Lombardi Trophy in three years.
Pick: Kansas City Chiefs (+500)
Michael “Hound Dog” Harrison is well known in the sports industry as the resident statistician for the SC with Jay Onrait Show. He has worked at TSN for over 13 years, where he’s been featured on Sportscentre, That’s Hockey, That’s Hockey 2Nite, The Masters preview shows, and several more.