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On Deck: Chiefs at Patriots

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Travis Kelce of the Kansas City Chiefs is tackled by Kevin Johnson of the Houston Texans in the second quarter during the AFC Wild Card Playoff game on January 9, 2016 in Houston, Texas.

    On Deck will be here all season to provide you with everything you need to know (and a few things you don't) about every postseason game during the 2015 season.

    The Teams: The Chiefs have now won 11 straight games since starting the season 1-5, and they've done that without Jamal Charles. They've done it with a standout defense and surprisingly good quarterback play from the ever-improving Alex Smith. Their 30-0 win in Houston in the Wild Card round sent a pretty big message. The Patriots are getting healthy and they still have Mr. January/February himself in the form of Tom Brady, plus they're darn near unbeatable at home in the postseason.

    Past Meetings: The Chiefs lead the all-time series 17-13-3 with the Chiefs winning their last meeting in 2014 in runaway fashion at Arrowhead Stadium.

    Who's Hot: The Chiefs forced five turnovers against Houston, but of course, that was against Brian Hoyer and not Tom Brady. The revolving door of running backs for the Chiefs continued with Spencer Ware, who had 67 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Tight end Travis Kelce had 128 yards on eight grabs.

    The main thing going well for the Patriots right now is just rest and the fact they're getting healthier at the right time with guys like Julian Edelman closer to a return with each passing day.

    Who's Not: Jeremy Maclin had three catches for 29 yards and left the game with what is said to be a high-ankle sprain. Bad, yes, but not as bad as feared when we thought he'd torn his ACL for a third time. Either way, he's likely out of the remainder of the postseason, which takes away a huge threat in the Chiefs' passing game.

    Despite the fact the Patriots were playing for the No. 1 overall seed in the AFC playoffs, they didn't seem to put their best foot forward in Week 17 against the Dolphins in what ended up being a 20-10 loss. Tom Brady passed for 134 yards on 12-of-21 passing and they were led in rushing by Steven Jackson's 14 carries for 35 yards.