Kansas City Chiefs vs Arizona Cardinals preview, team news, predictions - August 20th, 2021

Arizona Cardinals vs Kansas City Chiefs
Arizona Cardinals vs Kansas City Chiefs

The Arizona Cardinals will be the underdogs at home on Friday night against the reigning AFC champions Kansas City Chiefs.

The Chiefs are going into this Week 2 preseason matchup as a dress rehearsal for the 2021 season, as many teams will likely do. Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid announced that he plans to play his starter for roughly the entire first half.

QB Patrick Mahomes, who had just one series in Week 1, gets two quarters to provide a glimpse of what the rest of the AFC has to deal with this year. The Arizona Cardinals won a hard-fought preseason opener against the Dallas Cowboys.

They did so with their third-string players and kicker Matt Prater on back-to-back scoring drives to close out the game. It's unclear how long Arizona starters will play, but they'll likely be pulled sometime in the second quarter.

Kansas City Chiefs vs Arizona Cardinals - Team News

All eyes will be on Patrick Mahomes and Tyreek Hill on the field, but you should be watching the RBs and OL.

RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire was assumed to be a featured player in fantasy for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2020, but didn't see a large workload with the pass-heavy offense. It'll be intriguing to see how he is implemented into the gameplan this year, as he has proven he deserves more touches behind his new-look OL.

Speaking of the Kansas City Chiefs OL, whoever plays in the second half will tell you how the depth is shaping up. Nick Allegretti played 84% of the offensive snaps last week at guard and center. If he plays part of the third quarter at center, he's in the lead to be Creed Humphrey's backup.

If he plays most of the second half, he could be expendable. It's never good if you're playing late in the fourth quarter.

Hopefully, the Arizona offense can come out of the gate swinging after being slow to get things rolling in games last season. Both AJ Green and DeAndre Hopkins may be unavailable to play, but Kyler Murray could see a large snap count.

Rookie WR Rondale Moore will showcase his versatility, with both starters likely out. The defense was good in its first preseason game with rookie Zaven Collins looking comfortable at MLB. Isaiah Simmons should get a bunch of playing time, and will even spend some time next to Collins.

Arizona seem to have great depth in offense; the starters in the defense could finally give them an edge.

Kansas City Chiefs vs Arizona Cardinals - Predictions

The Kansas City Chiefs are expected to win, with their starters playing a big role in the first half, so it would be a huge surprise if they lose this game. Still, the Cardinals' defense has a lot of potential, with Budda Baker, Isaiah Simmons, Zaven Collins and Byron Murphy Jr.

The first quarter could be a battle between starters, with the second quarter featuring Mahomes and company going through the motions. Arizona played well down the stretch in Week 1, but may not be able to do so in two straight weeks.

21-13 Kansas City Chiefs with the MVP being RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire with over 50 rushing yards, 40 receiving yards and a TD.

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Edited by Bhargav