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Miami Dolphins @ Kansas City Chiefs tips and picks: Isiah Pacheco driving force behind Wild Card win

The Kansas City Chiefs (11-6) welcome the Miami Dolphins (11-6) to Arrowhead Stadium for the AFC Wild Card Round on Saturday night (0100 GMT Sun).

Saturday’s second AFC Wild Card Round matchup features the Miami Dolphins (11-6) on the road to last year’s champion Kansas City Chiefs (11-6).

The Dolphins shot out the blocks and surprised a few people this season - but not us. Our pre-season picks had them pipping the Buffalo Bills to the division.

There will be a fervent atmosphere at the red-washed Arrowhead Stadium on Saturday, but last season’s Super Bowl winners just haven’t hit the same heights.

One of their 11 wins this campaign came in Week 9 as they toppled the Dolphins 21-14 in Frankfurt, Germany. That win took them to 7-2 and Miami to 6-3.

Since then, KC has gone 5-4. One of the reasons for that dicey run is the issues on offence. Lose throws are rarely the problem with Patrick Mahomes, but his receiving core has butter fingers.




No team dropped more passes than the Chiefs, who also really struggled with turnovers and penalties.

Their elite defence was the saving grace. With a defence this good, you’re never out of a game.

They allow just 17.1 points per game and even if they’re dropping passes and firing blanks, that’s not an insurmountable number in any case. Not with Mahomes on the ball.

It’s been 24 years since the Dolphins won a playoff game and as tough as this game looks on paper, they always have a chance if they can dictate the play.

Much like their opponents, their defence does a job, but the loss of Bradley Chubb just two weeks before the playoffs could prove to be a fatal blow.

Still, this is a team that can score. They can combine an explosive run game with Tua Tagovailoa’s ability to pick out Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle to keep the Chiefs guessing.

Despite some just criticism for the Chiefs receivers, they still put up some of the best numbers in the league.

From the Dolphin's point of view, there may be too many forces against them. Mounting injuries, Tua in these below-freezing conditions and perhaps an inability to stop Isiah Pacheco.

The cold conditions may see the Chiefs lean towards running the ball more often. Pacheco has carried 47 times across three games, going for 110+ in two of those.


Suggested bets

Kansas City Chiefs -3.5

Under 44 points

Prop: Pacheco over 15.5 rushing attempts

Prop: Pacheco to score a touchdown

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